The Brownsville Animal Regulation and Care Center (BARCC) has introduced a heartwarming way for pet owners to honor their beloved pets who have passed away. They have created a Dia De Los Muertos Altar, a tradition inspired by the Mexican holiday that celebrates the lives of departed loved ones.
The idea for this tribute was conceived by Monica Llanas, an adoption specialist at the shelter. Monica, who grew up in Mexico, explained that in Mexico, the souls of pets are celebrated on October 28th.
“On the 28th is when the souls of the pets come back here and greet us,” and this is how the idea came about, Llana said.
This cultural tradition inspired her to create a space where pet owners could pay their respects to their furry companions.
The Dia De Los Muertos Altar at BARCC is adorned with framed photos of deceased pets, showcasing dogs of various breeds and even some cherished feline friends. Some of these photos bear the names of the pets, adding a personal touch to the memorial.
Rosaura Cedillo, a fiscal clerk at BARCC, emphasized that the initiative was not just for the shelter's staff but also for the wider community. Many people have lost pets that hold a special place in their hearts, and this altar provides a meaningful way to remember and honor them.
“We’ve all lost a loved pet that was very close to our heart and we wanted to do something not only for us but for the public,” Cedillo said.
The response from the public has been positive, with pet owners either submitting photos of their departed pets through Facebook or visiting the shelter to drop off framed pictures.
The altar will remain open for photo contributions until October 28, 2023, aligning with the day when pets are traditionally honored in this beautiful Dia De Los Muertos tribute.