Brightly dressed dogs parade in Rio de Janeiro as pet lovers kick off Carnival

Dozens of dogs took part in a costumed parade as Carnival celebrations began in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil — As Rio de Janeiro’s Carnival celebrations kicked off Saturday, dozens of dogs dressed up as mermaids, superheroes, butterflies and clowns at one of the city’s most beloved canine street parties. Paraded with their owners.

The Blocão — a play on words that include “bloco,” which refers to carnival street parties and “cão,” or dog in Portuguese — was held Saturday morning by more than 200 people in Rio’s beachfront Barra de Tijuca neighborhood. Collected. Dressed in tulle and sequins, the fluffy fashionistas competed to choose the best dresses of the day.

On a small stage in the center of the leafy square, children of all sizes and races waggled and wag their tails. Organizers announced the contestants over the microphone, as confetti rained down.

Alana the Chihuahua was dressed as a sparkly mermaid, Trende the Cocker Spaniel as a cape-wearing Hermione, and Baido the Shih Tzu as a furry Superman. Scooby-Doo, a giant pit monster, was a crowd pleaser as was the tiger with an unruly golden mane.

Paçoca, a 2-year-old dachshund with 100,000 followers on Instagram, parades as a hot dog — stuffed in pairs and topped with ketchup and mustard.

“He’s an inspiration,” said his owner Helena Ribeiro, 32, who wore a red shirt emblazoned with a Heinz ketchup label. Paçoca’s clothing, she said, was inspired by her race. “It suits him!”

Rodrigo Pirola and Cecilia Myrele, both 39, came dressed as Fred and Wilma Flintstone, matching their 4-year-old basset hound Amora, who wore a Peebles Flintstone-inspired orange outfit.

“Amora is our daughter; we are a family. We go everywhere together,” Meryl told The Associated Press. “Everyone here is madly in love with dogs.”

Carolina Eduardo, 27, dressed her sand-colored mutt Rebecca, 13, in a snow-white costume, with a shiny dark wig tucked between her ears as a “cherry on top.”

Among Rio’s ubiquitous ice tea hawkers – a staple of the city’s beaches – Charlotte, a 3-year-old border collie mix, was dressed in orange and carried two small tin kegs on her back.

“I love carnivals, I love parties,” her owner, Veronica Beck, 47, said as fellow dog lovers snapped photos of Charlotte. “It’s a moment of joy. And it’s a way to celebrate with our dogs. Because they bring such joy to our lives, too.

Dogs and their owners braved extreme temperatures to take part in Blocco. Organizers distributed water and goodie bags with treats, as canine participants panted in the shade, their tongues hanging out.

“This year, the heat is not making it easy for us,” said organizer Marco Antonio Vieira, known as “Toto.” A major concern, he noted, is overheating the asphalt, which can scratch the claws. “We have to protect animal welfare.”

Twin sisters Danielle and Flavia Mendes, both 43, were among those singing along to the crowd. They’ve been participating in Blocko almost every year for the past decade and, on Saturday, brought their identical Shihzus, one dressed as Superman and the other in colorful, hand-woven clown costumes. dressed up

“For dog parents, it’s a way for us to have fun,” Danielle Mendes said. “It brings our community together.”

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