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Wienerfest a hit with all dogs, owners

November 13, 2013
by CHUCK BALLARO ( ) , Pine Island Eagle

It was a day of little dogs, lots of fun and a few double-entendres thrown in at Doggie Heaven Dog Park at the Shell Factory on Sunday.

The Southwest Florida Wiener Dog Club presented its fourth annual Wienerfest with a day filled with fun, races and many other activities dedicated to that tiny canine with the funny run.

The club holds the event as a fund-raiser so people can enjoy the non-competitive atmosphere at its monthly gatherings on the third Sunday of every month at the Shell Factory.

Article Photos

Hitchin’ a ride in
the Wienermobile

Webster takes a ride in the Wienermobile at the fourth annual Wienerfest at the Shell Factory
this past weekend. A number
of dogs and their owners from
across Southwest Florida turned
out for the special event.


That didn't mean other dogs couldn't join in on the fun, as judged by all the larger dogs running around.

"Anybody can come with their dog because the Shell Factory has a dog park anyone can use during the event so people can run with them," said Peggy Kay, who organized the event.

The event featured plenty of wiener dog races, a tribute to the veterans that included the National Anthem and patriotic music, doggie weddings, a costume parade, hot dog eating contest and vendors that sold everything from Italian ice to the hottest in doggie fashion.

Nicki Danz of Halters by Nikki had some really nice clothing that seemed to fit one wiener dog to a T. And if it didn't fit the dog, they would make sure it fit.

"I sell custom-made dog halters and harnesses and doggie couture, from a fancy harness to an evening gown," Danz said. "We sell anywhere from $20 to $150."

There were also a bunch of dog rescue agencies, including two for wiener dogs from Lee County and the state.

As for the wiener dog races, they were held for senior, adult and puppy dogs, physically challenged and the Wiener wanna-bes (mixed breeds or otherwise), with trophies and ribbons handed out at the end of the event.

Richard Dunmire brought his dog, Lollypop, for the costume parade, turning him from a lovable puppy to a dangerous dinosaur.

Dunmire has great knowledge of the dog park, since it was him who built it several years ago.

"The Shell Factory is totally pet friendly. The club comes to Dog Bones bar afterward, and it helps get the name out," Dunmire said.

Rae Metz, along with her daughters, Elizabeth and Corrine Bourgette, brought three wieners with her while leaving four others at home, one of which had a litter three weeks ago.

"I had a Dachshund that got hit by a car and I decided I wanted more because you can't just have one," Metz said. "I got my girls and decided to breed them before I got my boys."

As for Elizabeth, it was hard sometimes figuring out if she was walking Sir Chocolat or the other way around.

Sponsors of the event included Publix, Specialists in Veterinary Surgery and



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