Saturday, November 24, 2012

Mexican mummy-dog

This 1,000-year-old dog was discovered in Candelaria Cave in Coahuila, Mexico (more photos and video here). In the semi-arid region it mummified naturally, but was buried deliberately. "This is the first mummified canine that has an archaeological context," explains archaeologist Yuri De La Rosa, not to mention it's the only mummified dog ever found in Mexico, others having been found in Peru and Egypt. It was among hundreds of human remains and thousands of ancient artifacts, including textiles, baskets, and bows and arrows, and will soon be measured, x-rayed, and carbon tested to determine its exact age and breed. “It reinforces the idea that dogs were placed as companions in the funerary traditions of the region’s nomads, it also presents the possibility that these animals were domesticated,” said archaeologist Alejandro Bautista Valdespino.

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