The 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog Pawty sponsored by Susan Hand of Washington Fine Properties

The 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog Pawty sponsored by Susan Hand of Washington Fine Properties
Frasier sporting her “autumn” bandana
The 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog Pawty sponsored by Susan Hand of Washington Fine Properties
left to right: Susan Hand and her parents Lloyd and Ann Hand with their dogs Romeo and Juliet

It’s amazing how a four-legged fur baby can change your calendar. Once upon a time, when I existed on this planet as a single, selfish, indulgent, independent, urban woman, I relished in my freedom (albeit lonely at times). I was not tethered to anyone nor anything, if you didn’t count my Money Tree plant which has managed to survive for over 10 years, amazingly. “I can do what I want, when I want, with whom and for as long as I want,” I bragged when friends had to leave a rockin’ party, happy hour, dinner, charity event, baseball game, or hell, even a Sunday Funday excursion to care for another beating heart. There was no one and nothing waiting for me at home, dependent on food, water, potty time or a hug and kiss.

The 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog Pawty sponsored by Susan Hand of Washington Fine Properties
Thank you to Jason Mandel, an agent with Washington Fine Properties (in the yellow shorts with his rescue dog Mr. Watson) for picking Frasier and me up that morning!

The 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog Pawty sponsored by Susan Hand of Washington Fine PropertiesThen one day my princess/love of my love changed all that. Now, not only am I constantly arranging and rearranging my life to fit around her well-being (and mine) but I am ISO dog-friendly restaurants, businesses, and functions. This past Saturday, the entire day was centered around Frasier, my 7 month old rescue. The first event we attended together was the 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog “Pawty” hosted and sponsored by veteran realtor Susan Hand of Washington Fine Properties. Susan, who owns two of her own little pooches, is well-known and beloved personally and professionally in the South Arlington neighborhood, which has its fair share of pups. One year she decided to put together a smattering of friends who owned dogs, raise money for the Animal Welfare League of Arlington and fill Fort Scott Park with games, photo opps and family fun. It worked so well, it’s now on its 5th year and is open to anyone and everyone.

From 9am to noon around 20 or so dogs participated in games (with prizes) and got their pictures taken by professional photographer Allen Pearson for a mere $5 donation to the AWLA, played frisbee, and as dogs do, chased each other and their tails, enjoying the freedom of being off leash on the giant soccer field. The AWLA also had a few pups to sweet pups to adopt.

The 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog Pawty sponsored by Susan Hand of Washington Fine Properties
Musical Chairs : When the music stops (“Who Let the Dogs Out”) the last dog to SIT was out.

The 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog Pawty sponsored by Susan Hand of Washington Fine PropertiesI figured the non-stop action and sensory overload would exhaust my girl, but to no avail. Soon we were off in our Uber to 9th Street. It was time for a 1pm brunch on the dog-friendly patio at Chaplin’s.The 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog Pawty sponsored by Susan Hand of Washington Fine PropertiesThe 5th Annual Arlington Ridge Dog Pawty sponsored by Susan Hand of Washington Fine Properties

If you know of any gatherings focused on raising money for animals and welcomes them, please always share with us and Frasier and I will hope to meet you there.

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