The 17th annual Mutt Strut, sponsored by Gulf Coast Dog Magazine, was held on Honeymoon Island on Saturday, March 14th.
Jump, “Lassie,” jump! - Photo by Ian Phoenix
Dog enthusiasts were able to spend time in the company of like-minded folk for the whole day. “There’s actually a French bulldog meet-up group, and this was one of their suggested things to come to,” says Beth Chenoweth, owner of Newton, a 4½ year-old adorable French bulldog. “I thought it would be fun to get him out and socialize with other dogs.” Beth and Newton found the event to be both fun and informative, thanks to the wide variety of information available. “We’re working on figuring out what food’s best for him, so it’s helped out, finding different food and different vets.”
The event included dog games and a dog walk around Honeymoon Island. Flashy, ornamented accessories for your canine were available to purchase, along with an ample amount of other products catered to man's best friend. Pure Vita, a holistic pet food company provided samples of organic dog food as well as Nature's Select, which sells "human grade" dog food. Dogs available for adoption were walking around, like Sugar, a one year old pit/terrier mix.
Information on how to properly take care of your pet was available at booths such as the Golden Retriever Rescue of Mid Florida. They take in abandoned and abused Golden Retrievers, get them rehabilitated and help them find new homes. Debbie McGhehry from the organization says that most people do not do proper research on the breed of dog they own. They see a pint-sized pooch in movies like “Air Bud” and don’t realize the puppy will grow into a full-sized retriever. Their booth offered brochures with proper care for goldies, with some of that information translatable to all breeds of dogs.
Upcoming local events for pooches include “Bark at the Ball Park” on April 19th, where pet owners are able to bring their dog to a Clearwater Threshers baseball game.