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HomeNewsArchives2nd Babe Award to Be Presented at 2004 Wagapalooza

2nd Babe Award to Be Presented at 2004 Wagapalooza

May 31, 2004 – St. John's 4th annual Wagapalooza Dog Show is set for June 13 at Skinny Legs Bar and Restaurant in Coral Bay. The event "is known for its quirky, spirited style of fund-raising" for the Animal Care Center of St. John, a release notes.
This year's parade of pooches is expected to attract more than a hundred dogs, and out front as grand marshal will be DD, which is short for Dumpster Dog, which tells you what was almost her fate.
DD and her Coral Bay owners, Jeff Bumberger and Judy Whitley, were the winners last year of the Babe Award for Best Rescued Dog, which was presented for the first time.
Babe was an affectionate bulldog adopted from the Animal Care Center a few years back by Pat Mazza and Adam Sawyer. Babe won the hearts of the Wagapalooza judges two years ago, taking home the Best of Show award.
Then one day, Babe was missing. Within 24 hours, according to the release, "St. John was covered with handmade signs with a stenciled look-alike of the dog and huge letters reading 'Where's Babe?' Everyone was on the lookout, from local taxi drivers to caring tourists."
Weeks later, Babe's body was found on the shore at Rendezvous Bay. "Because of Pat and Adam's unrelenting efforts to find their best friend, the ACC was inspired to name and perpetuate its most prestigious honor, the Babe Award for the Best Rescued Dog, after Babe and her loving owners," the release stated.
The first recipient, DD, and four tiny puppies had been tossed into a trash bin, with only two surviving the ordeal. They were taken to veterinarian Laura Palminteri at Canines, Cats and Critters, who recalls that "they were more fleas than dogs." She nursed them to health and took the little 5-week old terrier mix pup to the 2002 Wagapalooza hoping to win some hearts.
Bumberger and Whitley's 12-year-old dog had recently died, and they were thinking of adopting another. "I looked that puppy in the eyes and couldn't put it down," Bumberger relates. "She won me over that day, and she knows she got a second chance. She still has more heart, smarts, loyalty and love than any animal I've ever known, and she shows it every day. I don't know who's luckier — her or us."
Last year the couple entered DD in the Best Costume competition. The dog rode in a wagon decorated to look like a trash bin, then jumped for the judges through a hula hoop decorated with images of flames — illustrating her leap from an almost doomed fate — and into the arms of her owners. According to the relase, "DD didn't win the category, but she won the hearts and recognition that all such rescued animals deserve."
Who will capture the crown as this year's Best Rescued Dog remains to be seen. But one thing is sure, the release states: "Babe and DD's stories are a reminder of the big-hearted souls on St. John, and of the ACC's continually striving to care for our less-fortunate four-legged friends."
For more information about the 2004 Wagapalooza, call Debbie Hime at 643-7642.

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