It was a pooch’s playground Saturday at San Manuel Stadium in San Bernardino.
From stencil tattoos to kisses from LA Rams cheerleaders, dogs enjoyed a paw-tastic day during the Humane Society of San Bernardino Valley’s annual Walk for the Animals fundraiser.
And thanks to pet parents and the Inland community, this year’s event raised more than $13,000 in support of the Humane Society’s Cruelty Investigation and Humane Education programs, said Jill Henderson, the HSSBV’s director of fund development and community outreach.
Organizers said walk sponsorships, raffles and donations helped make this year’s event a success.
Tail-waggin’ festivities kicked off with pups and their humans walking around the baseball field track, followed by a variety of pet-centered activities including a pooch play area, pet pampering and grooming, and even pet portraits.
Four-legged friends also were able to show off their talents during the annual pet contest, vying for celebrity judge’s Jesse Duran of KOLA 99.9, and Sherlock, the San Bernardino Police Department Community Affairs K9 vote for best dressed, best kisser, best trick and happiest.
In addition to the contests, four special pets were honored as Pet Heroes: Ginger, a Miniature Schnauzer from Redlands; Harley, a Border Collie from Oak Hills; Zorro a Pomeranian from Angelus Oaks; and Calvin, a Golden Retriever from Fontana.
Ginger was nominated by her owner for her work as a certified therapy dog. Specifically, Ginger works with veterans suffering from depression and PTSD. Her talents include being of comfort to those in pain, as well as walking on her hind legs and “dancing.”
Harley was nominated by her owner for the bravery she showed during a home invasion. Harley attacked the criminal, allowing time for her owners to escape. The intruder is now serving jail time. In addition to Harley’s bravery and quick thinking, she is also an AKC Canine Good Citizen.
Zorro was nominated by an employee at Chapman Heights Elementary School in Yucaipa for his dedication to the students as an official “staff member.” Zorro visits the handicapped students, as well as the students in the reading intervention class. His individual photo appears in the yearbook as a staff member, as well as in the group staff photo. In addition to his work at the school, Zorro is a therapy and service dog to his owner.
Calvin was nominated by his owner for his work as a therapy dog. Calvin is a regular visitor to the Los Angeles Children’s Hospital, where he seems to instinctively know which patients to lay beside and which to engage in play with. Calvin also visits assisted living facilities, where a once despondent patient began to open up and talk upon his visit.
The Humane Society of San Bernardino Valley hosts several fundraisers throughout the year to support its programs.
To learn more about its events, programs or to donate, visit www.hssbv.org.