Chihuahuas prancing, mastiffs lumbering, German shepherds meandering, pooches of all shapes and sizes proudly parading all across Australia, for the sole purpose of fighting animal cruelty with awareness, fundraising and loads of four-legged cuteness. This annual event is called the Million Paws Walk.
It was an honour and a pleasure for my family, including our two German boxers to take part in this incredible annual event on Sunday, May 21st, to support the cause and make numerous friends for the third year in a row. While our contribution was small, we know that this is a perfect opportunity to make a difference, one paw forward at a time.
A Million Things to Do
Although the walk alone would be a tremendous event, the South Australia’s RSPCA have once again outdone themselves with versatile activities, competitions, complimentary vet checks, and quite a few fun corners for the kids. Our little ones loved the jumping castle and the face paint artists, so they spent most of the walk looking like two extra pooches in our family!
Anywhere you’d look, there was a stand or two with various exhibitors with all sorts of superb dog supplies, from leads, treats, to event-branded merchandise for “hoomans” and pooches alike. The stylish bandanas were my absolute favourite, although we had to get the tees for the whole family as well.
This year’s first, however, was a pre-event challenge that lasted from April 20th to May 20th, to encourage dog parents and their furry comrades to actually take a million steps, in order to promote a healthy lifestyle and further assist fundraising efforts for about 35,000 animals that enter the RSPCA system every year. Every step matters!
A Million Places to be
Tail-wagging started half an hour before nine or an hour later all over Australia in numerous locations, including Adelaide, Wallaroo, Sydney, Perth, as well as our own Brisbane, and we were well on our way to join the happy crowd a solid hour before the 3.5km walk would begin. The sniffing, playful rolling and a choir of various woofs ensued and loudly welcomed us to the 24th annual Million Paws Walk.
“This single event aims to collect enough funds to help this organisation continue fighting for the cause and nurturing the animals in need.”
Refreshments and food were available everywhere, along with dog agility shows, fashion shows, dog trick presentations which you could take part in, but we didn’t dare, as our two young boxers are too playful for words.
Musicians and raffles on and around the main stage made the event even more entertaining, so people and their pooches had a chance to spend time having fun, educating themselves and even use the opportunity to wash their pets with Aussie Pooch Dog Wash!
A Single Common Goal
Ever since the early 1824, the RSPCA has been fighting against animal cruelty and for improving our pets’ legal rights, by providing lectures, advocating for their rights and providing shelter and care for numerous abandoned, injured or ill animals. This single event aims to collect enough funds to help this organisation continue fighting for the cause and nurturing the animals in need.
Although the fundraising began prior to the event, the Walk is the perfect way to celebrate such a powerful bond and the sense of community that is strengthened each time every one of us makes a selfless contribution towards a world that will treat our furry friends with love and respect they deserve.
Moreover, even those who simply love dogs but don’t share their lives with one can take part in the event both online, or by walking alongside thousands of loyal dogs and their loving parents.
For a single day, tens of thousands of animal-loving souls and their four-legged halves have gathered under the skies of Australia to support this noble cause and ensure a brighter future for our pooches.
Now as I look back on the day, I hope that not too far in the future, we will maintain this wonderful tradition, but only to commemorate our love for our canine companions and teach our kids what animal cruelty was, but never will be again.