By: Sherri Telenko
Just like its namesake predecessor, participants at Woofstock in Toronto’s Woodbine Park need to pee freely. Good thing Woofstock is outside. Unlike Woodstock, though, participants aren’t free loving hippies but free spirited dogs–fur babies to many canine crazy pup parents heading to North America’s largest outdoor dog festival this weekend.
Welcome to the 15th anniversary of Woofstock, May 26 and 27, 2018.
The park is full of dogs, dog people, dog activities such as a lure courses and a leash-free play area, social media celebrity pooch appearances, dog rescue fundraising, a fashion show (for dogs) and vendors … many, many vendors … dog products, clothes, food and accessories. More dog stuff than you’ll ever need.
In the lifestyle section of The GATE, you’ve come expect foodie insights for people. Well, welcome to some food reviews for the exacting palettes of pets. (Okay, perhaps not so exacting).
Meet my taste tester, Victor. He’s a 13-year-old cocker/jack cross who’s remarkably picky for a pooch, and star of dogtrotting.net. Here’s what he sampled this weekend:
- Wufers Gourmet Dog Treats – Ok, I love this product because it’s a cute, colourful, concept that solves a problem for people like me. Wufers is a gift box of colourful dog cookies ordered on line and sent directly to a recipient. Yes, sometimes you got to send a doggie gift box. Themes include ‘It’s Your Birthday’ and ‘Canada Day.’ What did Victor think? No preference regarding gift box style, but he crunched through the bone shaped cookie at home, no hesitation.
- Marley’s Green Treats – Crickets anyone? People might react to the suggestion, but our canine buddies who occasionally sniff through the garbage don’t bat an ear. Marley’s homemade dog treats use cricket powder as the protein source (apparently contains two times more protein than beef). Three flavours to chose from all grain-free – blueberry, cranberry, pumpkin and pup-r-mint. Victor got pumpkin. Did he eat it? Unfortunately, no. No crickets for him.
- Flying Hound Pops – Don’t you love a frozen treat on a hot day? So did Victor, sort of. Woofstock was a great day for a frozen ‘hound-sicle’ in Bacon and Peanut Butter flavour. And yes, the stick is edible. What’s added to the pup pop? Yogurt, blueberries, watermelon and bone broth (something had to be liquid originally). Victor licked a Bacon and Peanut Butter flavour at intervals throughout the day. (Yes, I carried it). But didn’t eat the stick.
- Amber’s Barkery – All-natural bakery for dogs based in Oakville is one of many independent vendors baking pup treats and yes, birthday cakes. Victor had to try all three clever flavours: Crazy Canuck with bacon and maple syrup; Pizza Pup, with cheddar cheese, sundried tomatoes and beef broth; and peanut butter & banana. Victor’s favourite? Pizza Pup. He’s a ‘za kind of guy.
Woofstock runs until 5pm on Sunday, May 27 in Woodbine Park, 1695 Queen Street E., Toronto, Ontario. Free shuttle from The Western Harbour Castle Hotel. Find out more at woofstock.ca.
Check out more of Victor’s adventures at www.dogtrotting.net – global travel for dog lovers.