The back lot of Pet Hospital in Orange was filled with four-legged friends Sunday afternoon. Citizens were encouraged to bring their canine companions for Bark Fest, a free event hosted by Cal State Fullerton public relation majors and 4Life Animal Rescue, a volunteer-based nonprofit dedicated to providing care and resources to animals in need.
Guests were met with pet-friendly activities throughout the Bark Fest grounds. Among the amenities and games were a dog portrait station, a mobile dog bakery truck and a dog kissing booth.
The event also hosted a silent auction where those in attendance had the opportunity to win Disneyland tickets, a Rainforest Cafe gift basket, a $250 dog gift basket, a Lazy Dog dinner for two or a professional pet portrait session.
Five public relations students in a team called Tied Relations coordinated the event for an assignment in their capstone class, channeling their love of animals into a productive fundraising event. Bark Fest was put on with a $60 budget.
“We organized everything ourselves. We reached out to multiple vendors until we found some that were willing to participate with this event,” said Alexandra Yacoub, one of the student coordinators. “It’s a fundraising opportunity for 4Life Animal Rescue and all of the medical expenses that goes into those dogs and what they need.”
Tied Relations raised approximately $1,150 for 4Life through Bark Fest, a contribution the organization can surely use. 4Life currently has several dogs waiting to undergo surgery, which will be expedited by Tied Relations’ efforts and vendors who helped put the event together.
Alice’s Gourmet Wonderland, Orange County’s first dog food truck, made a stop at Bark Fest to sell frozen yogurt, organic dog treats and dog toys.
“We really try to keep all natural ingredients to limit the allergies and things that dogs can develop on commercial diets,” said Jana Erven, founder of the mobile dog bakery.
Rescue dogs that are now living in comfortable homes made appearances at Bark Fest to showcase the hard work that 4Life has been doing. Callie, a canine who found a home thanks to 4Life, manned the kissing booth for the majority of Bark Fest, happily licking passers-by. Callie was taken from an abusive home by a rescuer and had dental surgery provided by 4Life before she was adopted into a new home.
4Life stays hard at work to save as many animal lives as possible from euthanasia and abusive homes.