Tumpek Kandang is a special day for Balinese when they give blessings for the animals, livestock and pets. It falls
on the Saturday of Uye, in the 22nd week of the pawukon cycle and it is celebrated once every six months.
The name of Tumpek Kandang derives from two words – “Tumpek” meaning Saturday and “Kandang”, the Balinese word for the household animals such as cows, pigs, chickens, ducks, dogs, and birds – all of which are highly valued by the Balinese. Tumpek Kandang is a day to worship Sang Hyang Rare-Angonor God of animals.
Cows in Bali receive better treatment than other animals because they assist farmers when ploughing the rice field. The cows are washed and dressed-up in clothes fit for humans and special cone shaped spiral of coconut leaves is placed on their horns.
The pigs are usually decorated with a white cloth wrapping their bellies. The animals are then fed with special foods, sprinkled with rice and holy water and prayers are offered. Various offerings are made to the Hindu god Rudra for successful farming and animal welfare. The aim is to accomplish the harmony of the environment that also contributes to human happiness.
The day is part of a series of other Tumpek days aimed at the blessings of different subjects; Tumpek Uduh for plants, Tumpek Landep for metal objects and tools, Tumpek Kuningan for ancestral spirits, Tumpek Wayang for wayang shadow puppets and Tumpek Krulut for traditional gamelan music instruments.■