An animal shelter in Peru wants to change the way people view stray dogs.
The Grupo Caridad shelter in Lima has launched a Halloween-inspired campaign dressing up its strays as pure breeds and parading the dogs around the city’s wealthy neighborhoods to encourage people to adopt them instead of shelling out money on expensive breeds.
"In Peru, there are around 6 million stray dogs," the animal rights group said on a video posted on YouTube. "In spite of that, many people prefer to buy a dog instead of adopting one from a shelter and one of the main reasons is they are looking for pedigree dogs."
More than 120 dogs are currently waiting for adoption at Grupo Caridad's shelters. The group said it decided to dress up its mutts as pedigrees because in Peru "everyone likes to put costumes on their pets" during Halloween.
Grupo Caridad is also trying to promote adoption by circulating photos of costumed mutts on social media.
"I can be as faithful as a poodle," says this photo, which includes the shelter's numbers.
"I can be as playful as a Dalmatian," says this meme, which has been circulating on social media for about a week.
"I can be as fun as a Siberian Husky," says another photo of a disguised mutt.
Grupo Caridad carried out its adoption campaign with the help of a local ad agency.
The non-profit is one of Peru's most well-known animal rights groups. Earlier this year it managed to collect 80,000 signatures for a petition calling on Peru's Congress to draft a new animal rights law.
The legislation is currently being debated by lawmakers. It would hand out prison sentences of between 2 to 5 years to people found guilty of abusing or killing domestic animals. Under current Peruvian laws, animal abuse is an "administrative" offense punishable by a small fine.
Manuel Rueda is a correspondent for Fusion, covering Mexico and South America. He travels from donkey festivals, to salsa clubs to steamy places with cartel activity.