Authorities have rediscovered a mummified dog in a school museum and
— having determined it was never properly studied
— plan to soon carbon date and DNA test it to learn more about its origins.
The dog was found in 1953 at Cave of the Candelaria, an ancient burial site in semi-desert region of Mexico, and was taken by archaeologists, along with textiles, ceramics, arrowheads, and mummified figures
— such as a 3-year-old child wrapped in a rope, reported the Los Angeles Times.
Archaeologists rediscovered the 1,000-year-old animal at the Escuela de Bachilleres Venustiano Carranza, a state school in the city of Torreon.
The dog will be studied and put in the context of other information known about the pre-Hispanic civilizations in that area of Mexico, said Jaime Alejandro Bautista, the institute's subdirector of public records.
The dog could then help to explain the origins of certain canine breeds in the country and the interactions of different groups of people.
"We know that dogs are associated with funeral rites in pre-Hispanic societies, so it is likely that it was deposited there intentionally," Bautista said. "The dog mummified naturally, due to the conditions of the microclimate in the cave."
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