It was a dog day afternoon for over 200 Harker Heights residents and their four-legged friends Saturday at the Harker Heights Community Park.
Emancipet hosted its 3rd Annual Howl at the Moon Fest and donated all proceeds to its Killeen clinic, which provides low-cost veterinary care for pets in the four-county area.
Guests enjoyed live music and entertainment provided by The Party Mixer, Siva Ori Polynesia, and Westbound, competed in the GlowGlam contest with their pets, chose from 54 vendor booths to visit and grabbed some grub from local food trucks.
John J. Braun and his family took their 4-year-old rescued bloodhound, Duke, out for the canine celebration.
“I like the atmosphere; it’s really nice,” said Braun’s wife, Sandra. “It’s a very comfy feeling.
“The music, all the vendors out here, it’s really cool,” Braun said. “It’s always great to meet new folks and their dogs.”
Mariana Bigness and her children, Elena and Austin, visited the Fest with their Great Pyranees-Anatolian Shepherd mix puppy, Dusty.
“We love seeing all the dogs and they all seem to get along,” Mariana said. “I like that everything’s lit up nice and it’s very pretty. It’s really nice for all the dogs and puppies.”
Andrea Nunez enjoyed the festival with her 7-year-old daschund, Poca, whom she trains in Weiner Dog Races by the name “Sriracha Hot Sauce.”
“I like going to vendors that sell dog items because I love to shop for Poca,” she said. “Also, seeing the different dogs and dog breeds coming together is great.”
Grazyna Musick, community director of Emancipet, has hosted this event for the past three years, two of them being in Harker Heights.
“My favorite thing about this event is watching the people really enjoy doing something fun with their pets,” she said. “This isn’t a competitive event; you just come stroll the park with your dog, have fun, and talk to other pet owners. We believe that the more you are out doing things with your pet, it really builds that strong bond and it keeps both pet and owner healthy.”
The event was sponsored by Ted Smith Law Group, Ameristore Self Storage, John Reider Properties, Hunter Rentals and Property Management, Realty Executives Killeen, Ray Watson Electric, and Sharon’s Flower Shop.
Since opening in downtown Killeen in 2014, Emancipet has performed more than 15,500 spay/neuter surgeries, and completed more than 27,500 Healthy Pet Services visits.