A dog-gone fine day for a walk

More than 2,000 beribboned and bedazzled dogs of various breeds, shapes and sizes brought their humans to Brookside Park outside the Rose Bowl Sunday morning to raise funds for the Pasadena Humane Society.

Ricky Whitman, a spokesman for the group, said $296,000 had been committed by sponsors before the event had even begun.

“Just wait,” said Whitman. “There will be thousands more coming.”

The Wiggle Waggle Walk hosted dog-lovers from the wider area, including Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Silver Lake) and Glendale Mayor Dave Weaver.

Concession stands lined the parking lot with treats for human and canine alike. Mobile groomers and doggie photographers offered their services as various contests went on nearby.

A dog and owner look-alike contest opened the festivities and was followed by a puppy fashion show, with Gatto serving as a judge. Dogs sported costumes from a cowboy to a taco. Even a celebrity dog, Richard, from ABC’s Modern Family,” showed off for fans. Sorry, no autographs.

The Glendale Police Department’s K-9 unit also put on a demonstration, with Officer Shawn Sholtis putting on the protective suit while a police dog, Branko, attacked. Officer Alex Rolando hosted the presentation but promised, “Next time it will be my turn to wear the suit.”

Organizers also recognized some of the top fundraisers, including a team called “The Punk Rock Rovers,” which raised more than $60,000. The top individual walkers, Wil and Anne Wheaton — he of “Star Trek: the Next Generation” fame — brought in about $43,000. Those numbers were expected to grow in the days following the event.

“We are extremely pleased with the turn-out this year,” said event coordinator Milena Warns.

-- Sal Polcino is a freelance writer.


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