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Family uses billboards to memorialize a beloved, fallen pet

One local billboard in tribute of a pet is getting quite the attention (Denise Rosch | KSNV)

They're treated like part of the family. In many cases, they're just as spoiled as the kids.

Anyone who has ever lost a pet knows how devastating it is. One local dog owner is remembering her pet in a very public way.

Videos show a five pound Yorkie terrier named "King Louie" interacting with his family.

For owner Judith Perez, they're memories worth hanging on to.

"A dose of cuteness, a dose of love, just made your day," said Perez.

Last week, Perez made the difficult decision of putting her beloved Louie down.

Brain inflammation and fluid on his spine had made it impossible for him to walk anymore.

Then, Judith's fiance, Steve Siegel with the Siegel Group, had an idea.

"At first, I was like, really?" said Perez.

They made two billboards to honor their pet. One is at Paradise and Twain, while the other is at Paradise and Karen.

It's an idea that made sense for Louie, the former poster pup for a local event.

"He was on billboards before this event we had at Rumor, 'Yappy Hour,' so we said it would be a beautiful tribute for all he gave us to let everyone know he had passed," Perez said.

Laura Pijanowski is the manager at Craig Road Pet Cemetary. She knows the death of a pet can take a definite toll.

"It really is an emotional job," said Pijanowski. "I consider it a privilege to be here."

Since the mid-1960's, well over 7,500 dogs, cats, horses, and even an elephant have been buried here.

Some owners spend several thousand dollars to get the best of the best for their furry family member.

"Letting go is the hardest thing to do," said Pijanowski. "Keep their memory alive, what they're pet meant to them, how dearly they were loved."

And while Louie's headstone is now being crafted, the billboards are up in his honor and those videos remind that "family" can come in many forms.

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