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Thousands of dogs, and their humans, brave chilly weather for Woofstock Thousands of dogs, and their humans, brave a chilly Saturday for Woofstock

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012, at 7:05 p.m.
  • Updated Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012, at 10:01 p.m.

Mikey, an adorable pug wrapped in a pink blanket against the chilly day, was manning a pug kissing booth on Saturday at the area’s largest dog party, Woofstock.

He was giving kisses for 50 cents each.

The money went to Wichita Pug Rescue, which fosters, adopts and rescues pugs.

“We don’t turn away any pugs,” said volunteer Darryl Russell.

Mikey and two other pugs took turns giving kisses, bringing attention to the group’s services.

“He’s given a lot of kisses,” Russell said of Mikey. “He’s good with it, but he’s a little tired. It’s been a long day.”

By 1 p.m., the three dogs had given at least 100 kisses to humans attending the 16th annual event at Sedgwick County Park, in the Kansas Humane Society’s biggest fundraiser.

Jennifer Campbell, director of communications for the society, estimated that this year’s Woofstock drew about 9,000 to 10,000 people and about 5,000 dogs to the park.

The event raised $211,000, although donations will continue to come in through the week, Campbell said.

The money helps provide services for the 17,000 animals that come through the Kansas Humane Society’s door each year.

Besides helping the shelter, the event helps dogs and their companions to enjoy time with one another, Campbell said.

“It allows people to bond with their dogs and discover more activities they can do with (them,)” she said.

It also builds a community of Wichita-area residents who love and care about their dogs, she said.

About 90 vendors offered food for humans and dogs and products and services such as dog clothing, toys, blankets and treats along with veterinary and grooming services and animal rescue groups, such as Russell’s.

The dogs participated in a variety of events, such as sheep and goat herding, a best-dressed contest, and canine good citizenship evaluations recognizing well-mannered dogs. Attendees could watch dog training demonstrations and get their photos taken with their dogs by photographers from The Eagle.

Doggie Musical Chairs also drew a crowd.

The dogs and their companions walked in a circle to music. When the music stopped, the owners had to entice their dogs to sit. The last dog to sit in each round — or if they didn’t sit at all — was eliminated from the competition.

“These are the champions of ‘sit,’ ” joked one of the judges as the number of competitors grew smaller.

Finally, a golden retriever, a sheltie and a terrier were the last three finalists.

The terrier was then eliminated, and the black and white sheltie, named Shelby, took first place.

Contact Molly McMillin at 316-269-6708 or mmcmillin@wichitaeagle.com.

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