Ancient Pet Cemeteries Found in Peru:
Even in ancient Peru, it seems dogs were a man's best friend. Peruvian investigators have discovered a pre-Columbian culture of dog lovers who built pet cemeteries and buried their pets with warm blankets and even treats for the afterlife.
"They are dogs that were thanked and recognized for their social and familial contribution," anthropologist Sonia Guillen said. "These dogs were not sacrificed."
Since 1993, researchers have unearthed 82 dog tombs in pet cemetery plots, laid alongside human mummy tombs of the Chiribaya people in the fertile Osmore River valley, 540 miles southeast of Lima. The Chiribaya were farmers who lived from A.D. 900 to 1350 before the rise of Peru's Inca Empire.
"We have found that in all the cemeteries, always, in between the human tombs there are others dedicated to the dogs, full-grown and puppies," said Guillen, who specializes in the study of mummies. "They have their own grave and in some cases they are buried with blankets and food."