After Brazil flooding, loyalty to the dead
January 17th, 2011
06:10 PM ET

After Brazil flooding, loyalty to the dead

As the death toll from devastating flooding in Brazil continues to rise, a single picture drives home the sense of loss.

Leao, a medium-sized brown mutt,  lies next to the grave of her owner, Cristina Maria Cesario Santana, who died in the catastrophic landslides caused by heavy rain.  This AFP/Getty picture was taken on Saturday, the second consecutive day that the dog refused to leave the woman's grave at the cemetery in Teresopolis, near Rio de Janiero.

Brazilians are bracing for more rain, fearing more landslides after waves of muddy water swallowed towns in the country's worst flood disaster on record.

At least 655 deaths were reported in a mountainous region of Rio de Janeiro state, northeast of the city of Rio.

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Filed under: Animals • Brazil • Weather
soundoff (563 Responses)
  1. Marco

    The greatest story ever told on CNN. And I'm not just saying that because Phoenix and Onyx, my two labs and I are heading to the park for a Frisbee marathon tomorrow. Dogs are certainly man's best friend. A cat would never do that.

    January 18, 2011 at 1:30 am | Report abuse |
  2. Sandra (braz and U.S. Cit.)

    This dog should work for the GOVERMENT IN BRAZIL. : >)

    January 18, 2011 at 1:38 am | Report abuse |
  3. erib baumen

    All dogs go to heaven

    January 18, 2011 at 1:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Andrew

      What, the gay club?

      January 18, 2011 at 8:56 am | Report abuse |
  4. robyn

    In China they eat dogs on their dinner table!

    January 18, 2011 at 1:44 am | Report abuse |
  5. Claudia

    Have more than 500 animals suffering from this catastrophe.
    If someone speak Portuguese can visit this Facebook page and donate anything that can help the animals, they need food, bed, home, medicine, Vet. and love.

    January 18, 2011 at 1:44 am | Report abuse |
  6. julie

    I only hope she doesnt grieve herself to death

    January 18, 2011 at 1:53 am | Report abuse |
  7. Jason

    I like dogs much better than humans. Most Americans have no class! People suck!

    January 18, 2011 at 2:00 am | Report abuse |
  8. khell

    i never like dogs until one day my daughter brought a puppy home she tried to save from being sent to the pound. i since saved another one and i cared for them like they are my children. they have feelings too like us, and they are very loyal. please adopt.

    January 18, 2011 at 2:01 am | Report abuse |
  9. Muggsy3

    it isnt just dogs who are faithful, loving companions. We have a cat and an Amazon Parrot both of whom give and ask for attention and affection. Animals are incapable of the lying or malicious actions that humans routinely indulge in. think of that Jen and other non-pet persons. bottom line: this photo was about loyalty, love, devotion and sorrow.

    January 18, 2011 at 2:16 am | Report abuse |
  10. duhlinduh

    I have a "Katrina Dog". I grew up with pet dogs all my life, and she is by far the most loyal of them all. After surviving such a tragedy, I personally believe she is thankful to be alive and to have a loving home. She will never leave my side unleashed and will approach to give me a hug (head down into my chest) several times a day.

    January 18, 2011 at 2:26 am | Report abuse |
  11. erib baumen

    Dogs can forgive and dont hold grudges

    January 18, 2011 at 2:29 am | Report abuse |
  12. Liberty Spinner

    Our dog slept on the floor on my husband's side of the bed no matter how many times I tried to move her after he died. She went completely crazy with grief. Who says other creatures haven't the same feelings we do or that they have no souls. Or no souls like ours. That Brazilian dog proves they have real feelings and are the most loyal friends we will ever have.
    Now if I only could teach my dog how to tell a good joke and to laugh.

    January 18, 2011 at 2:35 am | Report abuse |

    That's some sad stuff right there.

    January 18, 2011 at 2:39 am | Report abuse |
  14. JCizzle

    I love dogs more than people, this is the saddest picture I have seen in a long time.

    January 18, 2011 at 2:40 am | Report abuse |
  15. Cissy

    Wow! That is so sad. I wish people were as loyal as dogs were.

    January 18, 2011 at 2:51 am | Report abuse |
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