Race Recap: 2015 Strut your Mutt 5k

Strut your Mutt 2015

I’ve dragged my boys out to do a number of Turkey Trots and various 5ks and they are usually less than thrilled. While they aren’t excited to bond with me on my running adventures, I found a fun event for my four-legged kid, Autzen.  There aren’t words to describe the level of excitement Autzen had running Strut your Mutt with me on September 12th. I’m not quite sure what he loved the most, getting to hang out at Sellwood Riverfront Park with all the other dogs, checking out all the dog related booths at the expo or the run itself, but he was in doggie paradise.

Strut your Mutt is a national event and in its 19th year and I love that the majority of the money raised in the Portland run/walk stays in Portland area shelters.  It’s a great event for anyone who wants to help save homeless dogs, but can’t commit to adopting one, runners and walkers are all welcome and it’s a blast to see all the different dogs that come out.

The run itself was a 5k along Springwater Corridor, a flat out and back and, while the course wasn’t anything especially spectacular itself, the dogs brought the fun.  Just like their humans, you saw all shapes and sizes of dogs, some fast, some not so fast and at least one that had to be carried.  I ran into friends doing their long run along the trail and was so thankful we were calling it good with 3.1 miles, mainly because Autzen was making me run. My little furry buddy was so interested in catching up to the next dog that he ended up winning his bracket and got a fancy little dog dish.

Plenty of volunteers lined the course, cheering for the pups and there were even spots for them to get water. This doggie dash had aid stations for the dogs, including treats which made me giggle a little, but reminded me of the focus for this event. Strut your Mutt wasn’t a run/walk for me, it was an event more my little buddy, which was a nice change of pace.

The finish was back at the Sellwood Riverfront Park, where they provided a dog-themed festival and the fun continued. They had a fenced area for the dogs to play and all sorts of booths to wander through. We got to make a chew toy for Autzen that he loves, he earned some more treats and he witnessed me failing miserably at the Timber’s trivia booth.  Fortunately, he was just excited to be out running and meeting other furry friends.

He wasn’t super excited to wear the finisher’s bandana, but he earned me a technical shirt and I know he had the best morning. It’s good to try out different events and I’m so happy I gave Strut your Mutt a run. This non-competitive event was so refreshing for me, well organized and genuine fun. I loved that it was pure and simple, just a run with your furry buddy and a good excuse to get outside together.  My boys think his fancy dog dish has gone to his head, but I love the reminder of our outing. I need to do more events for the simple joy they bring and I think Autzen agrees

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