Some people are heading to church next Easter weekend.
Others will be glad Friday is a holiday.
I’m thrilled the Spring Canadian Pet Expo is back at the International Centre, near the Toronto airport in Ontario, Canada.
The 2017 event promises to be the biggest yet with more than 300 vendors (really, the focus of the event) in 235,000 square feet of pet-friendly space covering three halls.
Yes, it’s pet-friendly including all furry companions on a leash or in a stroller who are good in the crowds (and it’s crowded). My terrier Victor isn’t one of those canines, so he’ll be staying home. Big open space, he can handle. Unfamiliar dogs in his face, no. You have to know where to draw the line.
In addition to vendors, there’s a dog talent show, groomer competitions (often using shelter dogs looking for homes), Best Dressed Pet event, and dog entertainment such as Woof Jocks agility and variety show. Canada’s largest Cat Show attracts feline appreciation.
The pet-people at the Canadian Pet Expo now run three shows a year at this location. The December show is a scaled-down version of the massive spring event.
Here are highlights from the December 2016 show, a foreshadowing of what to expect at the 2017 Spring Canadian Pet Expo:
Many, many dogs so that means many, many dog photo opportunities. (I’ve only had one person rudely say no and, strangely, they worked in a booth).
Internet ‘celebrities’ either walk the show or set up for their time in a booth. Yes, this included a Juliana Pig named Dozer and Pomeranian Pom Pom Chewy at the 2016 December show.
Not to be outdone, dog show pedigreed made an appearance. I met three-year-old Chumlee, a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever and winner of the CPE Classic Indigenous Breed Champion 2016. His favourite treat? Crumps Naturals Sweet Potato chews.
My favourite product featured at the Christmas show was Hot Diggity Dog’s Kenya Collars. Crafted by Maasai Tribes Women in Kenya, these hand-beaded collars and leashes return a portion of the sale back to these women in Africa through Fair Trade production practices.
Talent Hounds was at the expo in December and will be back in the spring – both times developing content for its new Kids Pet Club, an online hub for children and families that love pets, featuring of course kids with their pets. At the winter pet expo, little ones got their photo taken with a not-so-little snake buddy. Let’s see what happens this year.
Finally, who can’t spend hours watching Woof Jocks Canine All Stars? Agility, training hints and fun games entertain crowds – plus occasionally appearing crowd-favourite bulldog ‘Pot Roast’ is becoming a regional celebrity.
Hope to see you at the Spring Pet Expo in Toronto! If not, which pet expo near you is a much see event? Let us know below.
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