Hundreds come out for Mutt Strut 2008
By CINDY JOVANOSKI
By CINDY JOVANOSKI
Times-Herald Staff Intern
DEARBORN — Dozens of volunteers and some 300 dog owners braved windy conditions to participate in Mutt Strut 2008 at Ford Field Saturday.
Organizers say the 3-year-old event has been nothing but successful.
“It’s a wonderful event to celebrate for owners and their pets,” said Anne Enright, one of many volunteers helping out at the fundraiser.
Registration at 11 a.m. was followed by the awarding of prizes for the most pledges to the Dearborn Animal Shelter, the traditional cutting of the ribbon and then the 1-mile walk that started at Ford Field, ended at West Dearborn Commons and included non-pet owners. Pets were provided with treats and water by volunteers and their owners.
Attendees then went on to watch or participate in contests including diving, air dogs doing tricks in water, a birthday party sponsored by Purina, reunion tents and more.
Donors who couldn’t make the event either donated online or by telephone. Volunteers raised more than $40,000 to the shelter, thanks in part to the online pledges.
“This has been an instant success when online pledges came up,” said Nan LeFevre, an event chairwoman. “It was the first time that we did online pledging, and it’s fantastic that we are able to reach out to friends and family across the country to support something like this.”
Businesses also came out to support the cause, including 1-800-FLOWERS, which provided decorations, and Pet Butler, which provided free dog treats and pet waste bags to dog walkers. Dearborn High School band students performed, and Dearborn police were on hand to maintain order and to show their support.
Participants enjoyed the event, even newcomers.
“As my first time attending something like this, I was very impressed,” said Patty Kester, a newcomer and owner of a 4-year-old great Pyrenees. “My sister told me about this, and I took her advice by going.”
(Contact Cindy Jovanoski at [email protected].)