Buddhist Funerals for Dogs

by K-Dean

The city of Bangkok has an estimated 150,000 homeless mutts that live on the streets.

Pet lovers who want to send their pets off in style are visiting Klong Toey Nai Temple, by the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok. You can mark the passing of beloved pets with funeral rites which begin with prayers read by monks followed by a two-hour cremation and ending with a trip down the river to scatter the ashes.

The temple began cremating stray cats and dogs nearly 10 years ago, and has since opened their services for pet funerals. They now perform anywhere from five to fifteen funerals a day. Most of the animals who come in for cremation are dogs and cats, however other pets are also welcomed including, turtles, fish, rabbits and monkeys.

Sampao Yampradit, a 79-year-old animal lover and undertaker who has performed the service for pets for more than 7 years says it is part of Buddhist beliefs that cremation sends the soul into the next life while a burial might not do that.

The temple in the capital, which has an estimated 800,000 or more homeless dogs, also offers free services for anyone who brings in a dog but can’t afford to pay the fee.

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