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February 20, 2014 at 12:30 PMComments: 3 Faves: 0

Dogs Show Off and Raise Money in the "Haute Dog" Fashion Show for Muttville Senior Dog Rescue

By Erin Froehlich More Blogs by This Author

As Muttville Senior Dog Rescue enters its 8th year, founder Sherri Franklin (right) couldn’t be more thrilled by the success the foundation has been able achieve. In their first year, Muttville saved an incredible 27 senior dogs. Last year, in their 7th year running, they saved an astounding 537! Now hopefully, they’ll be able to save even more as this past week they were the chosen charity of the “Haute Dog” (Get it?) canine fashion show, an annual San Francisco event which helps raise money for canine-focused non-profits.

Last year, the Haute Dog show helped raise awareness and $40,000 for “Canine Companions for Independence” an organization dedicated placing assistance dogs in needy homes. This year, they lent a paw to the senior dogs of Muttville.

Wine and hor d’oeuvres were served as 600 guests cheered on the decked-out dogs on stage.  The outfits, constructed by local designers from materials sourced at the San Francisco Design Center, were judged both for how clever they were and by how well-made. Here's just a few of the stylish pooches working the runway:

Cozette the French Bulldog is dressed as Beast from Beauty and the Beast.

Lucy the 13 year old longhaired Chihuahua feels like a real girl in her silver topped dress with ethically obtained lilac feather skirt.

His Royal Highness King Dre of Sun Valley (Seriously. His owner must think a whole lot of this guy!) the Lab/Great Dane mix lives up to his name in his red velvet cape and golden crown.

Muttville founder Sherri Franklin beams looking at Ernest the13 year old Dalmation Muttville adoptee. Dressed in a polka dot cape and glamorous hat - what could be more fitting for a gorgeous Dalmation?!

Archie the Miniature Poodle is feeling pretty slick dressed as Sherlock Homes. You can tell he's loving the attention.

Chloe the 8 year old Cocker Spaniel is actually one of the dogs available for adoption from Muttville. Love her in the beautiful golden Anastasia ensemble. Nothing less than the royal treatment for this girl!

And here's the winner - Coco the 15 year old Porkie rescue.   Wearing an empire-waisted gown and matching pillbox hat in teal silk trimmed with ethically obtained peacock feather from the Dapplegray Peacock Sanctuary this old gal proves you don't need to be a pup, to be beautiful.

Why senior dogs? According to Sherri, Muttville was started because of the unique challenges older dogs face. Commonly, she says, older dogs come to shelters not because of behavioral issues or a move, but because their elderly owner has died or the dog’s medical care has become more expensive than their previous owner could (or would) pay for. Unfortunately, as most prefer puppies or very young dogs, many of these seniors dogs are deemed “unadoptable” and are euthanized. “It’s heartbreaking.” says Sherrie. Older dogs make wonderful companions, especially for seniors and others who are lonely! While Muttville’s focus is on saving elderly dogs, they are constantly hearing from the humans their dogs have been homed with. As Sherri says, “We save a lot of human lives, too.”


For more information on how to adopt, foster, volunteer, or make a donation, please visit the Muttville Senior Dog Rescue website.

And for tips on adopting an adult or senior dog, please check out trainer Victoria Swanson’s article “Adult Dog Adoption: Tips for Choosing the Best Dog for You.”


SFGate: Dogs get all dolled up for Haute Dog fashion show

Canine Companions for Independence: 2013 Haute Dog Fashion Show

Muttville Senior Dog Rescue

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  • Oh my gosh, these dog clothes or "out fits" crack me up - my two dogs hate yes, it's a strong word but true hate any clothes on. We bought sweaters for them because it's so cold out and they just can't stand it!

  • haha! Yeah, most dogs and cats can't.

    To be honest, I was a little worried there'd be people offended by the idea of a doggie fashion show. I know there are people who would go so far as to call it abuse! For me, I've made a few sweaters for my mom's balding Cornish Rex cat, but those are to help keep him warm. I wouldn't advocate putting clothing on animals otherwise unless they were safe, didn't impede their movement, and they happened not to mind them. For a short period of time like this though, some of the dogs might have been slightly uncomfortable, but it didn't hurt them. These dogs seem not to mind anyhow!

  • Genuine human attention and care, and activities shared with their owners is what makes dogs happy. They suffer more if they are fed organic food, washed with organic shampoo and groomed on schedule while being kept in he backyard 24/7 with nothing to do but bark at squirrels. A funny outfit for an hour is not that much of a deal for most, compared to an outing filled with meeting new people and dogs, hugs and wags. And a smile or two on a total stranger's face might get an extra bonus. It's a win-win.

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