Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Benefit to support wounded Idaho vet

‘All About Dogs’ is a play day for pets and people

Express Staff Writer

From left, Fran Jewell, Isabella and Mary Stratton gather for the “All About Dogs” fundraising event at the Ketchum American Legion Hall. Photo by Sabina Dana Plasse

The Ketchum American Legion Women's Auxiliary has teamed up with Positive Partners Assistance Dogs to raise money to train a dog for a wounded Idaho veteran. In an effort to raise money for the training, a benefit and raffle, "All About Dogs," will take place at the Ketchum American Legion Hall, 220 Cottonwood St. in Ketchum, on Saturday, Aug. 21, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The day is a play day for dogs and their families. It will include music, food, contests, a dog agility course and dog-training demos. Vendor booths will offer dog-related products and services. Raffle drawings will take place every half hour and ticket buyers need not be present to win.

Entry cost to the event is $5 for kids and $15 for adults, which will include a drink, hotdog and chips. Dogs must be on leashes.

Raffle tickets are $5 each, four for $15, six for $25 and 10 for $40. More than 90 items have been donated for the raffle, including a grand prize item, a 2010-11 Sun Valley Ski Pass donated by Sun Valley Co.

"We are looking for applicants for a vet because we need to custom train a dog for a person's disability," said event organizer and Ketchum American Legion Women's Auxiliary member Mary Stratton.

The cost to train a dog ranges from $28,000 to $32,000, depending on veterinarian bills, and can take two years. Isabella is a guide dog for people in wheelchairs, need hearing assistance or mobility. Positive Partners Assistance Dogs Executive Director Fran Jewell said all service dogs deal with stress of their owners and dogs are trained to be task-oriented.

"An interview process has several parts," Jewell said. "We are looking for someone who has a natural leadership ability with a dog. Dogs perform best if someone is in charge."

Stratton said the "All About Dogs" event is to raise money for the dog guide program and to find a disabled veteran who would have a vested interest in having a dog.

Sabina Dana Plasse:

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