Paws for Cause: Annual Pet-Friendly Events Across the U.S. that Give Back

Paws For Cause: Annual Pet Friendly Events Across The U.s. That Give Back

istock/Dmitry Berkut

Every year, pet-friendly events are hosted throughout the United States, which combine fundraising for animal welfare organizations with pet-centric fun for pet parents and their furkids!  These annual events not only raise much needed  funds for pets in need, they also provide pets and their people with a unique experience!  Two and four-legged attendees get together to mix, mingle, bond, and have fun – all for a great cause!  Here’s our list of some of the best. 

1.  Annual Dog Walk & K-9 Festival
Vicksburg, MI

Hosted for 36 years by the Kalamazoo Humane Society, this fun event delights grownups, kids, and pooches alike! The two-mile walk through scenic Prairie View Park features contests, music, great vendors, and activities designed for families–including their four-legged members!

All you have to do to help is register for the festival.  Every dollar raised for the dog walk helps provide pets in need with spay and neutering  services, food, bedding, and other necessities, and helps shelter pets involved in a domestic crisis.

 2.  The Dog Ball
Huntsville, AL

The Dog Ball is GHHS’s largest annual fundraiser, and a fun and unique way to celebrate man’s best friend and help pups in need. The event brings in well over $100,000 each year, which helps support Greater Huntsville Humane Society’s animal shelter in its efforts to provide the best possible care for abused and abandoned animals.

The first Dog Ball was held over 30 years ago. SInce then, the event has grown in leaps and bounds, and now includes corporate sponsorship participation; two separate auctions, a fun showcase of the best of the best canine companions–the VIDs, also known as Very Important Dogs.

3.  Partners for Animal Welfare Series (PAWS)
Raleigh, NC

Each year, TripsWitPets hosts the fun-filled, exciting Partners for Animal Welfare Series, or PAWS, and 2021 will mark its 5th anniversary. The series features three separate events, each of which benefits a different 501(c) (3) animal welfare organization.

Each event is held at a dog-friendly brewery and packed with pup-friendly activities you won’t want to miss, including raffles, silent auctions, a dog kissing booth, pet costume contests, vendors, and a lot of sweet, furry little guys and gals ready and waiting for a forever home. PAWS events always have a big draw – pet-friendly trips are given away, doggie door prizes, as well as other pet-centric prizes. PAWS has lots of faithful followers – both human and furry alike!

4.  Paws Walk
Fargo, SD

Hosted by Homeward Animal Shelter, Paws Walk is one of Fargo’s most enduring pet-rescue events–in fact, 2021 will mark 31 years of furry fun in the sun! Each year, hundreds of pets and their people come out for a lovely walk and an exciting pet party to support Homeward’s homeless pups and kitties–in 2019, over 350 humans and 210 canines (along with a few felines) participated, and everyone had a fantastic time!  

The event will include a fun half-mile walk, music, inflatables, games, face-painting, doggie wading pools, a photo booth, vendors, and free food and drinks. All proceeds will help Homeward provide food, shelter, and medical care for animals in need while they wait to be adopted.

 5.  Dog Jog and 5K Run
Richmond, VA

Rain, shine, or anything in between, come spring, thousands of enthusiastic pet lovers will be joining in the Dog Jog and 5K Run! 2021 will mark the Richmond SPCA’s 19th year of hosting the event, which takes place at the Robins-Starr Humane Center, and is held to support the SPCA’s efforts to help abused, lost, and abandoned animals.

Walk, run, or jog the 5K course, or traverse the one-mile Dog Jog course with your furkid. If 5Ks aren’t your thing, you can still help the SPCA. You can join a fundraising team, or head out on your own to get pledges. You can also visit the extensive vendor fair, purchase raffle tickets, or cheer on the many folks walking and running for the cause!

6.  Unleashed: Dinner with Your Dog
Nashville, TN

What makes a fancy dinner out even better? Bringing your furry best friend along! Unleashed: Dinner with your Dog is an elegant one-of-a-kind event created to help the Nashville Humane Association (NHA) in their efforts to feed, care for, and rehome animals in need.

2021 will mark the NHA’s 19th year of hosting. The event is held annually at Loews Vanderbilt Hotel, and includes a cocktail hour, a silent auction, and a delicious gourmet dinner, followed by an impossibly cute adoptable pet runway show, and the crowning of this year’s “pet prom” king and queen!

About TripsWithPets

TripsWithPets has been helping pet parents find and BOOK pet-friendly accommodations since 2003. TripsWithPets provides online reservations at over 30,000 pet friendly hotels & accommodations across the U.S. and Canada. When planning a trip, pet parents go to for all they need to book the perfect hotel for their pet — including detailed, up-to-date information on hotel pet policies and pet amenities. #jointheroadtrip