Guilford County Animal Services decided to try something new, and by all accounts – including a public thank you note from the department to the public – the Sunday, April 10 dog party at Bur-Mil Park was a raging success for human’s and their best friends alike.

The department hosted their first ever – and soon to be annual – event with the snappy title “Must Love Dogs Spring Festival.”  The major event, which was jam packed with things to do, was held largely to help promote the awareness of the need for canines to get heartworm prevention procedures.

In keeping with that goal, proceeds went to the “Have A Heart Program.”

The timing of the event was due to the fact that April is National Heartworm Awareness Month. The festival featured booths with information about heartworms and was also a place for Guilford County Animal Services to showcase some adoptable heartworm positive dogs.

The event also included an Easter egg hunt for dogs, a photo op with the easter bunny – presumably not the real one who’s in very high demand this time of year – and a “pup painting” attraction where pets made paintings for their owners..

There was also doggy yoga, fire trucks, a microchip check point, local vendors, food trucks, and a game of mosquito tag for children and pets.

Animal control officials sent out a public thank you and called it a “a dog gone good time.”

It read, “The event was successful not only in providing entertainment and education for the community, but thanks to our generous community raised money for their Have-A-Heart program which helps cover treatments for heartworm positive dogs at the shelter.”

The thank you note continued: “Guilford County Animal Services would like to thank our wonderful community for your support helping heartworm positive dogs in our community and sharing information about this preventable condition. Thank you to our fantastic vendors that donated their time and a portion of their proceeds to the Have A Heart Fund. Thank you to all of our wonderful volunteers and staff members for helping make today possible! And last, but certainly not least, thank you to Guilford County Parks for hosting us at the gorgeous Bur-Mil Park! …What a fantastic event thanks to our entire community. From all of us at Guilford County Animal Services – THANK YOU!!”

County officials say they’re very excited about making this an annual event with an even bigger crowd next year.

If you missed the festival, but would still like to donate towards the Have-A-Heart Fund, you can do so by visiting