Helen Woodward Animal Center’s 9th Annual Puppy Love 5K raises over $72,000


Helen Woodward Animal Center’s 9th Annual Puppy Love 5K, presented by Blue Buffalo and with support from Petco Foundation, returned to the EmBARKadero March 18 to help raise funds for orphan pets.

The spectacular event featured a timed 5K and un-timed walking 5K, an adorable canine costume contest, as well as food and interactive booths, all for the benefit of the pets and programs at the center. This time, however, some very special honorary grand marshals led the pack, making the fundraiser even more poignant. Three adopted Hurricane Harvey rescues, Maverick, Murphy and Shadow, joined the race in hopes of bringing more Houston-based orphans to Helen Woodward Animal Center. The resulting $72,000 raised comes right in time, as another group of Houston pups prepares to make the trip to sunnier skies at the end of this month.

Helen Woodward Animal Center’s fundraisers help to support its 13 unique programs dedicated to the mission of “people helping animals, animals helping people.” Many of these programs have national and international reach. The recent center arrival of 38 Houston puppies, which followed the initial September 2017 arrival of 64 Houston orphan pets stranded in Hurricane Harvey’s wake, made news. It also highlighted the center’s continuing efforts to alleviate the growing orphan pet problem exacerbated by the enormous amount of destruction caused by the storm and the resulting slow-going and long-ranging efforts to rebuild.

This year’s Annual Puppy Love 5K saw more teams registered than ever before and more individual fundraisers, as well. Leading the team fundraisers was Foley Four Paws – Foley and Lardner LLP. The law firm, which has been a longtime supporter of Helen Woodward Animal Center, providing invaluable in-kind legal services among other support, raised $1,025 including an impressive contribution from the fundraising efforts of Hannah Nicholson (the 5-year old granddaughter to one of the employees) of $709.