A family of “old” dogs has stunned the internet, with many people commenting on the animals’ stately appearance.
The Xoloitzcuintli, sometimes shortened to Xolo, has been likened by Redditors to Anubis, the Egyptian god of the dead and guardian of the underworld.
A post on the site’s Interesting As F*** forum, by you/DavidRolands, has attracted a lot of attention since it was posted on Wednesday, garnering more than 87,000 votes.
The photo, seen here, shows three black dogs, presumably parents and a puppy.
“A family of Xolos, one of the oldest dog breeds in the world,” the caption reads.
The American Kennel Club (AKC) advised animal lovers that the correct way to pronounce the breed is “show-low-eats-QUEENT-lee”.
It explained more about their long lineage, saying, “The 3,000-year-old Xoloitzcuintli, the ancient Aztec hound of the gods, is today a loving companion and watchful watchdog.”
They come in three sizes and can be fur or hairless. Despite their resemblance to Anubis, the breed originated in Central America, not Egypt.
The AKC said: “Xoloitzcuintles are national treasures in Mexico, with histories dating back at least 3,000 years. Mentions of these “strange hairless dogs” appear in the journals of Columbus and other European explorers. Ancient Aztecs named the breed after their canine-headed dog. god Xolotl.
“Xolos were considered sacred by the Aztecs and were often sacrificed and buried along with their owners to serve as protective guides to the next world. In modern times, Xolos are devoted watchdogs and companions.”
Their standout appearance was a hit online, as LordSharington thought, “They definitely look like dogs from the underworld.”
spiderMechanic reckoned, “Anubis was the first thing that came to mind when I saw the photo.”
Charleeclairee agreed, saying, “Yes! I came here to say that Anubis and his sons have arrived.”
Merikaninjunwarrior calculated: “They also look like sphinx cats, so that makes them seem much more important.”
Beneficial_Step9088 admitted, “I thought these were statues.”
SplodyPants was delighted: “Damn it. This is really interesting as F***. I’d love to hang out with those dogs in real life.”
JefferyDexterB wrote: “Serious Anubis vibes.”
According to Encyclopaedia Britannica, the dog-headed god Xolotl is said to have “descended to the underground hell of Mictlan to gather the bones of the ancient dead.” While Anubis, often represented by a jackal or a man with the head of one, had different roles in different dynasties, from lord of the dead to “conductor of souls,” it said.
The chart below, provided by Statista, shows popular dog breeds.
news week contacted u/DavidRolands for comment.