The Forest Preserve District is now taking preorders for its 2021 Dog Park Calendar and there are only a few days left to submit photos of your precious pup for possible inclusion.
You can preorder your calendar now at willcountydogs.org. And if you decide to order extras as presents for this holiday season, they will be shipped in time for you to give them to all of your animal-loving friends and family.
Calendars costs $15, and $10 from each sale will benefit the Will County Humane Society. The shelter has been serving the area for more than 40 years with a single purpose – to provide a safe haven for homeless pets and help them find their forever homes. The organization receives no state or federal funding and relies entirely on donations. Sales of the 2020 calendar generated almost $6,000 for the humane society.
“We thought it was a great way to help homeless pets while also celebrating the dogs that frequent our dog parks on a daily basis,” said Ralph Schultz, the Forest Preserve’s chief operating officer.
In addition to opening calendar presales, the Forest Preserve also put out a casting call for a new pack of dogs to fill the 2021 calendar. Nearly 400 dogs applied; those who have been accepted for a photo shoot will be notified by Friday, August 28.
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More than 300 people have already uploaded pictures of their pups. Last year's calendar featured around 40 dogs, so the pool of applicants will be screened for the most photogenic canines.
"It will be difficult to narrow the field because each dog is unique in its own way and would make a great addition to the calendar," said Laura Kiran, the Forest Preserve's director of marketing and communications. "Due to space limitations however, we have to reduce the number to a manageable amount. But we truly appreciate all those who submit photos of their pets for consideration. Our hope is to get a good mix of breeds, ages, sizes and personalities featured in the calendar."
One dog will be selected for the cover, 12 for each month of the year and the remainder will be featured in other places within the calendar.
Every day of the year, the humane society cares for more than 40 homeless dogs and nearly 100 cats looking for their forever homes. It provides for their general health care, shelter and well-being through its network of volunteers and resources.
This private shelter is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit that relies on generous donations to run the facility and care for pets. At the Will County Humane Society, homeless pets stay as long as they need in order to find homes. During their stay, the Humane Society handles their comprehensive care and medical needs.
“The dogs that visit Forest Preserve dog parks are lucky, because they have homes and owners who care for and about them,” Kiran said. “But not every animal is as fortunate. The calendar initiative is a way to help those pets that are without a loving family to call their own, while also putting our dog park patrons' pets in the spotlight.”
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