IND. CATH. NEWS REPORT:
Pet blessing also took place at several churches in Spain, including the Church of Saint Anthony in Madrid. In the village of San Bartolome de los Pinares, about 100 km northwest of the capital, horses were ridden to the church over bonfires, in a tradition known as Luminarias.
St Anthony the Abbot was a 2nd century monk who lived in Upper Egypt, and was known for his gift of healing sick people and animals. He has been a popular saint in Europe since the Middle Ages.
To see a BBC report on Friday's blessing visit: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-25785955
(Pet Blessings are also held in many countries on the Feast of St Francis - 4 October)