City and county officials are inviting area pet owners to a day of fun and education in Buena Vista Park on Saturday, Feb. 22.

City Public Works Director Craig Cook spoke to Del Rio City Council members about the event during Tuesday’s council work session, held during the lunch hour in council chambers at City Hall.

The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 22, in Buena Vista Park off Fox Drive.

“Feb. 22 is National Walk Your Dog Day, and Val Verde County Extension Agent Emily Cook offered to put this event together; let’s call it ‘Pet Ownership 101’ training sessions,” Cook told the council.

He said the event initially had been scheduled for December, but scheduling conflicts necessitated a delay.

“We then decided to line it up with National Walk Your Dog Day,” Cook added.

Dog owners are invited to come to the event at 10 a.m. to register their pooches for a dog parade and show scheduled to begin 10:30 a.m.

Dr. Clay Whitten, of the Del Rio Veterinary Diagnostic Hospital, is scheduled to speak at 11 a.m. on keeping pets healthy and on proper pet nutrition. Following the talks, there will be a question-and-answer panel discussion with Whitten and members of the city’s animal control department.

Cook said the city’s animal control staff will also be on hand for an open adoption event to begin at 11 a.m.

“There’ll be fun for the kids, probably some food, hot dogs, and it should really be a nice event,” Cook said.

Cook asked Emmett Salinas, a member of the city’s animal control department, to speak to the council about some of the prizes the city has put together.

Salinas said he had reached out to local retailers like PetSense and Tractor Supply for merchandise to raffle at the event.

“We’re also going to some raffling off, the pet parade, a lot of contests going on. We’re trying to make this a large event for the community. We’re also going to be providing a lot of information to dog owners,” Salinas said.

Cook said the city will provide the stage and public address system for the event and bleachers.

“We’re hoping to have 200 to 300 attendees if the weather is good, and I think we can get that. We think it will be a great event for our community,” Cook said.

Members of Val Verde County Commissioners Court discussed the event during their February regular term meeting on Feb. 5, following a presentation by Grant.

When Grant told County Judge Lewis G. Owens Jr. and the four commissioners she would likely need funding for the purchase of hot dogs and drinks, the judge and each commissioner pledged to give Grant $100 from their personal funds toward the expenses.

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