Reining Dogs!

Reining Dogs!

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Mt. Adams will go to the dogs Dec. 8 for the 17th annual Reindog Parade.

The Reindog Parade is an unusual event because there are no floats or girl scouts handing out candy — oh no. This march through Mt. Adams is made-up entirely of decked-out dogs.

“This event is a lot of fun,” says Sandy Zimmerman, co-chair of event planning for the Mt. Adams Business Guild. “You won’t find another place with this many dogs dressed up in holiday garb.”

The parade, which is expected to feature more than 600 dogs this year, begins at 2 p.m. with registration from 10:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m at 1055 Monastery St.

Although it is free to register your canine companion, donations for the SPCA Cincinnati are accepted throughout the event.

“We want to try to help out the SPCA because they do so much for the animal community,” Zimmerman says.

She added that although the business guild is thrilled to help the SPCA raise money, they’ve only been able to collect donations since they’ve picked up sponsors for the event — this year the sponsor is Pet Suites.

The SPCA uses money raised to help pay for everyday operating costs such as food, veterinary care and maintaining shelter, according to its Web site.

Zimmerman says legend has it that the Reindog Parade began on a freezing-cold winter day. A few dog-loving neighbors decided that, although it was chilly and snowing, they wanted to take their dogs for a walk. So, about seven neighbors hooked up their leashes and marched through the Mt. Adams town square.

“Some of the businesses took notice of their diligence and decided they wanted to sponsor an event like that,” Zimmerman says.

Since then, the parade has become a Cincinnati tradition that draws more than 600 dogs and 2,000 spectators each year.

After the parade, there are costume awards given in the categories of puppies, owner/dog look-alikes, group and best of show. The best costumes Zimmerman says she’s seen (not just holiday-themed) included an owner dressed up as a Christmas tree with the dogs underneath dressed like presents, a Santa dog with a human reindeer pulling the sleigh and, of course, biker dogs.

“We think the Reindog Parade is the best holiday event in Cincinnati,” Zimmerman says. “Of course, that’s our opinion, but where else can you see 600 dogs marching through town?”

And don't forget to stop by Koka Coffehouse while you're up there. They're brewing a special "Reindog" coffee blend, and – as always – a complimentary water bowl and free doggie treats are always available.

Whether you have dogs or just like to look at them, the Reindog Parade is sure to be a doggone good time.

Photo: © iStock International, Inc.