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Deb Collins

Deb is a New Zealander, aka Kiwi, who lives in Maine with her husband, Mike, and her happy-go-wiggly Labrador Retriever, Ted. In 2011, Deb launched her own online business. HappyME, to celebrate happy Maine stuff and exploring Vacationland with your dog. Deb will be blogging about everything dog and sniffing out fun things to do with your wag. More at | On Facebook at | Follow on Twitter @happyMEstuff

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The Maine Wag with Deb Collins
Posted: September 25, 2014

Dog-friendly Fall events around Portland that Fido will dig

Keep your paws on the pulse and add these dog-friendly Greater Portland events to your Fall bucket list.

With the forecast still promising 70s, it’s hard to believe it’s officially Fall in Maine. The change of season is delivering some of our favorite dog-friendly southern Maine events that promise golden moments, an opportunity to exercise your social woof and a fun forum to give back to our dog-loving community.

Ted on the Presumpscot River Trails

Golden times with Ted on the Presumpscot River.

Wag for a Good Cause

Animal Refuge League’s 17th Annual Paws in the Park – (PIP).

Westbrook Middle School – Stroudwater St | September 28: 9am – 1pm Register yourself or a fundraising team | Individual: $10 | Couple: $25 | Family: $35

Paws in the Park fun - (fundraiser for Animal Refuge League  of Greater Portland).

Paws in the Park fun – (fundraiser for Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland).

Paws in the Park is your chance to celebrate Fall and wag along for a furry good cause. The annual Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland‘s fundraiser kicks off with a festive procession of dogs and their owners, followed by a parade for adoptable dogs looking for furever families. P.I.P brings together fellow animal-lovers, including over 20 area rescue groups and shelters. If you bring your dog, you can mix and mingle with other local wags, watch agility demonstrations or if you have a dog with a competitive spirit there are fun canine contests and prizes to be won.

Fun for dogs of all sizes at P.I.P.

Fun for dogs of all sizes at P.I.P.

You might find yourself falling in love with the 8-week-old Dachshund mix puppies who will be up for adoption on the day. The long range forecast says it will be sunny and warm so top this off with live music from Pretty Girls Sing Soprano and your Sunday dog’s day out will be a hit. All funds raised help support The Animal Refuge League’s mission “to provide temporary care and shelter for stray, abandoned and relinquished animals, and to place as many as possible into responsible and caring homes”.

A Maine Dogshow with Wag-a-tude

Planet Dog’s 9th Annual Woofminster

Camp Ketcha | Scarborough Date: October 18th, 1-4pm.

Photos from Planet Dog Woofminster.

Photos from Planet Dog’s Woofminster events

If you’re not into the pomp and fluff of the high-paw Westminster style dog shows then Planet Dog’s Woofminster is the show for your wag. Celebrity judges are looking for family dogs who have honed crowd-pleasing tricks, can compete in an onstage howl off or perhaps try out their commando tummy crawl technique for the four-paw limbo. Last year, Charlie the 13-year-old Bichon won best trick when he showed off his Mozart skills on a miniature piano; just one of 25 tricks he had under his little collar. Our Ted was over the moon to win the Happiest Dog Cup in 2012 and literally leapt in the air with joy to retrieve the trophy.

Woofminster Happiest Dog 2012 - Teddy the Bear.

Woofminster Happiest Dog 2012 – Teddy the Bear.

Winners of the different canine categories get to compete for “Best in Show”, with a chance to have woofing rights as the Cover Dog for The National Planet Dog Catalogue along with a professional photo shoot.

For carefree canines, with no interest in a career as a performing seal, Camp Ketcha has rolling grass areas to romp around. Perhaps your dog will dabble in some friendly Orbee-bobbing, think apple bobbing but with Planet dog floating toys.

The spacious inside great room means the show goes on rain or shine but we’re all rooting for a blue sky Fall day. This tongue-in-cheek event is all about ruffing about and having fun but it does have a higher calling; “all proceeds of Woofminster will go to the Planet Dog Foundation’s grant program, which funds the training, placement and support of service dogs helping people in need”.

Halloween Fun For Your Howler

Every dog likes the treat part of Halloween and some wags like to dress-up and show-off their inner-woof. Our Ted loves putting on his Superdog costume and flying around greeting other trick or treaters, like a regular neighborhood kid. Thanks to our dog-centric community we have some pup-friendly events that are all about treating your dog. Make sure your best friend is comfortable sporting your creative costume get-up in public; the name of the game is tail-wagging fun.

Fish and Bone 2013 Howlaween Photo Contest Winners.

Fish and Bone 2013 Howlaween Photo Contest Winners.

Howlaween Tricks for Treats with The Fish and Bone

Fish and Bone | Commercial St, Portland | Timing: Last week of October – further details TBA.

The Fish and Bone, formerly known as  Fetch, usually celebrates Halloween with costume contests and in-store pup parties but this year long-time owner, Kathy Palmer, is adding a fun tail-twister. The exact plans are still brewing like a witches caldron. The inside scoop is that celebrations will include a chance for your Halloween Howler to wag around the Old Port in costume with a trick and treat map, provided by Fish and Bone, for participating dog-friendly shops. Your dog gets to do tricks for treats and once the map has been stamped around town you can bring it back to Fish and Bone for more treats and a chance to win a prize. Check their website for more details, coming soon.

Planet Dog Halloween Costume Fun.

Planet Dog Halloween Costume Fun.

Halloween Costume Contest at Planet Dog

Planet Dog Company Store | Marginal Way, Portland | Date: October 30th, 2014 – 5:30 to 8:00pm.

If you’re all about Halloween, then you can start celebrating a day early or treat this as a Halloween dress rehearsal. Deck your social wag out in a homemade costume and go sniff and mingle with other spooked-up dogs. Best costume wins a prize package from Planet Dog and of course their event will be all about treats.

Have fun navigating these Fall Fido-friendly events and let me know what other harvest season activities you have lined up or share pictures of the ones where you have left your paw prints.

If you’ve missed seeing my other dog-centric posts on The Maine Wag, take a peek, it might spark some new ideas for a fun dog-friendly adventure.

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