Jewish Dog Owners Make Waves With 'Bark Mitzvah' Trend

New Jersey canine celebrates reaching age 13 — in dog years — by donning a kippah for a ceremony attended by his owner and friends.

While not exactly mainstream, bar mitzvahs for dogs, known as bark mitzvahs, are apparently now a rite of passage for some Jewish dog owners and their pets, part of what the Associated Press describes as a booming multimillion-dollar industry.

The AP released footage Wednesday of a ceremony honoring a New Jersey canine named Nicky, who celebrated reaching age 13 — in dog years — by donning a kippah for a ceremony attended by his owner and friends. I really believe that the animals have a right to have a party and a religion, said Lee Day, a talis-wearing woman described by the news service as a bark mitzvah performer.

Predictably, not everyone is thrilled with the trend. Its really part of a sacred tradition, said Rabbi Daniel Satlow, referring to the human version of the ceremony. To imagine that a dog could do anything like this is degrading.

Read more at the Forward.

AP