Paws for thought at Bark in the Park

If there’s one cause I have always championed it’s dog welfare, and what better way to take care of our pets than to support organisations like the Irish Blue Cross, who do all they can to make sure we can look after them properly?

Today marks 3 years since my beloved rescue beagle Archer made his way to Rainbow Bridge after a cruel diagnosis: There was nothing I could do to help him, so on this rather sad day in Chez Doran, I’d like to do something in his memory instead.


The Irish Blue Cross isn’t a rescue organisation, but the work it does is just as important. Established in 1945, the charity assists needy pet owners by providing a veterinary service at a reduced cost. If your dog needs to be vaccinated, neutered or spayed, they will carry out the procedure without sending you into the red.

Every year the organisation holds a series of sponsored dog walking events, most commonly known as the Bark in the Park. There’s one scheduled for this Sunday July 14th at Dublin’s Tymon Park, so if yourself and the pooch don’t have plans already, you should definitely head along.

The Bark in the Park is a fantastic fun day out for both humans and pets alike: There’s entertainment for all before and after the walk, and of course the main event itself. Plus, there’s a raffle, some music, and goody bags packed with human and doggy treats (thanks to the likes of Maxi Zoo and Tayto). And of course, there are some seriously slick awards to be won too, including Best Bark, Shiniest Coat, Happiest Smile and Waggiest Tail.

If that all sounds good to you and your four legged friend then you should check it out on Sunday. The 4km walk starts and finished beside the playground at the Wellington Lane entrance, but you have to be sure to arrive early, and no later than 2.30pm.

You can register in advance and get your sponsorship pack here at the Bark In The Park website, or sign up on the day and make a donation yourself. If I could get my Oz to sit still in a car I’d probably head along myself, but we’ll just have to wait until the gang come to the Phoenix Park on September 7th.

Having spent much of last spring and summer making a radio documentary about the state of the country’s services for stray and abandoned pets, I’m all too aware of how important organisations like the Irish Blue Cross are. They help people to help their pets, and that’s certainly A-OK in my book.

In loving memory of Mr Archer, a fiend of a fella who lived life to the full. 2002-2010. RIP.


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