Bark for Life coming to Beneful Dream Dog Park

By DREW GRANTHUM

Bark for Life, an event hosted by the American Cancer Society of Birmingham, will be held at Alabaster’s Beneful Dream Dog Park July 27.

The event, which is the first of its kind in Birmingham, provides an opportunity for dogs and their owners a chance to raise funds and awareness in the fight against cancer, said ACS Mid-South Associate Executive Director Kristin Berney.

“(It) was started by Relay for Life volunteers who wanted to find a way to incorporate their dogs into the event,” she said. “Bark for Life events have been happening in communities all over the nation for years. Our volunteers felt like it was time for Birmingham to host its own Bark For Life this year, and the Alabaster Dog Park serves as the perfect venue, thanks to the city of Alabaster.”
While the event was started with the Relay for Life in mind, Berney said there were distinct differences between the two events.

“The event is different from Relay For Life because it is centered around dogs and their caregiving qualities,” she said. “The event is much shorter than a Relay For Life event. Instead of 6 p.m. to 6 a.m., Bark For Life will take place from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.”

That said, Bark for Life events will have a sense of familiarity to them.

“It will still incorporate the Survivor and Caregiver Ceremony and Lap that all Relay participants are accustomed to,” Berney said. “We will add special events like a Blessing of the Animals ceremony. We will also have the entertainment and activities that Relay participants love, but we will incorporate special contests and games just for dogs.”

Berney said any dog was welcome to attend the event, and that the registration fee was $20. All dogs who participate in the event will receive a bandana and will be eligible for giveaways and contest prizes.

Organizers expect around 100 dogs, she said.

“There is no better way for you and your dog to spend a Saturday morning than to attend Bark For Life and help the American Cancer Society fight back against cancer,” Berney said.

For more information, or to register for the event, visit www.relayforlife.org/BirminghamBark