Merciful pets paradise

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MEMORIAL: Pet cemetery. PHOTO: AP
MEMORIAL: Pet cemetery. PHOTO: AP

As Taiwanese crowded countryside cemeteries recently to honour their ancestors, many marked the traditional tomb-sweeping festival by visiting their dead pets as well at the Merciful Pets Paradise. This is a pet cemetery in suburban Sanhsia near Taipei. Animal lovers stood before rows of cabinets filled with urns containing their dead dogs, cats, parrots and other pets. Before a memorial service Peter removed the urn containing the ashes of his potbelly pig, Dong Dong. He placed the urn on a desk alongside a photo of Dong Dong and a selection of his favourite foods, including bread, watermelon and apples. "I prayed to the Buddha that Dong Dong will reincarnate into a man, not another pig that lives a miserable life," he said. Next to him, Jan Hsia-ping cried for her best friend, Baby, a fiveyear- old Pomeranian who died last year. "I brought Baby's favourite noodles and steamed egg," Jan said. "I prayed that she could forgive me for not providing her the best care when she was sick." The two-story brick house contains some 2,000 urns of pets and hundreds more are added each year, said Kuo Chin-yi, the owner of Merciful Pets Paradise. COMPILED BY NIMI KURIAN



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