Can you believe it? The Rose Parade, which is held each year in Pasadena, California, is celebrating its 129th year. When I lived in Southern California, I knew people who would camp out to watch it in person or make a trek up after the parade to see all the floats. Unfortunately, it was something I never got to do, but I do enjoy watching it on television, especially since you always see some dogs in the parade.
This year, the parade starts at 8 a.m. on January 1, 2018. You can watch it on a number of networks, though personally I want to see Cord Hosenbeck and Tish Cattigan, aka Will Ferrell and Molly Shannon, host it streaming live on Amazon Prime Video. Of course, big-time dog lover Jonathan Scott of the Property Brothers is also hosting along with brother Drew, Josh Temple and Nancy O’Dell over on HGTV. Always have to support a fellow dog lover.
This year’s dog-themed float is by Lucy Pet Products with the float entry “Paws for Life.”
SIRIUS: Now retired, he was a K-9 military working German Shepherd Dog. Sadly, he was injured when working in Afghanistan and his best friend and handler Sgt. Joshua Ashley was killed by an IED. Sirius came back from his injuries to do an additional tour of duty. Wonderfully, Sgt. Ashley’s family adopted Sirius upon retirement. You’ll see both 10-year-old Sirius and Tammie, Sgt. Ashley’s mother, on the float.
JAX: Another working dog will be on the float: 5-year-old Belgian Malinois Oxnard Police Department K-9, along with his handler, Senior Officer Daniel Casson. Brave Jax works daily to bring down dangerous criminals, like sniffing out 5 pounds of methamphetamine disguised to look like a wrapped birthday gift during a routine traffic stop. Jax also apprehended a criminal trying to light an occupied homeless encampment on fire. Off duty, Jax is Officer Casson’s family dog who plays with all the neighborhood kids.
ROCKET: This Border Collie mix was deemed unadoptable in a shelter because of his high energy level and was slated to be put down. Thank goodness he was rescued by a Search Dog Foundation recruiter and now works alongside his handler, firefighter Mike Stornetta, traveling all over the country to search for victims who are trapped during natural disasters. He was recently deployed in the aftermaths of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and the Sonoma wine country fires.
APOLLO: Left homeless by Houston’s Hurricane Harvey, the Lab mix puppy will be riding in the arms of his adoptive pet parent, active Army Staff Sgt. Justin Gilliss. Gilliss has served tours of duty in both Iraq and Afghanistan and adopted Apollo from Shelter Hope in Santa Clarita, California, which took in animals from one of Lucy Pet Foundation’s rescue airlifts transporting displaced pets from Houston to find new forever homes around the country.
YouTube’s Malibu Surf actors Ally Barron, Bailey Herrick, Van Bush and Keaton Yellin riding with registered therapy dogs Golden Retriever Surfing Jack and Dachshund Coppertone Surf dog.
The company’s namesake rescued Chihuahua Lucy (the reason for The Lucy Pet Foundation) will also be on the float.
Animal lover, advocate and well-known actor Danny Trejo (who we’ve profiled in Dogster magazine) will be there, too.
And, for all of you cat lovers, celebrity hero cat Tara, who saved 4-year-old Jeremy from a dog attack in his driveway, will be riding along with all the dogs.
Joey Herrick, the President and Founder of The Lucy Pet Foundation and Lucy Pet Products has this to say about the float riders, “We are honored to be working with such heroic animals and the people who love them. We salute the animals for their love, companionship and bravery … whether it’s a cat protecting a little boy from a vicious dog attack or a military working dog shielding soldiers in combat, they each deserve this very special recognition.”
Thumbnail: Photography courtesy Lucy Pet Products.
Stay tuned for more from Executive Editor Melissa L. Kauffman on Dogster.com’s Dug Up at Dogster column and on social media with #DugUpatDogster.