BENNINGTON -- Pets got in free at Saturday’s Shelter Fest, the second annual summertime event at Willow Park benefiting Second Chance Animal Center.
"There was a lot more interest this year," reported Brandy Cross, event organizer and shelter feline supervisor. With a focus on fundraising and awareness, last year’s event raised about $3,000 for the shelter, she said, with about 170 in attendance over the course of the day.
A number of new attractions drew both pets and their owners this weekend, including day-long dog agility demonstrations below the upper park pavilion, which housed music and a silent auction. Cross said there were twice as many auction items and vendors for this year’s event.
Well-behaved pooches could sign up for evaluation along the American Kennel Club’s Canine Good Citizen test, a certification that has become the standard and model for well-rounded and service dogs.
The Bennington County Kennel Club performed a micro chip clinic on-site Saturday. The size of a grain of rice, the computer chips are injected just under the skin and contain ownership information that can be read with a universal scanner, giving the errant pet a better chance of being reunited with its owner.
Also a draw at the event was a mobile pet salon and free dog treats.
-- Zeke Wright