Friday, June 15, 2007

Woofstock Part 2

As promised... the riveting 2-parter continues.
Here's a pair of spoiled pooches taking in the scenery before plunging headlong into a cascading sea of wagging tails, wet noses, and of course... butts to sniff.
Last year, we didn't make it to Woofstock, but the year before it was in the Distillery district, which was cramped and provided an entirely cement/paved terrain. This year Woofstock took place just a block north of the St Lawrence market and stretched about 2-3 city blocks in a couple of directions. Among this closed-off-to-traffic area was a park with plenty of trees and just enough grass to do your doggie thang. (as doggies tend to do... or is that "doo doo"?)
First impression this year? WOW even more dogs than the last time we came. (estimated 140,000 dogs - WHOA!!) And among them, more Great Danes than I've ever seen in my life.
These 3 (pictured right) were quietly attending a vendor booth with their owners. They're the second largest dog in the world, and certainly one of the most docile. We saw at least 15 of these gentle giants walking about, and I cannot stress how much I love them. They're so majestic and kind. I'd love to have one, but I don't forsee it anytime soon. For one, they're frickin' HUGE and would most certainly need a domain a little bigger than any apartment we've ever lived in, and secondly, I don't think I could handle the heart-break of their short life-span. They only live to be 8 or 9 years old (best case scenario) and that would just devastate me.
I already think that dogs (in general) don't live long enough. But maybe that's part of the beauty of their existance.... to touch our hearts with their tender neediness and boundless unconditional love, and then show us how to deal with one of life's greatest hardships: loss of a loved one.

Anyhow. These big galoots were everywhere. And above is a little comparison of how a Dane stands up to my boys (size-wise). Hee hee... my midgets.
This was a picture taken during a lull... just one of those scenery-type dealies. ->

<- And this is Cole, letting me know he was having a good time. He had just finished jumping up on me. Which he rarely does.
Woofstock is largely a vending opportunity/public awareness venue for Toronto's big dog-loving community, but I think the best part about being there is the interaction with the dogs, between the dogs, and between the dog-owners. It's great to have a venue where nobody's horrified to be approached or jumped-upon by your dog. It's a mutual-appreciation society of the four-legged variety. Dog owners are a special breed all their own. Most of us are only-too-happy/proud to tell you our pooches names and talk about them like furry little offspring, so it's also nice to know you're not boring the hell out of someone when the exchange is goin' on. And there's quite a bit of that.

<- Hee hee... Dane next to Chihuahua... too cute.

We also saw a great number of Basset Hounds (none of them quite so handsome as Porthos, of course) and discovered that there's actually an organization called "Basset Rescue", because they are a largely abandoned breed of dog. Heart-breaking news to 2 guys who have come to realize how sweet a Basset can be in spite of their short comings, (ie: astounding stubbornness and mischief). We met a couple of the hounds there at the booth and one had only one eye. I didn't ask how this came to be. I'm never eager to hear stories of abuse (if that was even the case).
I'll end this particular post with a few MORE pictures of the boys in the car. We stopped off at Sobey's and I stayed with them while Ted and Tammy went in the store. A good time was had by all.

<- Does this seat make my butt look big?

"We" called "shot gun" ->

<- Hey dad. Whassup?

Who's leg do you have to hump to get the air conditioning back on 'round here?? ->

<- Can I drive home?


ian said...

Awesome photos!

Elizabeth and I, too, are astounded by how friendly other dog owners can be at events like this. Down here in L.A. there are entire parks built, and completely fenced, to let your dog off-leash to run around and be as goofy as they wanna be. And all-too-often, a complete stranger will see your dog interacting with theirs, come over and introduce themselves as "Scout's Mom" or "Scooter's Dad". Very rarely have we actually learned a human being's name, except the first time we went to check out a dog beach before adopting Dakota. We walked around the beach and met a couple who were there with their Labs, but of course I'd forgotten their names as quickly as they said them.

As for rescue groups, I've done some web development for about half a dozen Labrador Retriever rescue groups over the years, and yeah, you don't *wanna* know the stories. When Elizabeth and I first made the decision to get a dog, the first place we started looking were rescue shelters, 'cause those dogs need some lovin'. I guess we feel the same way about kids -- we've always said if we couldn't have our own we'd adopt a kid or two. We only cared about whether the dog was known to be aggressive around kids or not, otherwise we didn't care about the back-story of the critter.

Unfortunately, where we live, they won't let us have any member of the hound family, although beagles aren't on the list. Having never owned a hound of any sort, I'm *guessing* it's because of their howling? I've never read a story of a hound of any sort being aggressive (this place also black-lists known-to-be-aggressive breeds like pit bulls, chows, mastiffs, dobermans, etc.) but it surprised me to see they didn't want hounds.

N@ Lauzon said...

I love the smiley, over the shoulder shot!
HEHEHEEEEE! YAY FOR PUPS! I love the pics. :)

Misster Kitty said...

Porthos, that seat makes your ass look stunning! Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

Woof woof!