Dogs hit Bradenton's Riverwalk for Humane Society's Paws in Motion Walk-a-thon

Dogs hit Riverwalk for Humane Society's Paws in Motion Walk-a-thon

jdeleon@bradenton.comMarch 9, 2014 

BRADENTON -- Paws were put in motion Saturday.

The cause was to help everyone's furry, four-legged friends.

Hundreds hit the pavement on Bradenton's Riverwalk for the Eighth Annual Paws in Motion Walk-a-thon to support the Humane Society of Manatee County.

Mike Gies was one of many dog lovers who came out in support.

"All this organization is good for the rescues, " Gies said. "Everyone should go for a rescue, and the dog will find them. That's how he picked me up. "

Gies was accompanied by his greyhound, Sir Winston, who is four and a half years old.

"He was a racer in Sarasota," Gies said. "He just got off the track about eight months ago. Now he's a couch potato. "

Gies, a snowbird, actually adopted Winston back home in Albany, N.Y., where he had been taken from Sarasota to a rescue. His racing name was "Growing up is getting old," he said.

Dogs also competed in the Doggie Fun Zone obstacle course Saturday. But while Sir Winston participated in Saturday's walk, Gies didn't plan on entering him in the obstacle course.

"I don't think he can, he's too fast and he doesn't turn easy," Gies said. "I think he would get hurt, and I don't want that."

Organizers were very pleased with Saturday's turnout.

"I thought it was better than the last few years," Sue Powell said. "It was the best turnout."

All of the proceeds from the event will go to the Humane Society's general funds, she said.

"Because we have so many rescues from Napier, this will help," Powell said. "They all have a lot of medical needs."

The Humane Society of Manatee County was one of many local shelters or rescues that took in about 300 animals that were seized from an East Manatee County shelter, Napier's Log Cabin Horse and Animal Sanctuary, on Feb. 5. On Thursday, a judge signed an order giving the Manatee County Sheriff's Office, which led the multi-agency raid, ownership of the animals, paving the way for the adoption process to begin.

An eight-year-old chihuahua, Sebastian, that was rescued from Napier was at Saturday's event.

"He was adopted today, and he is going home as soon as the sheriff signs the paperwork," Powell said.

Six of the 10 dogs the Humane Society brought to the walkathon were Napier dogs. Sebastian was one of two adopted Saturday, but the event also helped in creating interest that may lead to further adoptions, she said.

The event featured many vendors, including Barking Dog Creations.

"This is a wonderful event," owner Evelyn McCorristin Peters said.

Peters had a lot of her work on display, including custom portraiture, prints, jewelry and accessories.

"For me, a lot of the work comes afterward since I do mostly custom work," Peters said. "Plus, how can you not have fun with so many dogs here?"

Many walkers and their dogs lined up after the walk for an opportunity to try the Doggie Fun Zone obstacle course.

Michael Perten and his boxer, Trixie, were up for the challenge.

"I think she will do good," Michael said. "He did good on the walk-through."

Michael's mother, Rosemarie Perten, said Trixie is only 10 months old, but they were optimistic about her trying the course.

"She's still a puppy," Perten said. "She loves to play."

The mother and son decided to come out to the event in hopes of getting better involved in the dog community. They also picked up some snacks to spoil Trixie with.

"You get more information about health food for the dog instead of just going to the store."

Jessica De Leon, Herald reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7049. You can follow her on Twitter @JDeLeon1012.

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