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Barktoberfest — Pets put on the dog at Halloween costume contest

AMERICAN FORK — Wookie is more than a family pet.

He's also a certified service dog for the hearing impaired. So when the toy Yorkshire terrier showed up at Barktoberfest dressed as a lion, it was just for fun.

"It's just a fun way for him to get a costume and show off his stuff," said his owner, Robin Hansen of American Fork. Wookie is her right hand, or rather, ear animal. Because Hansen is hearing-impaired, the tiny dog alerts her to sounds she may miss — the doorbell or phone ringing or her kids coming home from school.

The second annual dog fashion show and Halloween contest at Animal Ark pet store included prizes for the winners of various categories and a small bag of dog food for all participants.

Other events included a Tunnel of Terror for dogs, and such games as bobbing for biscuits. At the fashion show, the decorated dogs pranced — or were gently dragged by their leashes — along the purple runway. Esther McCutcheon, dressed as a witch, handled the master of ceremonies honors.

"The fashion show lets everyone see what styles are available this year and when a dog is in clothes of any kind there are laughs to be had," said Animal Ark manager Jetta Clark.

"It's a chance to get the dogs out and get them dressed up. It's something fun to share with my dog," said Bonnie Bradley of American Fork.

Her dog, a Pomeranian, was dressed as Superdog.

Winners of the fashion fest:

Scariest costume — Peluza, a Chihuahua-poodle mix dressed as a skunk, owned by Maria Boco.

Funniest — Winston, a Yorkshire terrier, dressed as a cowboy with shades, owned by Kelsey Bigham.

Best costume — Dash, a Chinese crested, dressed as a pirate, owned by Marisa Beagley.

Coolest — Romeo, a Chihuahua, dressed as a prison inmate, owned by Nancy Solano.

Creepiest — Sunshine, a dachshund, dressed as a princess, owned by Karissa Dumas.

Most original — Frostie, an American Eskimo-Maltese mix, dressed as a French maid, owned by Spencer Smalley.


E-mail: rodger@desnews.com