Set Off on the Arf-Mazing Race | Adventure #35

If you’re ever feeling blue or just having a bad day, I know a surefire way to turn it around. A visit to the website of the Burlington Humane Society will do just the trick.

You can’t help but smile while reading the “Happy Tails” section of their site. There are dozens of joyful stories about families, felines and fidos finding each other and the impact these new adoptions have made

on all their lives.

The Burlington Humane Society is truly a special place. First founded in 1974, today the organization boasts 400 active volunteers and cares for almost 1,000 cats and dogs annually.

We wanted to support their largest fundraising effort of the year so we signed up to compete in the 2013 Arf-mazing Race!

Arf-mazing Race Registration

The BHS previously

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hosted an annual Pooch Promenade each year at Spencer Smith Park but they were finding that attendance and pledges were slowly decreasing. Something new was needed. After intense brainstorming, the Arf-mazing Race debuted in 2012. As big fans of the Amazing Race reality TV show, we think that this new fundraising format was a stroke of genius!

For a registration fee of $20 per ‘pack,’ humans and their furry friends complete a series of challenges. A pack can be just one person accompanied by their dog, or a larger group of family, friends or co-workers joined by one or more canine companions.

Arf-mazing Race Team Photo

This was a great opportunity to bring our dog, Dexter, on his first Burlington adventure with us. We let Jr Burlington choose the team name: Dexter’s Doggie Heroes.

We picked up our official passport at the registration tent and set off to our first challenge. Each challenge requires a bit of physical activity — but nothing too intense.

Arf-mazing Race Dog Food Challenge

There are ten challenges to complete and they can be done in any order. If there is another team at one station, you are free to move to the next and come back later. We chose to try the “Dog Food Dig” challenge first! The mission here was to find three dog toys in a huge pail of kibble.

The “Wet Dog” challenge presented Dexter with his first swim

of the season. It took him 45 seconds to jump in, grab the ball and get back out. His time was marked on our passport by a volunteer and we were off to the next challenge.

Wet Dog Challenge at the Arf-mazing Race

Next, it was time to “Jump!” Dexter’s a small dog with short legs so the volunteer adapted the challenge to his abilities. This was a great norton email error canadian pharmacy thing about the race — it wasn’t taken too seriously. If a team was struggling, volunteers would think of ways to help.

The Burlington Humane Society Big Jump

Another example of this was the “Doggy Dress Up” game. We were provided with a selection of dog clothes to dress Dexter up in but he would not stay still!

After a bit of effort, and with cialis marketing strategy the clock ticking, it was decided we didn’t have to get all his paws through the sleeves and that what we had accomplished was “good enough.” An official photo was snapped, our time recorded, and dosage of viagra we were on our way again.

Doggy Dress Up Challenge

“Doggy Criss-Cross” had both the boy and his buddy panting hard after they raced through a slalom course marked by plastic cones.

Arm-mazing Race Obstacle Course

Like comic relief in a good movie, the next challenge provided a humorous change of pace. In “Scoop the Poop,” Jr Burlington was armed with a Pooper Scooper and went off in search of plastic paddys. After scooping and disposing of six doo-doo droppings, the challenge was complete in just 1 minute and 33 seconds.

Scoop the Poop for the Burlington Humane Society

One order generic cialis of the best things about the race was seeing so many dogs of all shapes and sizes, colours and breeds in one place. From a tiny Chinese Crested to a large Bernese Mountain Dog there were dozens of dogs in attendance, all getting along just fine!

Fantastic Day in the Park for the Arf-mazing Race

A BBQ offered up plenty of picnic-in-the-park fare for a nominal fee.

BBQ for the Burlington Humane Society

We made our way over to the Finish Line where our results were added up to get a total race completion time. We clocked in with a canadian pharmacy rx world total race time of 7.53 minutes.

At 2:00, prizes were set to be awarded to the first and second place packs in each category (Family, Adult and Seniors). We couldn’t stay until the end but were promised a phone call if we won something. That call never came. I later saw on their website that we were just a bit behind the second place finishers — there’s always next year!

Tally up the Results and Time at the Finish Line

Many vendors also attended the race to lend their support to BHS and to promote themselves to pet parents.

Escarpment Pet Retreat

On our way out, we got to meet a two-legged walking (and talking) doggie mascot. Jr Burlington later confided in us that he knew it was just a guy in a costume because his sneakers gave him away. “The characters at Disney World have real feet,” he said.

Dog meets Dog

The Burlington Humane Society is Ontario’s leading no-kill animal shelter but receives no government funding. As a result, they have many fundraising initiatives throughout the year.

Coming up next is the “Fore the Animals” golf tournament on August 23. There are many other ways to help too. From donating clunker cars and empty bottles to supporting their two thrift stores or making a direct donation — we all can do our part to help the animals of Burlington.

Of course, adopting an animal from the shelter is perhaps the greatest contribution you can make. There are dozens of cats and dogs waiting to be adopted to their “forever homes.” Why not make the next Happy Tails entry a success story about a new addition to your family?

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