Dog lovers brought their pets out to play Saturday for the third annual Mutts on Main event in the downtown Gainesville square, where there were pet contests, vendors and a fashion show for dogs.
Vendors like Fetching Friends and Creative Mutt sold items like collars and bandanas, while some vendors like Mary Puppins sold treats.
The Hall County Animal Shelter was there, too, looking for dog lovers to take home a new friend — or seven. Its members brought eight dogs along, mostly puppies who were recent arrivals to the shelter.
Some of the dogs were even used as part of the event’s fashion show, which showcased items from local stores like Dress Up Boutique, Fashion Ten Below and District 101.
Within the first hour of the event, three of the eight dogs found a new home.
Star, a black and white spotted lab/hound mix, went home with the Walkers. The four-month-old puppy was the first of the three adopted, and her new family knew they had to take her home with them as soon as they saw her.
“It’s almost like going to test-drive a car,” Lori Walker said. “You know you’re going to walk away with one.”
The Walkers were on the hunt for a dog, and Lori’s friend tagged her on the Facebook page of the event, urging her to go. She took her friend’s advice and left with a new member of the family.
For $85, they walked away with their new puppy. The fee includes spay/neutering, a microchip, vet screening, a first round of vaccinations and a rabies vaccination.
Mary Knapp and Martin Bear were just getting coffee in the square when they set their eyes on Char, a 1½ year old terrier mix. Knapp, who lives in Birmingham, Ala., was on her way to meet with her parents and decided to check out the adoptable dogs.
That’s when she fell in love with the scruffy black dog and decided to take her home.
“I can’t wait to buy her toys,” Knapp said. “I’m going to get her some pink clothes and a collar.”
Another dog, 3-year-old border collie mix Pilot, went home with Gainesville resident Joan Conrad.
“He’s going home with me today,” Conrad said, scratching behind the dog’s ears.
While these three dogs are now off the market, there are plenty of other animals available for adoption at the shelter.
“(The event) is a great way for us to showcase our great adoptable animals,” said Cindy Langman, program coordinator for the shelter.
Additional animals and information can be found on the shelter’s website.