Owner throws ‘Bark Mitzvah’ for 13-year-old dog – with his own kippah and tallit

Owner Ashkey Sherman was raised as a Reform Jew and threw her chihuahua his very own ‘Bark Mitzvah’ on his 13th birthday as a bit of harmless fun – the pooch even wore a kippah and tallit at the ceremony

The ceremony was just a bit of fun
The ceremony was just a bit of fun

Waning to celebrate her dog’s 13th birthday in style, a doting owner threw her chihuahua his own ‘Bark Mitzvah’ in a park.

Ashley Sherman, 34, who was raised a Reform Jew and still values her heritage, opted to hold the cute ceremony – a dog version of a Bar Mitzvah – as a way of celebrating her pooch’s special day.

Chihuahua Bradley was snapped in his own kippah and tallit alongside stuffed toys to represent the Torah and a rabbi.

Ashley said there was no religious leader involved in the ceremony as there’s a ‘fine line between fun and sacrilegious’ that she didn’t want to cross.

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Bradley had his own kippah and tallit


Trista Wolf / Kennedy News)

When the pictures were shared to Facebook, they were lauded by other dog lovers who announced they were going to follow in Ashley’s footsteps and celebrate their dog’s coming of age.

Ashley, who works as an industrial recruiter, was bowled over by the enthusiastic response and has revealed that she’s planning to have a party with Bradley’s pup pals to celebrate once the weather warms up.

Ashley, from Cleveland, Ohio, US, said: “Bradley’s 13th birthday was on April 10.

“I was raised Jewish – I had my Bat Mitzvah, my brother had his Bar Mitzvah. I was raised in a Reform congregation so we’re a bit more relaxed about it.

“I attend synagogue on the holidays, my faith is an important thing to me.

“I had been talking about having a ‘Bark Mitzvah’ pretty much ever since I got him as a puppy. I just thought that it would be a fun, cute idea.

Ashley ordered her dog’s outfit online


Trista Wolf / Kennedy News)

“Bradley’s getting older so it’s really meaningful to have these pictures of him.

“A lot of times, people will wait until their dog is in poor health before they get photos done. I just wanted to make sure I got him at his prime.

“He had his own kippah [Cap] and tallit [Prayer shawl], I was able to get them off Amazon. I guess there’s a market for ‘Bark Mitzvahs’ online.

“Judging by the comments I was getting, I have a feeling that ‘Bark Mitzvahs’ are going to be the new hot thing.”

Ashley dotes upon her dogs – Bradley and six-year-old chihuahua Freddie – and showers them with celebrations like they were her own children.

Ashley said: “I don’t have children so I am a pretty ‘extra’ mum to my dogs, they’re the ones who get celebrated and supported.

Owner Ashley was raised Jewish


Trista Wolf / Kennedy News)

“It’s also nice to be able to connect with my heritage and bring it through with my dogs. I know it’s only a little thing, but I had a blast with it.

“We’re going to throw a ‘Bark Mitzvah’ party at the dog park once the weather starts getting warmer and invite all of his little dog friends to come.

“Freddie is going to be seven in June, so he’s a bit off from his ‘Bark Mitzvah’ but he’ll get one when he’s of age too.

“There was no Rabbi involved – there is a fine line between fun and sacrilegious that I didn’t want to cross.”

Sadly, Ashley’s parents were unable to attend but were substituted by toys for the photos.

Ashley said: “My mother, Bradley’s real bubbe [grandmother], is in poor health and is in the hospital, and my dad Bradley’s zayde [grandfather] was staying with her there so they were unable to attend.

“So we had them there in spirit represented by the dolls.

“In the picture with the toys, there is the mensch [Person of integrity and honour] on the bench, representing the rabbi.”

Since sharing the images to Facebook on April 14, Ashley has been inundated with thousands of comments from dog lovers.

Ashley said: “I was totally blown away by the reaction I got. I just thought it was a silly little thing I did with my little family, but it blew up way more than I expected.

“People were loving it, they were wishing him ‘Muzzle-tov’. I saw a lot of people commenting that it was the best thing they’d ever seen on the internet.”

The post has been shared more than 2,500 times and racked up more than 3,600 comments.

One commenter said: “Bark Mitzvah! Just when I think I’m the most ridiculous dog mom, you all prove me wrong! I absolutely love it! Mazel tov!”

Another wrote: “What a noble little gentleman. Muzzle tov,” while a fellow supporter said: “He’s moved from being a good boy to being a good man.”

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