Five-year-old Softie waits for a treat after running the “hot dog” race at House of Rose Winery (Brendan Shykora - Kelowna Capital News)

Kelowna winery holds “hot dog” race for SPCA

Dog owners and their pets were invited to the House of Rose Winery for a race through the vineyards

As part of National Hot Dog Day, wiener dogs suited up in their hot dog costumes and raced for a local charity Wednesday.

House of Rose Winery in Kelowna is running Dog Days of Summer, a fundraising initiative for the SPCA where winery patrons can bring along their dogs for some competitive exercise.

The “hot dog” race saw three rounds of pups take on a 20-foot vineyard track between 2 and 5 p.m., the third race of the summer season.

Guests can donate at the winery’s shop or while they’re watching the pup race, purchase a glass of wine and one dollar will be donated and two dollars if you grab a bottle to go.

“The funds raised go to the SPCA as a donation to help them with the work they do with the community because we think it’s really important,” said House of Rose event coordinator Nikhita Dhanday.

It’s the first year the winery has put on weekly dog races, but Dhanday hopes to make it an annual event.

“We’re really looking forward to having a whole bunch of dogs here, as our wine shop and winery are all dog-friendly.”

Last week’s event saw the winery raise $100 from product sales for the SPCA, not counting dollars dropped into the donation box.

“Hopefully it’s higher than that this week as the races should bring in more people,” said Dhanday.

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Minutes before the first race “hot dog” race, Marnie Boulter and her husband Dave sat with glasses of wine, their dog Softie by their side.

They’ve been coming to House of Rose for the past three years, usually on Thursday nights during the winery’s Summer Music Series.

“The owner of the winery approached us the other night and told us about this, and here we are,” said Marnie Boulter.

She’s glad to add the dog race to the list of SPCA fundraisers she’s been to.

“I think it’s a wonderful thing…because the more (donations) they get, the better.”

READ MORE: Locked in for love at the Kelowna BC SPCA

READ MORE: House of Rose Winery offers Art in the Vineyard

Boulter says her Softie came from a puppy mill, but would rather see fewer puppy mills to begin with and more would-be dog owners looking to adoption agencies to find a pet.

“There are too many rescue dogs that could be adopted. My granddaughter has adopted one just recently, so that’s a good thing.”

As for the race, Boulter was confident Softie would put in a good performance.

“In the dog park she beats them all,” she laughed. “So it’ll be fun.”

The House of Rose will have an SPCA donation box at their wine shop for the remainder of the month. Visit their website for more event information.

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