Booker D. Surfdog, the bodacious bad girl of the surf world, is putting on her retirement jacket, a PawsAboard life vest, and voluntarily sitting out of the huge upcoming Easter weekend dog event to protest “lack of space kill shelters.”
“I think the reason that Booker has been marching around her water bowl with a look that might as well be a protest placard, is in protest of all the animals being killed ‘for space’ in Florida,” says Booker’s rescued human, Pops. “The worst thing we have ever heard is the catchphrase ‘Kill for Space.’ There are a ton of euphemisms out there these days, trying to sugarcoat what is really going on – that thousands of dogs and cats are being put down every month in Florida.”
Taking place March 25-27th on Fernandina Beach, the 2016 Florida International Dog Surfing Championship, presented by Blue Buffalo, is a no kill event. The Nassau Humane Society, as well as other regional no kill rescue and spay and neuter operations, will be on site to promote “No Kill Florida.”
“No Kill means No Kill,” says Pops. “The reason that Booker reached out and teamed up with the Nassau Humane Society is that they are a premier No Kill shelter.”
The Nassau Humane Society has been finding loving, “furrever” homes in record numbers since their new animal rescue center opened up in November 2014. Having more space to work with, means more care and more love, and to date no animals have ever been killed because they are not adopted or for lack of space. In 2015 alone, the NHS found homes for almost one thousands dogs & cats. That could not have happened without the dedicated support of volunteers, staff, and community donations.
The NHS will be hosting a No Kill Florida Village on site during the upcoming event.
“Fernandina Beach prides itself on being a pet friendly community. Anything we can be involved in that promotes no kill shelters in our area is a bonus for our community,” says Jay Robertson, from the City of Fernandina Beach Parks and Recreation Department.
To some, it may seem like an inopportune time for Booker D. Surfdog to retire, especially since the country’s top canine athletes will be traveling from Texas, Massachusetts, Florida, New York and California to take part in the Easter Spring Break weekend event.
“Well that’s why I think she is like Reggie Jackson, she’s Mr. In or Out to me. I never really know what’s going on in Booker’s brain. I know how much she really loves to surf though, so we’ll see if she changes her mind again,” says Pops.
Whether the “Kelly Slater of Canines” surfs or not, it’s clear that the event has captured the hearts of the local community.
In addition to two days of gravity defying, gnarly canines jumping, swimming and surfing, the American IDOGS Incredible Lure Chasing Challenge will also be on hand to wet attendees’ whistles.
“I can’t wait to see a dog friendly event of this magnitude coming to the Island,” says Martinique Lemke, owner of Redbones Dog Bakery & Boutique.
“The Days Inn and Suites is thrilled to be the host headquarters for these Champion Pooches,” says Days Inn & Suites of Amelia Island’s Kari Gardner. “We, along with the many other wonderful sponsors are thrilled to stand up and represent ‘No Kill.’ Being the voice for our beloved animals, standing tall we come together bringing one of the biggest and most unique events Amelia Island has yet to witness!”
“PetSuperMarket® is excited to be a contributing sponsor to this amazing event on the island and will be there giving out a lot of free swag as well as coupons and local grooming tips with Jennifer Skinner and team. Come out and support your local team and help make this event an ongoing tradition on the island,” says John Sawyer, from PetSuperMarket®.
Amelia Island is a hidden gem on the sandy Florida shores. The island’s 13 miles of unspoiled beach with more than 40 public beach access points, including five with drive on access, insures that the beauty and serenity of the Atlantic is available to everyone.
For more information on the 2016 Florida International Dog Surfing Championship presented by Blue Buffalo, or for media inquiries, please visit: http://www.FIDSC.com
SOURCE: East Coast Dog Surfing Association
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