What happens when you combine all the best pet friendly things Salt Lake City has to offer in one place at one time — some of the best food vendors from Salt Lake, you and your dog, silly dog contests and beer? Now that’s a party.
It gets even better. Connect all of those fun things with animal welfare organizations working on behalf of local homeless pets, and you have Best Friends Animal Society’s 20th Strut Your Mutt, set for October 24 in Salt Lake City. And though it’s coming up in just a few weeks, it’s not too late to join in on the fun.
Strut Your Mutt, presented by BOBS from Skechers, will take place at Liberty Park from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. The festival’s main event — a group walk for people and their dogs — starts at 10 a.m. This year, a new dog friendly event — a timed 5K run — will start at the same time.
Strutters register to take part on behalf of a participating animal welfare group of their choice, with registration fees going directly to their designated groups. Discounted registrations are available by signing up online at strutyourmutt.org/SLC2015 by noon, Friday, October 23.
Most of the fun begins after the run/walk. You can find more complete information here on the 45 participating vendors, participating animal welfare groups, demonstrators, entertainers and more.
That’s a whole lot of fun for one day, but there’s much more at the heart of this popular Salt Lake City event.
The strut spirit
In addition to a day of fun, Strut Your Mutt provides crucial support for animal welfare groups working to increase the number of dogs and cats safely leaving Utah shelters, while reducing the number entering shelters in the first place. .
From groups that rescue specific dog breeds to organizations that help ease the burden on specific overcrowded shelters, every Strut Your Mutt rescue group is dedicated to no-kill principles. Many are part of Best Friends’ No-Kill Utah (NKUT) Coalition, which is committed to making Utah a no-kill state by 2019.
Sharing the wealth
“The early Strut Your Mutt events only benefited the work of Best Friends, because the coalition didn’t exist back then,” explains Tracy Kelley, Best Friends NKUT Coalition manager. “As the spirit of collaboration has grown in recent years among animal welfare groups, so has the event, because more groups see the benefit of participating.”
But Strut Your Mutt is not just animal welfare groups helping Utah’s homeless pets. It’s also individuals joining in to directly support the work of these groups.
Last year, for example, strutters taking part on behalf of Second Chance for Homeless Pets, a no-kill shelter in Salt Lake City, raised enough money to cover the cost of some facility renovations. Community Animal Welfare Society (CAWS), an organization that, among other things, helps animals with special needs, raised money to pay for medical bills.
There’s serious work to do; however, as previous events have proven time and again, Strut Your Mutt is the perfect reason to have some serious fun doing it.
To register for the run, walk, or join a team to help raise even more money for a specific participating animal welfare group, please visit strutyourmutt.org/SLC2015.