The Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rotary Club’s annual Strut Your Mutt fundraiser went on Saturday despite overcast skies and some rain.
Area dog owners brought their canines to Norfolk Avenue for a dog parade, training sessions and a look at a number of local businesses with dog-focused services.
Proceeds will go to the Montgomery Humane Society and other dog care organizations.
The Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rotary Club’s annual Strut Your Mutt fundraiser and festival for the Montgomery Humane Society will take over Woodmont Triangle again on Saturday, May 18 with a long list of activities and its signature dog parade.
The parade and exhibitors with dog accessories, photographers, walkers, trainers and daycare providers will take over Norfolk Avenue from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The parade starts at 10:30 a.m. on the main stage, with prizes for best large dog strut, small dog strut, biggest dog, smallest dog, best tail wag, best parade outfit and best mutt.
There will be training shows and dogs up for adoption by loca rescue groups every half hour and a dog contest, with winners for best owner/dog look-alike, best kisser and best singer included.
The registration fee is $25.00 plus processing fee (per dog) and includes a doggie goodie bag, event t-shirt, and entry into the Strut Your Mutt parade and dog-owner contests. It’s a rain or shine event and refunds will not be issued.
For more information and to register, visit the event website.
Flickr photo by robot-girl
The response to Steve Mulder and partner Jean-Louis Marechal’s Zoom Room dog training facility on Rockville Pike has been among the best the company has ever seen, Mulder said today.
Dog agility classes are filling up and the two have received more RSVPs for the grand opening (set for Saturday at 3 p.m.) than any other Zoom Room location in the country. Based on the crowd at today’s ribbon cutting ceremony, it’s easy to see why.
A number of attendees at today’s ribbon cutting, including County Councilman Roger Berliner (D-Bethesda-Potomac) and Greater Bethesda Chevy Chase Chamber of Commerce members, brought their furry, four-legged friends to the new business at 11771 Rockville Pike, near the White Flint Metro station.
The floor on the 1,700-square-foot main gym space isn’t finished, but after about six weeks of construction and preparation, the facility that will offer obedience training, dog parties and a place for dog owners to socialize is almost ready to debut.
The grand opening on Saturday will serve as a fundraiser for Lucky Dog Animal Rescue and Zoom Room will donate $10 for every advance RSVP received, plus 10 percent of the day’s retail and class sign-up sales.
Zoom Room’s list of programs includes obedience training, puppy training, agility classes, social events for dog owners, dog birthday parties and classes to teach your dog the basics (how to roll over, play dead, sit up) and some stuff you’d probably never imagine:
Advanced Dog Tricks
In this class you’ll learn how to string together basic behaviors from Learning Dog Tricks to really impress your friends. A great class for the busy dog or the future therapy dog. Your dog will learn how to skateboard, put away his toys, play basketball and more!
D.C.-based Steve Mulder will run the center (11771 Rockville Pike) and said a well-established population of dog owning families plus an expected surge of apartment dwellers in White Flint made the location attractive.
“In Montgomery County, there’s a great demand for it,” Mulder said. “It’s young and up-and-coming people but it’s also very established families. We’re a family business. We want to be a family-friendly business. We want kids to be involved in the training.”
The North Bethesda Zoom Room will also serve as a donation center for dog toys, blankets and other accessories. Mulder, who said he volunteers at the county animal shelter, is partnering with the Humane Society and dog rescue organizations to donate those toys and to work on other programming.
A grand opening celebration is scheduled for 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 16, complete with free demos, dog treats and lunch provided by nearby Bagel City. Zoom Room is asking any who plan to bring their dog to RSVP on its website.
The event will serve as a fundraiser for Lucky Dog Animal Rescue and Zoom Room will donate $10 for every advance RSVP received, plus 10 percent of the day’s retail and class sign-up sales.
The center, in the ground floor of an apartment building, will have nine dedicated parking spots, one of the reasons Mulder chose North Bethesda over other potential sites in Dupont Circle and Capitol Hill.
The center is set to open on Feb. 16.
Photo via Zoom Room
Montgomery County has five public dog parks and only one in the Bethesda area, which is causing some residents and at least one councilmember to pursue additional facilities like it near to or inside the Beltway.
Cabin John Dog Park, part of Cabin John Regional Park (10900 Westlake Dr.), is the closest public dog park to the county’s urban areas, where Councilwoman Valerie Ervin (D-Silver Spring) has argued a growing population of families and others with dogs need more facilities.
At a Planning, Housing and Economic Development Committee meeting today, Montgomery County Parks officials presented their 2012 Park Recreation and Open Space (PROS) Plan. In it is a recommendation for 12 new dog parks (or 24 acres of dog park) by 2022.
A Parks official told the committee those would likely go inside the Beltway in areas such as Bethesda or Silver Spring, where Ervin is pushing for a dog park.
Parks staff discussed an “urban dog park,” which in a smaller available downcounty park space would operate differently than the Cabin John or Wheaton Parks, both located within wide open Regional Parks.
A resident at the hearing suggested the idea of opening up County parks to dogs without leashes before 9 a.m., as is the case in New York City’s Central Park.
Councilwoman Nancy Floreen (D-At large) of Garrett Park said the County’s dog park permitting regulations can be obtrusive. Permits are required for the use of all dog parks managed by M-NCPPC Montgomery Parks.
A Parks survey of need included in the PROS Plan showed dog parks at No. 11, behind facilities including indoor swim centers, natural and hard surface trails and natural areas.
Flickr photo by yakfur
St. John’s Episcopal Church (6701 Wisconsin Ave.) will have its annual “Blessing of the Animals” and pet adoption fair on Sunday to mark the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals.
Anybody with a pet is invited to bring their animal to the church for a special blessing at about 5 p.m., after the adoption event, which will run from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Susan Pizza, a church member and event organizer, said St. John’s clergy will offer individual blessings for each pet and dogs and cats will receive a special souvenir. All are welcome, regardless of their religious views.
Pizza, who owns a number of cats, described the connection she has developed with her pets as a reason for staging the event.
“I always have to start with the thought of unconditional love,” Pizza said. “It doesn’t matter what kind of lousy mood I’m in. They love me. It’s that companionship, the comfort they bring when things aren’t going well.”
More than 60 people braved poor weather conditions at last year’s Blessing, and Pizza is hoping for closer to 100 attendees this weekend.
It’s not the only church that will be celebrating its pets.
In Silver Spring, the St. Mary Magdalene Episcopal Church will have a Blessing of the Animals. The church is located next to the Aspin Hill pet cemetery, known as the burial ground for such famous pets as J. Edgar Hoover’s dog Spee-de-Bozo and General Grant Jiggs of “Little Rascals” fame.
“I think it’s to celebrate not only the animals that touch our lives but also the whole of creation,” Pizza said. “It brings you a connection to another being.”
The Montgomery County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Pet Connect and The Metropolitan Guinea Pig Rescue will run the adoption fair.
For $15 a person or $25 a couple, attendees can bring their dogs to the outdoor seating area at Redwood and get food and drink specials and gourmet doggie treats from sponsor Bone Jour (4927A St. Elmo Ave.).
“Well-behaved dogs only on leashes,” will be allowed.
“Bark & Wine” is not alone in the bring-your-doggie-to-dinner department. Mia’s Pizzas (4926 Cordell Ave.) is bringing back their popular “Puppies on the Patio” on Sunday, so dog owners into such events will have two chances in the next few days.
For more information, visit the official event website.
Flickr photo by cpdulis
For each customer who brings a dog to the upscale pizzeria’s outdoor seating area, Mia’s Pizzas will make a $5 donation to The Humane Society.
They’ll also post a shot of each dog on their Facebook page.
The restaurant hopes to have a new batch of wood fired pizza options and other items rolled out by the event, which will also include $2 off drafts and glasses of sangria and a lasagna Sunday night special after 4 p.m.
For more information, visit the the restaurant’s website.