Every year, millions of Hindus around the world celebrate Diwali, or the Festival of Lights. The holiday signifies the victory of good over evil with preparations and celebrations that typically last five days. In Nepal, one day of the festivities is set aside to celebrate the relationship that humans have with their canine friends.

Over the five-day celebration, Hindus give gifts and tell stories. But on the second day, it all goes to the dogs. It's called Kukur Tihar or Swanti in the Newar region. And it's a day to pay homage to dogs and their loyal companionship.

On this day, dogs are given garlands, a mark on the forehead called tika, and all of the delicious food they can eat. Canine companions are also anointed with a red powder on their heads as a sign of their sacredness.

Nepalese Festival of DogsThe red powder marks the dogs as objects of devotion. (Photo: Imgur)

Nepalese Festival of DogsA garland of flowers is draped around the neck of every dog during Kukur Tihar; not only those animals that are pets, but stray dogs too. (Photo: Imgur)

Nepalese Festival of DogsDogs are showered with love, affection, food and flowers during Kukur Tihar. (Photo: Imgur)


And the best part is that all dogs are given the royal treatment — pets and strays alike. On Kukur Tihar, Nepal goes completely to the dogs. And dog lovers around the world celebrate.