Collars, leashes and harnesses were the fashion statements of choice in Dupont Circle over the weekend, but with a decidedly canine twist.
D.C.'s top dogs and their GLBT owners took to the iconic circle on Saturday, June 16, for the 14th annual Pride of Pets pageant benefiting Pets-DC. Since 1990, this non-profit organization has helped people with HIV/AIDS care for their pets. Recently, PETS-DC began a pilot program to expand services, as resources permit, to pet-owners suffering from other debilitating ailments.
''It's just a fun event to celebrate the human-animal bond,'' says Chip Wells, co-founder and executive director of Pets-DC, adding that the 80-plus dogs entered to compete in the various tongue-in-cheek categories gives this year's Pride of Pets the honor of being the second largest in the event's history.
See all 72 photos from the 2007 Pride of Pets
Among those categories, with David Peiffer returning as master of ceremonies and Arnold Mixon making his first show as ringmaster, the Best of Show -- as determined by audience applause -- went to Buddy, handled by George Kassouf; with Logan Bear, handled by Carmella Conti as First Runner-up; and Stewie, handled by Edward and Renee Atwood as Second Runner-up.
This year also saw the addition of the ''most affectionate'' category, going to Marley, handled by Raymond Lee.
Those sponsors making Pride of Pets possible this year were the Lesbian and Gay Veterinary Medical Association; Henry McKinnon; Dupont Veterinary Clinic; Doggie Concierge; Doggie Style Bakery, Boutique & Pet Spa; Adams Morgan Animal Hospital; Chateau Animaux; Dr. Bruce Rashbaum; Metro Weekly; Dakota Cowgirl/Titan's Ramrod; and fans of the Washington Renegades. For more information about Pets-DC, visit www.petsdc.org.