August 23, 2014

Medina
Partly cloudy
69°F

Medina Municipal Pool open to pooches, hosts canine swim party

The dog days of sum­mer may be winding down, but the dogs at the Medina Municipal Pool’s annual Dog Swim Party on Sunday partied like summer was just beginning.

From poodles to bulldogs, more than 45 dogs of various breeds and sizes and their owners came to the pool to support the county Animals’ Disaster Team.

The Cleveland-based organization acts as the Red Cross for animals, dispatch­ing to disaster areas to make sure animals are cared for just as much as humans in times of crisis, coordinator Sue Gundich said.

A Lab-hound mix named Brewtus leaps after a Frisbee at the Medina Municipal Pool’s annual Dog Swim party on Sunday. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY JENNIFER PIGNOLET)

A Lab-hound mix named Brewtus leaps after a Frisbee at the Medina Municipal Pool’s annual Dog Swim party on Sunday. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY JENNIFER PIGNOLET)

The dog swim usually raises a few hundred dollars for the organization, Gundich said.

“We’re so grateful to the city of Medina for letting us use the pool,” Gundich said. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen dogs as happy as when they swim like this.”

For a $6 donation, the pool was open to anyone who wanted to bring their canine friends for a swim or just to socialize with other dogs. The afternoon also featured door prizes and contests for the best-dressed dog, most talented dog, and the dogs with the longest and shortest tails.

Fox 8 meteorologist and Medina Township resident Dick Goddard even made an appearance with his two dogs.

Some owners swam with their dogs, while others stood on the sides of the pool, tossing toys or offering encouragements to their pets.

But not all the dogs on Sunday were too crazy about the water.

Medina resident Scott Freeland’s Boston terrier, Sophie, swims in a kiddie pool at home but wasn’t too happy about the depth of the Medina pool, Freeland said.

“Sophie’s not a strong swim­mer,” he said. “I think she was just star-struck by Dick God­dard.”

Head lifeguard Julie Worsdall said she had to rescue a few dogs during the day, including an 11-week-old puppy that fell in and started sinking.

Darlene Donkin, the aquat­ics manager for the Medina Recreation Center, said the biggest task of the day is drain­ing the water to clean up the dog hair after the event.

But despite the work, Donkin said the annual swim is her favorite event of the sum­mer.

There will be another Doggie Pool Party 4 to 8 p.m. today at the Medina Municipal Pool, 421 E. Homestead St., to raise money for The County Animals Rescue & Evacuation. For more information, visit www.careoh.org or call (330) 421-4258.

Contact Jennifer Pignolet at (330) 721-4063 or jpignolet@medina-gazette.com.