Annual Howl-O-Ween Pooch Parade held at UT gardens

The Howl-O-Ween Pooch Parade and Pet Expo was hosted on Oct. 20, 2019 at the University of Tennessee Gardens. All parade proceeds went to the University of Tennessee Gardens and the College of Veterinary Medicine.

The University of Tennessee Gardens hosted its sixth annual Howl-O-Ween Pooch Parade and Pet Expo on Oct. 20.

All proceeds from the parade supported the University of Tennessee Gardens and the College of Veterinary Medicine. In addition, plenty of dog-friendly vendors, adoption agencies and nonprofits participated.

 The dressed-up dogs were competing in a contest during the parade that had four categories: Do(g) It Yourself, Bad to the Bone, Funny Bone and Pup Culture. A group of local dog enthusiasts judged each pooch for the best costume.

The committee for the parade did copious amounts of work beforehand in order to make the parade successful.

“We’ve got a great committee that starts meeting in August and we have a list of potential vendors that we contact,” Beth Willis, an event host, said.

Willis also highlights the inspiration behind the Pooch Parade.

“We saw some similar things and we realized there’s nothing like this in the community that we were aware of at the time,” Willis said. “In the spring there’s Mardi Growl but we thought this was a good fall compliment to that and it’s been really well received.”

Ja’Shonna Bryant at her stand at Howl-O-Ween.

One of the vendors at the event was Ja’Shonna Bryant, a young entrepreneur who sells recycled pet clothes.

Bryant, who is only ten years old, opened Bow Wow Doggie Boutique in August 2018. Bryant explains the inspiration behind her business:

“I just really like dogs and just thought that people deserve a better clothing system that doesn’t try to rip them off,” Bryant said.

This is Bryant’s first year participating at the Howl-O-Ween Pet Expo. 

“I just thought it was a great opportunity to sell my clothes to a bigger community,” Bryant said.

Bow Wow Doggie Boutique also has a Facebook page.

A list of all sponsors, vendors, nonprofits and adoption agencies at the event are listed on the Howl-O-Week Pooch Parade and Pet Expo website.

Edited by Grace Goodacre and Maddie Torres

Featured photo by Madison Adkins