‘Wags’ brings out dogs, owners

Jennifer and David Haney pose with their dogs, Sophie and Wyatt, during the Santa Claus for the Paws event Saturday at Harker Heights Community Park on Saturday. Families could get free photos with their pets during the event.

HARKER HEIGHTS — Families with furry and four-legged members gathered at the Harker Heights Community Park Saturday afternoon to meet Santa and have their photos taken.

The School of Wags, a nonprofit training and rescue organization, accepted both human and dog food as the price of admission and also offered free microchipping.

“We offered this event last year and we had a great response, so we decided to do it again,” said Kathryn Leisinger, dean of wags.

Copperas Cove residents Sandy and Joe Cornet brought their pack, which included two German shepherds, an American Staffordshire, a Chihuahua and their four children.

“There are not a lot of dog-friendly photographers in the area and some charge extra for dogs,” Sandy Cornet said. “This was a great opportunity for us to include our dogs in our family pictures because we consider them part of our family.”

Jennifer and David Haney made the trip from Dallas.

The couple adopted their Neapolitan mastiff, Wyatt, from School of Wags in January.

“There are not a lot of places for us to socialize our mastiff in the Dallas area, so it’s nice that we can come out here with School of Wags,” David Haney said.

The Haneys capitalized on the opportunity, dressing up their dogs as Mr. and Mrs. Claus.

As the holiday season approaches, Suze Kaczmarczyk, treasurer and volunteer for School of Wags, urged people not to give pets as presents.

“Pets are the worst gift you can give someone and they are a lifetime commitment that stretches far beyond Christmas,” she said.

The holiday season is too chaotic a time to introduce a pet into the home and making the decision to get a pet should be one that is well thought out, Kaczmarczyk said.

For more information about School of Wags, call 254-681-4090.

Contact Vanessa Lynch at vlynch@kdhnews.com or 254-501-7567.

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