Fair features 4-legged friends, benefits city’s Humane Society

Marci Flory, 20, of Eudora, gets her dog Duncan to do a trick Sunday during the Animal Fair of Douglas County.

An afternoon of shopping proved successful Sunday for a dog named Jen.

“We found some treats that she likes, so it’s been a good trip,” said Barb Gruber, who along with her 10-year-old daughter, Leah, took their dog to the Animal Fair of Douglas County.

This year’s event at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds brought together representatives of more than 30 businesses and animal organizations who set up tables to display or sell pet-related products and distribute fliers and brochures offering advice on how people can make their pets’ lives a little easier.

The fair is an annual benefit for the Lawrence Humane Society. Several hundred people, many accompanied by their pets, attended this year’s fair, which raised an estimated $1,500, Humane Society director Midge Grinstead said.

Some pet owners, like the Grubers, had previously adopted their animals from the Humane Society. The Grubers got Jen, a 5-year-old cocker spaniel mix, a year ago.

“She’s a really finicky eater, but she’s been a good dog,” Barb Gruber said.

Visitors walk past an adoption booth during the Animal Fair of Douglas County. Sunday's event at the Douglas County 4-H Fairgrounds included pet-product vendors and information about pet care and adoption. The fair is a fundraiser for the Lawrence Humane Society.

In addition to buying items for their pets, those attending also could buy numerous baked goods at several of the tables. That’s what attracted Duane and Christine Boor and their daughters, Ann Marie, 3, and Gabriella, 7. Although there were opportunities to adopt pets, the Boors are satisfied with the pet they have.

“They’d like to have a cat, but our dog doesn’t like cats,” Duane Boor said.

Cynthia Glenn was encouraging dog owners to keep their dogs in good physical condition by exercising them. One of the ways is for the owner to ride a scooter while the harnessed dog trots alongside. Some dogs need the exercise to work off excess energy, she said.

“They get bored and they get cranky,” said Glenn, state coordinator of the Dogs Across America Relay event. The event involves dogs and their owners in wheel-powered events. For more information, go online to www.DogsAcrossAmerica.org.