Remembering our Dogs on the Day of the Dead
What is the Day of the Dead?
Originating from Mexico, the Day of the Dead (Día de los Muertos) is a colourful and joyous celebration, to show love and respect for deceased family members and celebrate life. The dead are kept alive as part of the community in memory and spirit and during Día de los muertos they return to be with their families. Altars are beautifully decorated with photos and offerings to honour the souls so that they return home to be with their families.
The celebrations take place at the beginning of November and are not to be confused with Halloween – they’re both separate events with different origins and rituals. Death and spirits often inflict fear on Halloween, while on the Day of the Dead they are celebrated and honoured.
Remembering our Furry Friends
We can learn so much from these heartening celebrations.
Our busy, modern life leaves us with very little time to connect with the memories of our deceased loved ones – including the dogs who have left the biggest paw prints on our heart.
Dogs are truly are the beating heart of our families, symbolising a child, sibling, best friend or long-term companion. As their owners we promise to give them the love and care that they deserve throughout their lives, and we agree to inevitably feel the pain of losing them when their time comes. By making death a natural part of your spiritual reflections, it can help to alleviate your fears or anxieties.
I’m sure the treasured memories of my beloved Golden Retriever, Simba and my Aunt’s German Shepard, Zeus wouldn’t have made it to the forefront of my mind had I not been reading up on this wonderful celebration of life. Now I sit here remembering the times my childhood pooch Simba used to sit on the garden bench, looking out for us to get home from school. For all the love they give us, we should take time to treasure those memories more often.
Although more traditionally known for remembering humans, many people use this time to remember their four-legged friends too. It’s a beautiful thought and the main reason we created the Day of the Dog event which is taking place on Saturday, 2nd November at Mr Fox Croydon and on Sunday 3rd November at Revs Bar Cardiff.
To coincide with the Mexican festival, we’re honouring and celebrating all the dogs who mean so much to us, both the deceased and the living.
In preparation for our Day of the Dog Fiesta we’re looking for stories and photos of those special dogs at Rainbow Bridge who left a special mark on your heart. It could be your childhood pooch, your best pal or your fur-baby. We want to light up the next month in their memory. Our top 40 will be printed and placed on our real altar at the Day of the Dog Fiesta on the 2/3rd November.
During Día de los Muertos, dogs are believed to guide the ancestral spirits to their final resting place in the afterlife, so we’ll be donating all the offerings to the Guide Dogs, as they guide living spirits.
‘Dogs are not our whole lives, but they make our lives whole.’ So for all the love, affection, patience and kindness they share with us through their short furry life, we want to honour them with a big party filled with all the things they love in return.
Further Event Details
Each event offers something different. Dog owners who come to Croydon’s event can enjoy live Mariachi music from the Mariachi Amigos and those coming to Revs Bar in Cardiff can enjoy some sugar skull cookies for the pooch.
Throughout both events, pampered pooches can enjoy Games and Prizes from Dog Furiendly, Free Calavera (Skull) Face Painting for The Humans, Goody Bag from Tails.com, Piñatas filled with doggy treats and a Mini Dog Show Searching for the Most Handsome Chico and Prettiest Chica.