Friday, October 9, 2009
By Lexiann Grant
Everyone wants to have fun with their dog. But when you can play and serve a good cause at the same time, that’s even better. The people who attended the San Jose Bark in the Park on September 19th, along with their dogs, must have agreed – about 14,000 humans and 3,500 canines made this year’s event the largest dog festival in the country.
As part of their commitment to give back to the dog community, CANIDAE All Natural Pet Food provides primary sponsorship of this annual event which raises funds for the Naglee Park neighborhood's Campus Community Association, the Humane Society Silicon Valley and the San Jose Animal Care Center. Admission was free, but attendees were asked to donate $5 per dog to enjoy the day’s activities.
Although the day was planned to raise funds, it provided dogs and their humans with plenty of fun, including a Pet/Owner Look Alike Contest, Dog Costume Contest and Silly Tricks Contest. Agility, flyball, herding, and dancing with dog demonstrations were held throughout the day. A water park was set up for dogs that wanted to get their paws wet, and visitors enjoyed live music.
Nearly 100 pet-related services, vendors and food placed around the spacious, landscaped grounds of the park provided information, shopping and dining. As a service to those in need of assistance, grooming, training help, vaccinations and microchipping clinics were available for owners to utilize. Multiple rescue groups were on hand to answer questions about adopting homeless dogs or cats.
Manning the CANIDAE booth this year were Kim Trudelle and Jim Dempsey. This pet food company participates in sponsorship of the event because, "CANIDAE has a history of helping animals in need when we are able to through events and fundraisers like Bark in the Park," said CANIDAE Sales Manager Kim Trudelle who helped organize the CANIDAE presence at the event and arrange for the prize donations. "Often times we sponsor events where the local Humane Society benefits. Other times we show up to help raise funds for the AKC Canine Health Foundation. We always have a lot of fun at these events and we get to help animals at the same time."
Besides fundraising and recreation, festivals such as Bark in the Park serve another purpose. People who play with their dogs, bond with their dogs. Having fun together is one of the best methods for strengthening the tie between you and your dog. And the benefits of this relationship are numerous: improved physical and emotional health, a deeper commitment to the welfare of your pet, and assistance for other companion animals in need.
What better way to raise money, have fun and do good, than a huge, day-long dog party? Next year’s San Jose Bark in the Park, also supported by CANIDAE, is slated for September 18th. For more information on this and the upcoming years’ events, visit www.barksanjose.org.
Read more articles by Lexiann Grant