Vira-Lata Carmelo on a 200 Reais bill

Vira-Lata Caramelo / Cachorro Caramelo / Mixed Breed Caramel Dog

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Updated May 06, 2023 at 06:02AM EDT by Rebecca Rhodes.

Added May 05, 2023 at 11:25AM EDT by Mateus.

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Vira-Lata Caramelo, or Mixed Breed Caramel Dog in English, refers to a type of mixed-breed dog that is considered a Brazilian symbol and cultural treasure. The dogs have been present in the house of millions of families in Brazil for decades, also being the subject of ironic memes and wholesome memes on the internet.


The expression "Vira-Lata" was used in Portuguese to refer to mixed-breed dogs and started as a derogatory way of referring to street dogs. Over time, the slang phrase became so popular[1] that people began to use it to talk about any dog ​​that was not purebred. That said, the "vira-lata caramelo" could be any dog ​​without a defined breed that has a predominantly yellowish coat. (see example below)



There are countless Brazilian memes involving the popular "vira-lata caramelo" dog on the internet. For example, on June 17th, 2015, a man was arrested by the police and his caramel dog jumped inside the car to accompany his owner to the police station. The video (seen below) was uploaded by @imagenschocantes[2], receiving 16.8 million and 284,000 likes in eight years.

Vira-Lata Caramelo Nota de R$ 200

On August 7th, 2020, the Brazilian caramel dog became a trending topic on social media after a new Real (Brazilian currency) banknote was announced by the Central Bank. The news about the R$ 200 note inspired Brazilians to create a petition[3] asking for the "vira-lata caramelo" dog to be on the back side of the note. The Twitter page of the news website @DiarioPE[4] shared a photoshopped version of the note featuring the dog, which received 52,400 likes and 23,900 retweets in three years (seen below).


A month later, on September 2nd, 2020, the YouTube channel[5] of the Brazilian Central Bank posted a promotional video announcing the official design of the R$ 200 note, which features a Brazilian mane wolf instead of the caramel dog. However, the mixed-breed dog appears in the video as a cameo. It received 92,000 views and 366 comments in three years (seen below).


A Brazilian caramel dog nicknamed Leandro went viral on TikTok around August 2022. A series of ironic memes describe Leandro as lazy and only interested in French bread, like in a TikTok[6] posted by @the10te on August 22nd, 2022. The video (seen below) received 1.7 million views in one month.

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