(April 25, 2014) Hundreds of pet owners and their four-legged friends will meet on the Ocean City Boardwalk Saturday for the 15th annual Board Walkin’ for Pets, an event to benefit the Worcester County Humane Society.
Registration for the walk starts at 8:30 a.m. at the inlet, where there will be refreshments for people as well as their dogs.
The walk costs $15 a pair and is the humane society’s largest fundraiser of the year, said Bev Sweitzer, chair of the Board Walkin’ committee.
“It’s such an outpouring of love for the animals to see all these people coming together to support the shelter,” Sweitzer said. “Since we’re nonprofit, it covers our vet expenses, our food — daily expenses for running the shelter.”
Last year, around 240 walkers and their pets came out, raising nearly $30,000 for the no-kill shelter, she said.
Walkers can start their trek anytime they want, starting at 9 a.m. They can take the full five-mile Boardwalk route from the inlet to 27th Street and back, or make the 2.5-mile trip to 12th Street and back. There will be refreshments for walkers and their dogs at both turnaround points.
At 9 a.m. there will be contests for Largest Dog, Smallest Dog, Best Dressed, Pet and Owner Look-A-Like, Best Trick and Sloppiest Kiss. Winners will take home a tote bag filled with items such as dog treats and toys, leashes and collars, Sweitzer said.
Cat lovers can also take part in the Cutest Cat photo contest by bringing a photo of their feline, which will be posted on a board for the public to vote on a winner.
Photos should including the owner and pet’s names, address, phone number and e-mail address. The winner takes home a prize basket full of cat-related treats.
Walkers who raise the most funds for the humane society will earn other prizes, including gift cards to local restaurants, golf courses and stores, Sweitzer said.
Board Walkin’ for Pets takes place on the last weekend the city allows dogs on the Boardwalk and many vacationing pet owners in town join the event, she said.
“Just to see the support that we get from the public – it’s almost overwhelming at times,” Sweitzer said.
New this year, the humane society will also host its inaugural “Paddle with Your Pooch” the next day, Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Coastal Kayak on Route 1 in Fenwick Island, Del.
Paddlers don’t need a dog to participate in the event, which will provide participants with a kayak and life jacket in return for their donation. All proceeds go to the humane society.
For more information about Board Walkin’ for Pets or Paddle with Your Pooch, call the human society at 410-213-0146 or search “Worcester County Humane Society” on Facebook.
Visit www.worcestercountyhumanesociety.org to learn more about the county’s no-kill animal shelter, located located at 12330 Eagles Nest Road off Route 611 in West Ocean City.