July heralds the return of Muttstock, a unique dog-centric event welcoming dogs, their owners, and dog lovers in general.
“Muttstock is a popular event because people love to get outside with their dogs,” said Jaz Rayne, vice president of Muttstock Alberta Rescue Benefit Society (MARBS). “Not many festivals for humans allow dogs to attend, so the option to bring your dog to an event geared towards dogs and their owners is fantastic.”
Rayne explained MARBS is presenting Muttstock this year. Newly created, MARBS allows organizers to work as non-profit charity.
“We have extended ourselves from being supported and put on by one rescue, but created a committee where rescues were asked to help put Muttstock on.” In previous years, GEARS had hosted the event.
Edmonton hosts several animal rescue organizations, but costs of veterinary care and supplies limit the ability to help. To this effect, Muttstock is a large-scale fundraiser that allows MARBS to help animal rescue organizations.
“[We] aim to help alleviate these financial burdens by donating the entirety of its profits to the rescue organizations involved in making Muttstock a success,” said Rayne.
Participants will find plenty of activities, such as a doggy waterpark, live bands, face painting, and vendors. Wiener races, a crowd favourite, will be making a return.
“We will have a bouncy obstacle course, dunk tank, and games for the kids! We will also be hosting a pet food drive to help feed hungry rescue dogs,” said Rayne.
Music is a big part of Muttstock and participants can enjoy a wide range of family-friendly music, from pop to reggae to classic rock. This year, organizers are introducing a battle of the bands format, so be sure to vote for your favourite. Local bands include Escape Goat, Corner Rooster, Sweet Vintage Rides, The Johnny Lemons, Fantastic Dirt Band, Delusions of Grandeur, Evergreen, and Brother Octopus.
Participants can also watch demonstrations. Alberta Force Free Alliance will present “Why Force Free” and “Dog Signs”. These demonstrations focus on pet training through positive reinforcement and interpreting canine body language.
Rayne explained people support Muttstock because they enjoy mingling with like-minded animal lovers and giving back to the community. “We have a lot of people who come from all around the city as well to attend our event.”
Muttstock takes place July 8 from 11 am to 6 pm at Eastwood Community League’s park and hall.
“The event is free to attend, but we encourage people to bring cash for the vendors and to help us raise money. We have a goal of raising $5,000 and we know we can make it happen.”
Featured Image: Much like its predecessor Avenue Goes to the Dogs (pictured), Muttstock has plenty to do for pets and their owners. | Rebecca Lippiatt
July 8, 11 am-6 pm
Eastwood park & hall (11803 86 St)
Free admission but donations encouraged