River Dogs!

By on 6 September, 2012 in Fun, Karren Pell, Outdoors, Pets with 2 Comments

Photo by Karren Pell

Last weekend I performed as part of the 75th anniversary of the Coon Dog Cemetery. We had a fabulous time and shared the stage with some great musicians including Muscle Shoals’ Travis Wammack. The cemetery is outside of Tuscumbia and about a four hour ride from Montgomery, so we went up the night before the big celebration on Labor Day. We had planned to take our three dogs to enjoy the day with us, but none of the motels in the vicinity would allow us to have our dogs! Doggone it! So we had to leave them with our fabulous pet sitter, Paula Wohlscheid. Sweeney Lou, Dolly, and Sam were extremely bummed out that they could not attend the gala. We promised to somehow make it up to them.

Then Tim saw the article in the Montgomery Advertiser on the upcoming “Coosa River Dog Fest.” This fabulous event will be held from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Saturday at the Coosa Outdoor Center on 172 River Road in Wetumpka. Now I know this blog usually focuses on happenings in Midtown Montgomery, but if you are hip enough to live in Midtown Montgomery, you are close enough to Wetumpka.

The organizer of the day, Frank Chitwood, was inspired by his own dog Youk, a Siberian Husky rescue, who was at first wary of water, but is now a bonafide “river dog.” Frank’s day gig is a full time “river keeper” with the Coosa Riverkeepers. His duties include protecting the Coosa from pollution, finding and reporting illegal pollution, and conducting research. Frank says that although some dogs might be shy around the water at first, dogs are naturally attracted to water and will come to enjoy water activities.

Dog Fest 2012 is sponsored by the Petco Foundation and the Siberian Husky Rescue of America. All breeds are welcome to get their humans in tow and come enjoy a “walk around and have fun kind of day. ” A variety of activities are planned including clinics, demonstrations, fun and games, and cool dog stuff for sale. Check out www.riverdogfest.com for more info.

Sweeney Lou is excited because her friend Granger and her Aunt Carole are coming too. We are actively shopping for a life vest for Sweeney Lou  and Granger (They say they want to paddle a canoe). I sometimes wish Sweeney was not so fearless, but what is a mother to do?

See ya’ on the river!

Karren Pell is a writer, teacher, and performer who lives with her husband, Tim Henderson, and an assortment of cats and dogs in Capitol Heights. She is the author of three books. Her musical compositions range from commercial songs to theatrical works, with five musical adaptations to her credit.

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  1. Thanks for this great article Karren. The event is actually co-organized by Alabama Siberian Husky Rescue, where Youk was adopted from. ASHR is a great, relatively new rescue that has found for about 50 huskies in the past two years they’ve been together! April Mitchem is the leader over there and she has done most of the work to put together this great event, but the cuteness of my dog Youk tends to steal any credit in the paper! Our other sponsors are Coosa Outdoor Center, Southeastern Business Printers, Global Services and Leigh’s Lotus Photography (who will be photographing dogs at the event!). We can’t wait to see you there. Come early and bring a rain jacket, scattered showers predicted for the late afternoon.

  2. Thanks for including our event! We at Alabama Siberian Husky Rescue are very excited to host this event in conjunction with Coosa Riverkeeper. We hope everyone will come out and Get Muddy with their Best Buddy!

    April Mitchem
    Alabama Siberian Husky Rescue

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