With gorgeous beaches and fine weather, Jacksonville is a great place to experience everything Florida has to offer. But don’t keep it all to yourself! Bring your pet along for an added adventure and extra laughs. There are a number of annual events in the city catering to those who just can’t leave their furry best friends behind. Read on to discover the seven best pet-friendly events in Jacksonville!
Jacksonville Pet Expo
One of the best pet-friendly events in Jacksonville is the annual Jacksonville pet expo, north Florida’s largest pet expo. It offers pet-friendly fun to locals and visitors alike. It takes place in the spring and is open to anyone who loves to get out and have a good time with their pet. As dates vary, you’ll want to keep an eye on their website for details.
The expo has offered a variety of activities in the past. These include pet adoptions, grooming shows, and animal shows. They also showcase exhibitors for pet services and a variety of pet experts. Enter your pet in the “Best Dog & Cat Contest” for a chance to win! Visitors can purchase tickets to the expo for either one or two days.
Pets are welcome to attend as long as they are leashed. Visit the Jacksonville pet expo’s website for more information on upcoming events.
Family Pet Fair & Blessing of the Pets
Every year, St. Philip Neri Animal Ministry offers the Family Pet Fair & Blessing of the pets for those wanting a day out with their best friends. As the ministry’s largest fundraiser, it’s a terrific way for pet owners to support the well-being of animals in the Jacksonville community while also having a great time.
The pet fair features food trucks, vendors, and adoptable pets. It also hosts the “Best in Show” contest with categories such as “Best Little Dog,” “Best Kisser,” “Best Senior,” and “Best Under-Bite.” The “Ask the Trainer” booth offers free dog training advice from a professional trainer. Animal-themed kids’ activities make the day family-friendly as well as pet-friendly. And yes, you can have your pet blessed by a bishop!
Tides and Tails
Among the best pet-friendly events in Jacksonville is Tides and Tails, an annual event held by the Jacksonville Humane Society to raise money for its pet help center. Advertised as a “beachside happy hour with your furry friends,” the event features a chance to soak up the sun with your pet while sipping a glass of beer or wine.
Not only is there a chance to win a prize in the auction, but you can also visit the treat bar for dog snacks and human hors d’oeuvres. You don’t have to bring a pet to attend, but they are more than welcome! The limit is one pet per person.
For more information on upcoming Tides and Tails events, visit the Jacksonville Humane Society’s website. You can also visit their location at 8464 Beach Boulevard or call them at 904-725-8766.
The Jacksonville Humane Society also hosts an annual Mutt Market in the spring. Both dogs and cats can enjoy this event with their owners, though humans are free to attend without a pet if they wish.
The Mutt Market features free adoptions for the day and a chance for pet owners to interact with the Humane Society’s community partners. It also hosts a number of vendors offering doggie massages, treats, and merchandise. A raffle gives attendees the chance to win pet-themed prizes.
There is no cost of admission, but donations are always welcome. Visit the Jacksonville Humane Society website and check out their events page for upcoming Mutt Markets. You can also visit their location at 8464 Beach Boulevard or call them at 904-725-8766.
Kanine Social Pawty
For those wanting to host their own dog-friendly event in Jacksonville, Kanine Social is a great option! They offer a private meeting space for those wishing to throw a puppy “pawty,” including birthday parties and breed-specific events. Their staff is available to help organize the party and offer suggestions. They also provide drinks like beer, wine, kombucha, cider, and coffee.
Check out the Kanine Social website to find out more information and make a reservation. You can also call them at 904-712-6363.
Hops, Hounds, and Halloween 5K
Kanine Social hosts another annual event, their Hops, Hounds, and Halloween 5K. The event raises money for the Jacksonville Humane Society. Dogs can join in the run or play at Kanine Social’s private dog park. A dedicated dog lane is available for those with pets who wish to use it.
Kanine Social encourages both pets and owners to show up in fun costumes for the doggie costume contest. Following the contest, the race begins. After, there is a party with live music and an awards ceremony. Various vendors and food trucks provide merchandise and delicious fare for hungry racers.
For information on upcoming Hops, Hounds, and Halloween 5K events, visit Kanine Social’s website and check out their events page. You can also call them at 904-712-6363.
DogFest is a fundraising event for Canine Companions, an organization providing service dogs for people with disabilities. This event offers a dog-friendly day of fun activities including dog demonstrations, speakers, and live music.
Registration is free; however, donations are welcome in support of those with disabilities needing a practical canine companion. Registrants are encouraged to fundraise themselves for the event with a personal fundraising page. They may also join a personal or corporate team for the event.
Make sure to check out any of the above pet-friendly events in Jacksonville for a chance to have some fun with your furry friend. To keep on top of similar events happening in Jacksonville, check out the BringFido website.
The photo featured at the top of this post is © Imfoto/Shutterstock.com
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