18 March 2024

Pups off to the pub with free vet checks and doggy markets this March

| Morgan Kenyon
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Dogs at the Dock in Kingston

Pooches of all shapes and sizes from Canberra’s inner south and beyond are cordially invited to The Dock Dog Day this Sunday, 24 March. Photo: JBR Pets.

Bring your beloved pup down to Kingston Foreshore this March to enjoy an extra-social day out, complete with doggie market stalls, free vet checks, professional photography and more.

A joint venture between The Dock, JBR Pets and The Foreshore Vet, the third annual Dock Dog Day promises oodles of fun and plenty of wagging tails.

What began as a small community gathering to reconnect local dog owners post-lockdown has quickly become a foreshore staple. More than 100 pooches attended in 2023, and even more are expected to attend this year.

The day will start with a morning walk along Lake Burley Griffin to The Jetty, weather permitting, before heading back to The Dock, where the Travla beer garden will be reserved for pups and their handlers to enjoy.

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Then it’s all about shopping, socialising and snapping those perfect pics.

Feed for Thought, Howler and Barkes, and Louie Loves’ Em will have mini-market stalls ready to go, featuring pet food, supplements, and treats that focus on proper nutrition and are 100 per cent Australian-made.

Local photographer and puppy tainer Jess Brown (JBR Pets) will dedicate a quarter of her proceeds from The Dock Dog Day to ACT Rescue and Foster (ARF), an association of Canberrans who rescue dogs from being put down, fostering them in their own home until a permanent one can be found.

Glen and his labrador Donnie

Glen’s four-year-old labrador ‘Donnie’ will be there with bells on. Photo: Glen Collins.

The Dock’s Glen Collins says the team always loves to see four-legged regulars and that The Dock Dog Day is a chance to give a little something back to the canine community. Glen’s yellow labrador, Donnie, will also be in attendance.

“Heaps of people walk their dogs along the foreshore daily,” he says.

“After a while, you get to know some familiar furry faces as they get out to exercise and socialise.

“But not all dogs have that chance. This year, we have members of ARF bringing along some dogs who are currently up for adoption to raise awareness and hopefully find their forever homes.”

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The Foreshore Vet will offer free health checks for furry visitors. Owner and director Tanya Caltabiano says the event is a relaxed, casual way to bring people and their pets together. Like Glen, she also owns a yellow lab – a girl called Nelly.

“A common thread with all Canberra dog owners is how much they care for their pets,” she says.

“Every day, we’re blown away by the love Canberrans have for their dogs, who are absolutely a member of the family.

“We want everyone’s dog to live a long, happy life. Twice-yearly health checks and preventative care are crucial to achieving this, so we hope to see many pets stopping by our vets for a free check-up!”

The Dock Dog Day is set for Sunday, 24 March, from 10:30 am to 2 pm. RSVPs are preferred, although walk-ins are welcome. And check out the dogs currently available for adoption at ACT Rescue and Foster.

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