Did you know that there are local rescue organizations for ferrets, hedgehogs, donkeys, and birds? These local groups, vendors, and entertainment were featured at the Great KC Pet Expo this weekend. Hundreds of pet owners and enthusiasts came out for the opportunity to learn about these groups and browse products from local pet companies. The Canines in the Clouds stunt dog team thrilled the audience at six performances. This team features rescue dogs turned canine celebrities in high-energy stunts.
Local Rescue Organizations
Our favorite event of the day was the ferret demonstration by the Kansas City Ferret Hotline Association. This group was founded in 1992 to educate people about ferrets, but it quickly became a rescue organization as well. Today, the group can accommodate up to 90 ferrets at the main shelter. The group provided a very unbiased discussion of ferret ownership. Presenters were very clear in their message that ferrets are not for everyone.
BeaknWings Pet Bird Club of Kansas City was also on hand with several parrots. This group also rescues and rehomes parrots. Unfortunately, the demanding nature of bird care and the long lifespan of many birds cause many owners to give them up.
Lusco Farms Donkey Rescue of Iowa had donkeys and a pot-bellied pig on hand. This organization was founded in 1999 with one donkey. They have rescued over 80 donkeys. One thing to know if you are thinking about bringing one home: you can’t adopt just one. Donkeys must have an equine companion.
Another unusual pet that unfortunately often ends up in shelters is the hedgehog. There’s a local rescue group for them, too, Kansas City Hedgehog Rescue.
The KC Ferret Hotline Association rescues ferrets and educates owners.
Pet Wants of Kansas City provides quality pet food, delivered.
Beaknwings Pet Bird Club is also a rescue organization.
Great KC Pet Expo Event Review
Overall, the rescue organizations were the best of this expo. We also enjoyed learning about some local products. The contests were engaging, but the number and variety of vendors was disappointing. There were too many home design vendors. The Pet Expo should be about pets, not windows and gutters. IThe exhibition space where Canines in the Clouds performed was set up in a corner, and consequently only a small number of spectators were able to have a good view of each performance. The event is overpriced for its size, at $8 per person.
Put on your ugly sweater, put on your dog’s ugly sweater, and head out to Bar-K on Saturday, Dec. 2, for some holiday fun! Prizes for best dog sweater and best dog/human couple. Capacity is limited to 50, so be sure to come early. Flaunt those sweaters!
Do you love rabbits? Maybe you have considered a pet rabbit but just aren’t sure you are a good fit. Come down to Wayside Waifs for an education and adoption meeting. Missouri House Rabbit Society of Kansas City will be on hand to answer your questions about raising a pet rabbit indoors. You can bring your rabbit for free nail trims.
Experience Kansas City’s biggest celebration of pets, pet families, pet stuff, pet services, and pet entertainment. Dec. 2 through 3rd at the KCI Expo Center. Tickets are $8. HIghlights of the event include a stunt-dog show, tips and demonstrations from trainers, contests for your dog, vendors, and more. Get started on finding the perfect Christmas gift for your pet! This is a dog-friendly event, but you’ll want to complete the “critter release agreement” to speed up your entry.
Update! Dogtoberfest has been rescheduled for October 29, due to weather.
October is the premier month for dog-friendly events in the Kansas City area.
This weekend, you and you family can choose from three dog-friendly events.
The Pooches and KC Kids Compassion Project Pet Expo
Begin your weekend on Saturday morning, October 21, at the Penn Valley Off Leash Dog Park near the Liberty Memorial. The Downtown KC Optimist Club, Kansas City Parks and Recreation and DIG (Dog Park Improvement Group) are sponsoring the Pooches and KC Kids Compassion Project Pet Expo from 9 am to 3 pm. Show off your dog in the Pet Parade or Pet Costume Contest. Get photos with Santa for your family holiday cards. Shop at local vendors, share lunch at Food Trucks, and enjoy the entertainment. Learn more about local shelter and rescue groups. The Pooches and KC Kids Compassion Project is a project of the Optimist Club of Kansas City. This group has been helping the kids of Kansas City since 1916 and is now helping the animals of Kansas City too!
Howl-o-Ween Patio Party
While you are out, your next stop should be the Howl-o-Ween Patio Party at KC Bier from 1 pm to 5 pm on Saturday. Everyone will enjoy fun activities and treats in the KC Bier Biergarten. This event benefits Wayside Waifs. Wayside Waifs is the largest adoption campus in Kansas City. Each year, it places over 5400 animals in loving homes.
On Sunday, October 22, Dogtoberfest will finally be here. You don’t want to miss this action-filled day. The event takes place from 10 am to 4 pm at the Kemper Outdoor Education Center in Fleming Park. Register online for demonstrations and workshops, including dock diving, sheep herding, frisbee dog demonstration, and more. You and your pet can enjoy costumes and games for people and animals, like bobbing for biscuits, sack races, musical frisbees, and a dog-owner look-alike contest, among others. Take part in the 24th Annual Tails for Trails walk, a 1-mile fun walk, or relax and browse the vendors.
The threat of severe thunderstorms did not dampen the enthusiasm at the third annual Waldo Pup Crawl. Over 200 pub crawlers came out to support the Great Plains SPCA and enjoy drinks with their canine companions at some of Waldo’s most popular pubs. The event raised over $16,000, according to a spokesperson for the GPSPCA. Top Dog sponsors of this year’s event were Deep Eddy Vodka,OneLife Fitness, Cinderblock Brewery, and Tito’s Handmade Vodka. Participants received a collectible T-shirt along with drink tickets, and some came early for yoga with their dogs at KC Bier.
If you missed this event, you may want to catch the Winter Rescue Bash raffle party at Stockyards Brewing Company on Dec. 2, or the 12 Bars of Charity Pub Crawl on Dec. 15. You can crawl at either of two locations in the KC Live Block or in Merriam, KS. Both of these events will benefit GPSPCA and other local non-profits. However, these events are not-dog-friendly.
About the GPSPCA
The GPSPCA is a no-kill animal welfare organization serving over 35,000 animals yearly with a three-armed approach of prevention, adoption, and retention of animals in their homes. With sites in both Merriam, KS, and Independence, MO, the organization is well situated to serve needy animals and their families in the KC Metro area. The GPSPCA is not affiliated with national organizations such as the Humane Society of the United States or the ASPCA, and it does not receive government funding. All work is supported through giving and through events like the Pup Crawl.
You can learn more about dog-friendly events and fundraisers for local non-profits on our Events calendar.