Hundreds of animal lovers and their dogs in costumes gathered at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds on Saturday, September 17, raising more than $46,000. The funds raised will provide essential medical, behavioral and life-saving care for the homeless pets at Foothills Animal Shelter.
Toby’s Pet Parade & Fair drew a crowd of more than 500 people and more than 140 dogs dressed up in their best and most creative costumes. The dog costume parade participants competed for prizes in categories like “Doggie Diva” and “Most Original.” Winners of the costume contests were:
Owner/Pet Look-a-Like: Persephone C. and Coco
Doggie Diva: Susan S. and Bella
Macho Mutt: Shaun H. and Avery
Most Original: Kasey S. and Chloe
Judges’ Choice: Bonnie B. and Guido
In addition to the parade, attendees enjoyed a fair with carnival-style games, dog agility and flyball demonstrations, family-friendly activities and vendor booths.
“We are thrilled with the success of the first annual Toby’s Pet Parade & Fair! The whole atmosphere for this event was incredibly creative, including seeing such a variety of unique costumes. While our mission of helping save homeless pets is very serious, this event was a great way for the community to come together to support our cause in such a fun and entertaining way. Because of the support from all of our sponsors and parade and fair attendees, along with the continued generosity we see from our pet-loving community, we’re able to care for more than 9,500 orphaned animals every year,” said Jennifer Strickland, Foothills Animal Shelter’s Executive Director.
The inspiration behind Toby’s Pet Parade & Fair is Toby, a 10-year-old Australian Shepherd who was found running the streets of Westminster with his mouth taped shut with electrical tape. Toby was brought to Foothills Animal Shelter for care and recovery. Despite being a victim of abuse, Toby’s good-natured, loving spirit never waned and he was eventually made the official Mascot of Foothills Animal Shelter. To honor Toby, the Shelter created Toby’s Pet Parade & Fair as a fun-filled community event to raise the critical funds needed to support and care for homeless pets like him.