Saint's day a blessing for Spanish pets

MADRID (AFP) - Pets ruled the roost in Spain, with owners bringing dogs, cats, parrots, chinchillas and even tortoises for a church blessing to mark the feast day of Saint Anthony, patron saint of animals.

Owners preened their pets ahead of the traditional blessing at Madrid's San Anton church, ahead of a midday mass to celebrate the third-century saint.

Church rector Juan Martinez told reporters that he had blessed around 100 animals.

Pet owners also took away "rosquillas", or doughnuts, offered at this time of year. These are traditionally kept along with a coin in a cupboard to be eaten on January 17 the following year.

Another Spanish city celebrating the feast was Alicante, on the Mediterranean coast, with its annual Porrat de San Anton market, an animal show and a blessing of animals in the bullring.

Elsewhere, priests in the central city of Ciudad Real blessed bread rolls while cockerels were auctioned to mark the occasion.

No comments: