When the holiday season rolls around each year, it’s not uncommon to spot nativity scenes mixed in with Santa Clause and candy cane decorations.
While many historians believe Jesus was born in in the warmer months between spring and autumn when shepherds would be out in the fields, the church adopted the celebration of his birthday right around the time of other winter celebrations, such as the winter solstice, Yule, and Saturnalia.
Today, many people celebrate with a mix of traditions, pulling from both Christian and pagan roots, and the nativity scene is often present in some way or other.
In the city of Palenque, in Southern Mexico, a large nativity scene was set up on the main square by the local government. It was nice to look at, but there was something unusual about the display: It featured a real dog lying in the manger! Frank Lopez shared a photo of the scene on Facebook so you can see it for yourself:
According to The Dodo, the weather had turned cold over the month of December and it seems the dog was trying to find a place to warm up. However, closer inspection revealed she wasn’t alone, but had given birth to 7 puppies!
Local journalist Eric Guzmán was among the first to spot the stray mama dog with her puppies and couldn’t help but connect the scene to the story of Jesus being born in a stable and placed in the manger.
In an interview with The Dodo, Eric said: “I was awestruck, and at the same time joyful seeing that she had her puppies in a safe place where they won’t get wet or cold.”
Just like in the story of Jesus’ birth, word spread and people gathered – some bearing gifts of food and water.
Eventually, the animal welfare group Dejando Huellitas S.O.S. Palenque got invovled and they were able to find the mama dog and her puppies a warm foster home to live in.
They put out a plea on Facebook asking for a foster home to step forward.
Within just a few days of putting the plea out, they were able to share that she had a temporary home where she won’t have to worry about the elements or keeping her puppies safe.
There’s truly something magical about the holiday season and we love to see it!