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Beacon Barks and the dressing up of dogs

Yesterday I went to my first Beacon Barks parade with my greyhound Jessie. It was a fantastic event: well organised, well attended, and for a laudable cause. I had one big problem, however - not with the event, but with some of the attendees. By midday the sun was blazing and it must have been over 80 degrees. I took Jessie home at that point, as she was clearly too hot. To my dismay I saw countless poor, panting dogs swathed in thick outfits of every description - bonnets and bandanas, pants and sweaters, bootees and ruffles. Dogs have no sweat glands and are reliant on panting to keep them cool. To heat their furry bodies further by covering them from head to toe in additional layers, in 80 degree heat, isn't putting the welfare of your dog first. Maybe the organisers, who did such a fine job on the day, could respectfully ask people not to dress up their dogs if it's going to be a hot day. It's really a no-brainer for an event that's so fundamentally about raising awareness for animal welfare.

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Tags: animal, barks, beacon, dogs, welfare

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Comment by Henry on April 27, 2009 at 8:48pm
I was there, naked as the day I was born (except for my collar) free and easy!
Comment by Leroy Williams on April 27, 2009 at 8:42pm
You can't please every one.
Comment by The Little Brit on April 27, 2009 at 9:01am
To update this thread I have heard back from Libbi and Nanci at the Barkery. They say that they fully agree that these things need to be better monitored in the future, that they are on the same page on this topic, and that they will make sure in the future that this will be addressed. A very positive and welcome response.
Comment by The Little Brit on April 26, 2009 at 6:20pm
Indeed, which is why I contacted the organisers to voice my concern (although it seems self-evident that dressing up a dog when it's already really hot outside would make the dog less comfortable, not more). I'm not sure why you'd assume I hadn't.
Comment by The Little Brit on April 26, 2009 at 2:01pm
I saw the flyers, but how about addressing my point? Yesterday's heat was going to make it challenging enough to keep one's dog comfortable while being walked up and down Main Street for two or three hours, without asking them to cope with additional layers of clothing on top of their fur. A bandana round the neck is one thing, but some dogs were trussed up from nose to paws and this inevitably compromised their welfare in such temperatures. Is winning a Best Costume prize more important?

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