by Lorie Lewis Ham
Bark For Life is coming to Reedley next week on August 14–a fun event for pets and their owners that also helps raise money for the American Cancer Society. We chatted with Relay For Life volunteer Morgan Thomas.
KRL: What is Bark For Life?
Morgan: Bark For Life is a feeder event to our American Cancer Society Relay For Life events. Dogs are unfortunately not allowed at our Relay For Life events so we created a separate opportunity for dogs, pet lovers, and cancer survivors to come together and celebrate. Bark For Life is a time to honor our canine companions and their caregiver qualities. Pets get cancer, humans get cancer. Sometimes the human is the caregiver to pets and sometimes the pets are caregivers to humans battling cancer. Bark For Life is a dog walk with games for pets and owners such as a dog/owner look alike contest, best treat catcher, musical sit, etc… We will honor human and pet cancer survivors, games, music, prizes. Pet vendors, vets, grooming shops are all welcome to be a part of our fundraising event. All money raised will benefit the American Cancer Society.
KRL: How did Bark For Life come about? Is this something specific to this area, or do they happen everywhere there is a Relay for Life group?
Morgan: Bark For Life is nationwide. There are some great videos about Bark For Life on YouTube. Bark For Life came to be due to the fact that dogs are not allowed at our larger Relay For Life overnight events. This is a great new fundraising opportunity to engage with all our dog lovers and cancer survivors.
KRL: Besides the walk, what else will be happening at this event?
Morgan: Activities range from: a photo booth, farmers market, Police K9 demonstrations, small walk to honor cancer patients/survivors, vendors, and adoption agencies.
KRL: Who are some of the vendors and rescues that will be there?
Morgan: Vendors range from Noah’s Animal Sanctuary, 31 Gifts, two different groomers, and we are still currently waiting on responses from vets and other feed stores.
KRL: You mentioned that Reedley 4H kids were helping with this event–how are they helping and how did their participation come about?
Morgan: 4H contacted the American Cancer Society about wanting to do a Bark for Life event in Reedley but didn’t know how to get started so that is where I came in to help. The kids are awesome and are helping get raffle prizes, paint the photo booth background, set up the walking trail, and sell snow cones to help raise our profits.
KRL: I seem to recall there being past Bark’s For Life in this area–how long has this been going on and will there be other local ones yet this year?
Morgan: This will be the second year for Bark For Life in Reedley. Kingsburg and Dinuba already had theirs this season. Clovis and Madera Bark For Life are coming up on Saturday, August 24.
KRL: How does one go about participating with their dogs?
Morgan: Folks can pre-register with Morgan or Donna or they can just show up with their dogs, registration fees, and a leash and clean up bags.
KRL: Do dogs have to be registered to simply attend this event with their owners?
Morgan: You can register humans and dogs prior to the event or day of and sign the waiver.
KRL: Anything else you would like to add?
Morgan: Please help spread the word and invite as many dog lovers as you can. Thanks.
Check out other pet related articles here in KRL.