A Middlebury tradition returned on Saturday. Woofstock: Walk for the Animals, Homeward Bounds largest fundraiser to raise money for the animals at the shelter.
Saturday people took a one mile walk around Middlebury, with their canine companion. There were vendors and a dog training station.
Jessica Danyow is the executive director at Homeward Bound.
“We have 60 people pre-registered and we are expecting to double that with walk-in registrants,” Danyow said. “Pre pandemic we had 150 people walking and 100 dogs.”
This year their goal was to raise $30,000 dollars which they already have been able to achieve. All of the money raised goes to animal care and operating needs of the shelter.
“Medical expenses of the animals to program expenses,” Danyow said. “To special needs and pharmaceuticals and things like that.”
In recognition of having the walk on 9/11, they lined the entrance to the walk with service dogs from that day.
“They were there with their noses to the ground, 20 years ago saving lives,” Danyow said.
Paige Russell has adopted three dogs from Homeward Bound. Her companion dog’s name is Annie.
“And anyone who has a dog knows how that helped during the pandemic as well,” Russell said. “She makes me laugh every day.”
Paige said they have both been looking forward to this day.
“Seeing, making new friends, seeing old friends and walking with a pack of people and dogs through Middlebury,” Russell said.
Curtis Borden also attended the event with two dogs he adopted from Homeward Bound. Borden said he made it his mission to adopt older dogs.
“Their companionship, they are loyal, they just bring out happiness,” Borden said. “The older dogs get looked over and I want to make sure they have a home and don’t spend their golden years in a kennel somewhere.”