A DogFest Walk 'N Roll, to benefit Canine Companions for Independence, will be in Hudson Aug. 22 at Hudson Springs Park from 9 a.m. to noon at the May and Clark pavilions.
The event is a family-friendly and dog-friendly walk to benefit Canine Companions for Independence, a non-profit organization that enhances the lives of people with disabilities by providing highly trained assistance dogs and ongoing support to ensure quality partnerships.
Area residents Julie Soroka and her son, Jack, will testify to the benefits of Canine Companions for Independence.
Jack, 9, has spinal muscular atrophy and uses a wheelchair. He received his canine companion, Hoshi, in February 2014.
"Hoshi is Jack's companion and friend," Julie said. "He knows 40 different commands."
Hoshi, a golden Labrador mix, can turn lights on and off, picks up anything Jack drops and brings it back to him, opens doors.
"The dog is liberating for Jack. It gives him his own thing. He's able to be more independent," Julie said.
Julie said it is apparent Hoshi loves his work.
"Whenever he does a task his tail wags like crazy," she said. "And Jack loves having Hoshi as his dog."
The DogFest Walk 'N Roll fundraiser will feature an agility course for the dogs, doggie tattoos, face painting, free coffee and donuts and Gonzo, the miniature donkey.
To register for or donate to the event, visit www.cci.org/DogFestCleveland or for more information, email: DogFestCleveland@cci.org.
There will also be photo opportunities with Indy, a big inflatable dog that participated in the Memorial Day parade in Hudson.
The event features a dog-friendly and fully accessible walk. Participants may choose one of two walk courses: one along the water or a shorter loop.
Rules for pooches and pups at DogFest Walk 'n Roll are:
No female dogs in heat.
Dogs attending must be social and friendly with other dogs and people.
Dogs attending must be comfortable in crowds.
Dogs who display aggressive behavior, as determined by Canine Companions volunteers or staff, will be asked to leave.
Dogs must be up to date on vaccinations. This means puppies must be over 4 months old and have completed their full set of puppy vaccinations, including rabies.
All dogs must be kept on a leash, no longer than six feet, at all times.
Dogs must be ready to have a good time, exhibited by lots of tail wagging, according to an event organizer.