As part of the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, the city of Garland is just a stone’s throw from some of the best dog-friendly experiences Texas has to offer! It also boasts a thriving community of animal lovers, including plenty of passionate people who are willing to step up to the plate when homeless, abandoned, or abused animals need help.
The SPCA of Texas has been helping the state’s animals since 1938. With two shelters and three spay/neuter clinics located in Dallas and McKinney, this paw-some organization has helped thousands of animals find fur-ever homes and aims to bring people and pets together. Of course, as the SPCA of Texas is not affiliated with any other entity and doesn’t receive any government funding. Instead, it relies on the generous support of the Texas community to help pets in need.
Dallas Pets Alive also fosters a strong commitment to helping abandoned animals. With a mission to help the healthy and treatable pets who are at risk of euthanasia at Dallas Animal Services, Dallas Pets Alive rescues those animals on death row and runs a range of programs designed to stop pet owners from surrendering their furry friends. It is run mostly by volunteers and all of the pets it rescues are cared for in loving foster homes throughout North Texas.
Finally, Animal Allies of Texas is a non-profit animal advocacy and rescue organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for animals across Texas. With a goal to build a no-kill shelter to house adoptable and also treatable animals, the group currently engages in community service and humane education projects to help solve the homeless pets problem. Run solely by volunteers, it’s always on the lookout for more volunteers, foster carers, and much-needed donations.
Does your pooch love pool time? Does she love making a splash every chance she gets? Dog-A-Poolooza is probably her idea of a paw-fect day out! Held at Holford Pool each August, this wonderful pet celebration sees the pool opened up to canines of all shapes and sizes. The four-legged attendees have a whale of a time splashing and playing with their pooch pals, and their owners get to have just as much fun spectating. Other event highlights include pet service and supply booths, pet adoptions, and some spectacular prizes! Proceeds benefit Garland Pawsibilities’ mission to increase shelter pet adoptions in Garland, and the cost is $5 per dog and $1 per human.
If you’re looking for an event that gives you an excuse (as if you needed one) to get your pet decked out in a cute costume this Halloween, you’ll love the Howl-O-Ween costume contest! Hosted by Mutts Canine Cantina in Dallas, the event sees canines of all shapes and sizes compete across three prestigious categories — Funniest Costume, Most Creative Costume, and Best Overall Costume. There are stacks of grrr-eat prizes on offer, with winners chosen by celebrity judges, but the focus at this event is entirely on fun! Food and specialty drinks are part of the fun, so get set for a whole day full of spooky, furry socializing with heaps of other animal lovers.
Why take your pooch for a walk when you could take him for a strut instead? The annual Strut Your Mutt dog walk, hosted by the SPCA of Texas, is a massive fundraiser focused on putting an end to animal cruelty. With your four-legged friend at your feet, you can join crowds of other animal lovers to tackle a timed 5K run or a 3K fun run/walk! It all kicks off at the base of the Margaret Hunt-Hill Bridge in Dallas, and there’s always a laid-back, celebratory vibe throughout the day. There’s also plenty more to see and do other than strut your mutt, with vendors, refreshments, and lots of dog-friendly games and activities all day long!
Want to relive some memorable football memories with your dog, and do it all on the hallowed turf of Fair Park’s Cotton Bowl Stadium? Each April, the former home of the Dallas Cowboys hosts the Dog Bowl, a fun and free event that turns this legendary stadium into a super-sized off-leash park. Dogs big and small, young and old alike can romp, run, play, and explore with heaps of new furry friends, and there are water stations and giant “dip and sip” splash bowls to help them stay cool. And when your pooch gets tired of playing, local dog rescue groups, clubs, and pet-related vendors sit on the sidelines to offer information and advice!
Do you love beer almost as much as you love your dog? Do you want to try a few tasty brews and raise money for pets in need at the same time? If you answered yes to both these questions, Hops for Hounds is the paw-fect event for you. Hosted by Community Beer Co., this annual Beerfest raises funds for DFW FurGotten Friends. With each pint you buy helping a dog in need, the event also features food trucks, games, and raffle prizes throughout the night! You can also meet some adoptable dogs if you’re searching for a new family member, while well-behaved dogs are more than welcome to join you and help support their furry friends in need.