10th annual Mutt Strut & Pet Expo Saturday

Photo courtesy of the Dearborn Animal Shelter The 10th annual Mutt Strut & Pet Expo will feature dock diving.

Photo courtesy of the Dearborn Animal Shelter
The 10th annual Mutt Strut & Pet Expo will feature dock diving.

Fundraiser walk benefits adoptable animals in the care of the Dearborn Animal Shelter    

DEARBORN — The 10th annual Mutt Strut & Pet Expo is coming this Saturday to Ford Field Park, 22051 Cherry Hill.

It’s a pledge-driven dog walk and community-wide animal celebration day. The strut is a casual, relaxing opportunity to participate in a fundraiser walk with your dog (or without) to raise money for the Dearborn Animal Shelter’s adoptable animals.

Registration is available online in advance on the shelter website and opens for walkup at 9 a.m. Saturday. The walk formally begins at 11 a.m., turning Ford Field and the neighboring streets into an easy, flat surface 2.4-mile walk.

Mutt Strut & Pet Expo is the largest pet enthusiast event in the area with free, family friendly activities throughout the day from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Highlights of this year’s event include:

• 11 a.m. Walk start with Indy the spokes-dog and other dignitaries at the ribbon-cutting.

• The metropolitan Detroit food trucks return with street food for every palate to enjoy.

• Fastest Mutt in the Midwest K9 Fun Run contest.

• Yelp.com VIP Hound Lounge for walkers raising $300 or more.

• Celebration Tent with a chance to meet new adoptable pets.

• Former Detroit Tiger Milt Wilcox and his Ultimate Air Dogs in dock-diving competition.

• Luring-style race for family pets.

• Doggie Fun Zone offering games and contests

• Midway of vendors with pet-related and human friendly items

Admission is free and open to the public.  Some activities for dogs may include a donation to benefit the Dearborn Animal Shelter.

Families without companion animals are welcome.

Mutt Strut is a key fundraiser for the Dearborn Animal Shelter and this year has a goal of $75,000.

Fundraising by pledging is possible with personalized online web pages that teams or individuals can set up in minutes by going to www.DearbornAnimals.org.

The Dearborn Animal Shelter is at 2661 Greenfield Road, and is operated by the Friends For the Dearborn Animal Shelter, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

For more information, call 313-943-2697 or go to www.DearbornAnimals.org. The public may follow the shelter on Facebook (www.facebook.com/DearbornAnimals) and Twitter (twitter.com/” \l “!/FFDAS).

 

 

Photo courtesy of Donna Fournier, Stiggy’s Dogs Caleb and Indy become more familiar on a leisurely walk.

Photo courtesy of Donna Fournier, Stiggy’s Dogs
Caleb and Indy become more familiar on a leisurely walk.

Abandoned dog in the care of shelter chosen to become therapy dog for military veteran. 

Every dog has its tale and Indy’s story is extra special. Taken to the Dearborn Animal Shelter last November, the nearly 1-year-old spaniel-Labrador mix was found tied to a fire hydrant and abandoned. The good natured little dog had greatness in store that was soon to be discovered.

Donna Fournier, director of training for Stiggy’s Dogs, stopped in to the Dearborn Animal Shelter looking for therapy candidates, which are evaluated based on personality, compassion and intelligence. While there, Donna met the dog she would later dub “Indy,” short for Independence, who performed like a shining star in his evaluation.

Fournier took Indy home and began the process of readying him for Good Canine Citizen training and ultimately, his new role as a therapy companion for a military veteran. Indy has recently been paired with his human companion, Caleb, and the pair is building a bond while learning how to work together.

Indy is this year’s spokes-dog for the Dearborn Animal Shelter’s 10th annual Mutt Strut & Pet Expo, representing the special stories of every homeless animal that comes into the care of the shelter. The public will have a chance to see Indy in person at the 11 a.m. ribbon-cutting of the walk on Saturday.

Stiggy’s Dogs, 2610 Bowen Road, Howell, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit group that matches therapy dogs with military veterans who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injury, at no cost to the veteran.

Stiggy’s is online at www.StiggysDogs.org and on Facebook (www.facebook.com/stiggysdogs.) The phone number is 248-667-8364.