Dog Carrying Day: Chinese village celebrates annual tradition by dressing animal in clothes and parading on wooden throne

Legend has it that the first settlers in the area were saved from dying of thirst by a dog which led them to a water source in the area

Loulla-Mae Eleftheriou-Smith
Tuesday 05 September 2017 13:45
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Local Chinese villagers carry a dog dressed in human clothes during a folk festival parade known as 'Dog carrying Day'
Local Chinese villagers carry a dog dressed in human clothes during a folk festival parade known as 'Dog carrying Day'

An annual festival that sees a dog being dressed up in human clothing, carried on a sedan chair and worshipped as a god, has been celebrated by villagers in an area of China.

Conducted every year by the Miao people of Jiaobang village in the Guizhou province, The Dog Carrying Day festival has seen the creatures worshipped for centuries.

Legend has it that the first settlers in the area were saved from dying of thirst by a dog which led them to a water source in the area, an act the settlers believed to be a sign of divinity, according to the South China Morning Post.

The annual celebration is marked with a parade for the dog which is dressed in a tailor-made shirt and a hat. It is then placed on a wooden sedan chair and carried over a rice paddy, while people sing and beat drums.

A shaman leads the parade and people have mud thrown at them as part of a symbolic gesture to the god for peace, health and prosperity.

People will gather in the streets alongside the parade to show gratitude to the animal and pray for a good harvest in the coming year, according to the People’s Daily newspaper.

The celebrations include dressing a pooch up in human clothing, and placing it on a sedan chair
The tradition has been observed for generations

Some have criticised the parade however, with people last year claiming online that the parade mistreats the dog by tying a chain around the animal’s neck.

Others have compared it to the Yulin Dog Meat Festival, where thousands of dogs are slaughtered at the event which was founded by traders in 2010 hoping to boost sales.

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