There’s nothing quite like the joy that dogs give us, which it makes it all the more painful when we have to say goodbye to a beloved pet. We can’t help but replay the hours spent together relaxing, playing fetch, and laughing at their antics. Most pets -and dogs in particular- love us with their whole beings, truly giving us unconditional love. But, our grief at the loss of a pet is often downplayed when compared to the loss of a human family member. Well, there is a place in Vermont where you can celebrate and mourn your dog in a chapel created for exactly this purpose.

Via/ Unsplash

Dog Mountain, located near St. Johnsbury, Vermont, is home to an inspiring dog chapel filled with reminders of just how important dogs are to us. The chapel is adorned with gorgeous stained glass windows depicting dogs at play: fetching balls, swimming, and getting a lick of ice cream. The chapel features human-sized doors, but also has doggie doors, as well as benches and sculptures of angelic doggies.

Via/ Flickr

The walls of the chapel are lined with layer upon layer of notes, drawings, poems, and photographs that have been left by people remembering their furry companions. It’s very touching to think about all the folks who miss their pets and came to the chapel to remember them.

Via/ YouTube
Via/ Flickr

The chapel was created by artist, Stephen Huneck, who is the author of a series of children’s books all about his beloved Labrador, Sally. The chapel was opened in 2000 and sits on 150 acres of unspoiled land, perfect for letting your dog run around on. Leashed are optional here.

The grounds are open to the public (and their dogs)and the property also houses the late artist’s art studio and gallery.

Via/ Flickr

Given how much we miss our pets when they die, it seems like there should be more places to honor and mourn pets that have crossed the rainbow bridge.

Have a closer look at this beautiful place in the video below.