Warning: This article contains graphic content.
The pictured dog, devastated by the tragic death of its owner, sat with the body on the train tracks of Montemorelos and refused to move. Reportedly, Victor Reyna Vazquez, aged 57, had been drinking near the train tracks when he was hit by a train in the early hours of the morning. He lost his life as dawn rose over the city.
The emergency services reached the scene and declared Vazquez to be dead but were initially unable to remove the dog from the tracks. Local residents, who knew Vazquez, claimed that the man suffered from long-term alcohol abuse but that his faithful hound had accompanied him for years.
Police officers and paramedics struggled to convince the dog to leave the body of its owner, and the dog even bit those who tried to intervene in the animal’s quiet vigil. Eventually, however, Vazquez’s body was recovered, and the dog was gently separated from his companion for the last time.
Upsetting photos sparked much attention and conversation among social media users, with many lobbying for the bereaved pet to be re-homed. One user commented on the news report by saying, “We have a lot of things to learn from animals.”
Numerous scientific studies have been generated to help us understand the loyalty and empathy response in dogs. “Dogs demonstrate amazing empathy towards humans,” says All Things Dogs, referencing a study carried out by Animal Cognition. The study’s findings suggest that dogs will often gravitate towards comforting behaviors; they will “sniff, nuzzle, and lick both owners and strangers alike” when faced with behaviors that intimate stress, fear, or upset.
Dogs can also present as calm and submissive and are capable of grieving. “Dogs form strong emotional bonds with members of their human family,” writes Psychology Today, “and often suffer grief when a loved one dies or moves away.”
Este perrito cuida el cuerpo de su dueño luego de morir tras ser atropellado por el tren en Montemorelos. 😭 pic.twitter.com/UvgTttZN29
— Yari Edebaldo (@yari_trevino) April 4, 2019
It is unclear from news reports whether or not the grieving dog in Montemorelos, Mexico, has been taken into shelter accommodation, but there is some public speculation as to its welfare and whereabouts.
Twitter user Yari Edebaldo shared footage of the grieving dog next to the body of its owner, captioned: “This puppy takes care of the body of its owner after dying, after being run over by the train in Montemorelos.” Comments beneath the video expressed shock, compassion, and concern, with one user asking what became of the dog. Edebaldo replied: “They have it in the facilities of Civil Protection of Montemorelos.”
If the dog has indeed been taken into care, it surely won’t be long before the heartbroken animal will be welcomed into a new, loving home.