02-12-2018, SPCA(HK) Friends, Families & Pooches “Pawty”

(Hong Kong, 2 December 2018) Hosted by the Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Hong Kong) (“SPCA(HK)” or “the Society”) and supported by the Energizing Kowloon East Office (EKEO), the VESSEL, as well as Akinalliance, the first “SPCA Friends, Families & Pooches “Pawty” and “Urban Orienteering Contest for Pooches and Friends” was successfully held on 2 December (Sunday) at the Kwun Tong Promenade, Hoi Bun Road and the Vessel to promote the acceptance and harmonious co-existence of all living creatures in the community.

During the kick-off ceremony, guests of Honour Professor Sophia Chan, JP, Secretary for Food and Health officiated at the event alongside Ms Ida Lee, JP, Deputy Director (Leisure Services) of Leisure and Cultural Services Department; Ms Brenda Au, JP, Head of Energizing Kowloon East Office; Ms Rebecca Lam, Assistant Commissioner of Police (Support Wing); Dr. Kenny Ho, Principle Veterinary Officer of Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department; Ms Gigi Fu, President of the SPCA(HK); Ms Ruby Yeung, CEO of the Vessel; and Ms Sharon Kwok, SPCA(HK) Cadet Inspector Ambassador. They presented certificates of appreciation to all the supporting organisations and groups.

At the event, Professor Chan, JP, Secretary for Food and Health, in her speech remarked “Today’s event not only gathered dog lovers in experiencing the human-canine bond but also hosted a series of parent-child workshops that promote the message of the co-existence of humans and animals. This aligns with the Government’s direction in promoting animal welfare, and the goal of achieving a harmonious co-existence of humans and animals within our communities. In the future, the Government will continue to introduce new measurements to advance the protection of animal welfare. For instance, in regard to drivers’ responsibilities in stopping their vehicles in traffic accidents involving animals under the “Traffic Road Ordinance”, we intend to widen the scope of animals that are covered.”

At the event‘s opening ceremony, Ms Gigi Fu said on behalf of the Society, “I would like to express our deep gratitude to all the supporting organisations and sponsors for their efforts in helping promote an animal-friendly community.”

The SPCA’s first “Urban Orienteering Contest for Pooches and Friends” was very well received by the general public and their pets. Each team ventured through the streets of Kwun Tong to complete their challenges and obstacles within their designated time period, fully demonstrating the spirit of a co-harmonious existence of all living creatures in our community. Participating in the event are also a number of specialised groups and celebrity teams that included retired police dogs; Seeing Eye Dogs and the visually impaired individuals; Seeing Eye Dogs in training and their foster parents from Hong Kong Seeing Eye Dog Service; celebrity Ms Sharon Kwok, SPCA(HK) Cadet Inspector Ambassador, and child star Celine Yeung. After the contest, Ms Gigi Fu, President of SPCA(HK); Ms Sharon Kwok, SPCA(HK) Cadet Inspector Ambassador and child star Celine Yeung presented prizes to the winners.

In the afternoon, the Society hosted a large scale carnival that featured a range of exciting activities including the “MAMASMART” art and craft market; 70-animal brick exhibition; family-friendly workshops such as -- “Paint Your Pet” photo art workshop; “My Pet Buddy” workshop; animal rocket workshop; dog agility games; “Seeing Eye Dog” leading experience; speech therapist and therapy dog experience; as well as busking performances and pet food plaza. The public was also invited to utilize a lawn area to picnic and chill with their pets. All canines and their owners experienced an action packed day filled with fun and joy.

The SPCA is delighted that this event marks the first time that the lawn at the Kwun Tong Promenade was open to owners and their dogs to enjoy the beauty of the inclusiveness of human and animals. We would like to hereby express our gratitude to the LCSD for making this come true. We hope that our breakthrough could be a turning point in fostering the development of dog-friendly facilities, so that dogs can use different community facilities more often.