About

9784-SYM.org_FAQ.jpg

Frequently Asked Questions

REGISTRATION

About registration fees


Register by July 31st to get the special early bird price of $15. Registration cost will be $20 after July 31st. Onsite pricing will be $25.

If you join a Best Friends Network partner team, your registration fee goes directly to that organization. If you register to raise money on behalf of Best Friends, your registration fee goes directly to Best Friends.

When you register to raise money for a Network partner, your registration fee can be used as a tax deduction for 2019 income tax purposes. And all donations made by individuals to participating organizations are also tax-deductible. However, when you register to raise money for Best Friends, the money you raise is still tax-deductible, but your registration fee is not because it is used to help host Strut Your Mutt and make it the fun event that it is!

If you participated by donating to one of the Network partner organizations, tax receipts will be provided directly from that Network partner organization. Tax receipts will be provided by Best Friends Animal Society if you participated by donating to a friends and family team or company team.

How do I register?


Simply select the event you want to register for and click "Register".

Please be aware that you cannot register for Strut Your Mutt through the mail, but you can register online until noon local time the day before the event or in person on the day of the event. Register in advance to take advantage of the lower online registration fee. Please note that you cannot join a Network partner team onsite at the event, so you must register online by noon local time the day before the event to be able to join a Network Partner team.

How do I form a team?


If you attend Strut Your Mutt alone or with a friend, please register as an individual. But if you can rally a few friends or family members to join you, you can create your own team.

It's more fun to strut with a team — plus there are bragging rights! Create or join a team for a chance to win one of the top fundraising awards. Recruit friends, family, neighbors, coworkers, clients, pet sitters, your vet, your groomer and anyone else you can think of who might want to participate. You might find that Strut Your Mutt is the perfect way to get a conversation started about the great work being done to save the lives of homeless pets in your community and across the country.

Your team must have five or more paid registrants in order to be eligible to win top team fundraising awards at a live event. There is no maximum number of participants on a team.

Please note that you cannot raise money for an animal welfare group that has not signed up to participate as a Network partner. All animal welfare groups wishing to raise money through Strut Your Mutt must be approved Best Friends Network partners. Interested partners should submit an application to participate.

Network partners must register by August 23 to be eligible to participate.

I registered incorrectly. How do I change my registration?


Please visit our Contact Us page and fill out the form. In the field that asks what you have a question about, click "Registration". In the "tell us more" box, describe what you would like to do, and one of our support team members will help you with your needs. You may also use the chat feature to change your registration.

I have not preregistered for the event. Can I still register and attend on event day?


Yes, you may register on the day of the event. Just go to the on-site registration tent when you arrive.

Note: If you wait to register on the morning of the event, you will not have the option to join a Best Friends Network partner team. So if you want to support a particular Network partner, you must register and join that team online prior to the close of registration at noon on the day before the event.

FUNDRAISING

What is the refund policy for registration fees and donations?


For live events, refunds of donations and registration fees will be permitted through Friday, one week prior to each city's event date. The following are the donation refund request cutoff dates for each Strut Your Mutt city:

 

  • San Francisco, California - August 30, 2019
  • Austin, Texas; Raleigh, North Carolina - September 6, 2019
  • Kanab, Utah - September 13, 2019
  • Minneapolis, Minnesota - September 20, 2019
  • Atlanta, Georgia; DC Metro; New York, New York - September 27, 2019
  • Salt Lake City - October 4, 2019
  • Houston, Texas; Phoenix, Arizona - October 11, 2019
  • Jacksonville, Florida; Los Angeles, California; Strut Your Mutt Day - October 18, 2019

 

Requests for donation refunds received after applicable deadlines cannot be honored due to the effect such requests have on our fundraising contests. Participation fees will be refunded through Friday, October 25, 2019. Any refund request must be made directly by the registrant or donor and sent to events@bestfriends.org. Refund requests must be received no later than 5 p.m. Mountain time on the deadline day, outlined above.

Registration fee refunds will be honored through the close of registration for each city, which is 12 noon the day prior to each event.

Do I have to raise funds?


You are not required to fundraise for the Strut Your Mutt event, however, Strut Your Mutt is a fundraising event, and raising money above and beyond the requested registration fee means more lifesaving support for homeless pets.

How does a company match a donation?


A company match is an easy and effective way to increase your fundraising. Ask your own employer if they match charitable donations and ask your supporters to contact their employers for the correct paperwork. If you are raising money for a network partner organization, please ensure that you fill out a matching gift form with the organization's name and information and follow the company's directions for submitting the form. If you have any questions, please contact the organization you are supporting.

If you are raising funds for Best Friends, please ensure that you fill out a matching gift form with Best Friends’ information and follow the company's directions for submitting the form. If you have any questions about matching gifts that support of Best Friends, please email workplacegiving@bestfriends.org.

What is the fundraising deadline for individuals or teams to be eligible for prizes and awards?


Online donations count toward top fundraising awards up to the close of registration, which is noon local time, the day before the event.

Offline donations must be submitted no later than 5 p.m., Mountain time, one week before the event date. Print an offline donation form and follow the process on the form to submit it to Best Friends.

Strut Your Mutt Day

Don’t live near an event city? Strut Your Mutt Day, on October 18, allows you to help homeless pets by raising funds online. It’s great way to participate in the event, no matter where you live. Online donations will count through 11:59 p.m. Mountain time, Thursday, October 31, 2019.

For participant offline donations to count toward the top fundraising awards and grand prize, all offline donation forms and copies of the checks must be received by Best Friends no later than 5 p.m. Mountain time, Wednesday, October 23, 2019. Print an offline donation form and follow the process on the form to submit it to Best Friends.

NOTE: All decisions of Best Friends Animal Society regarding incentive and award winners are final.

How is the money I raise used?


Best Friends uses donations to help tens of thousands of animals, both at the Sanctuary and through outreach programs across the country. If you are raising funds for a network partner team, the money goes to support that group’s own lifesaving programs.

I would like to make a donation to a particular person or team. How do I do that?


The best way to ensure that your donation gets to the appropriate person or team is to ask for a link to their personal or team fundraising page.

You can also select the appropriate event, click on “donate” and search for the name of the person or team. You can then select the name of the individual or team to get to that fundraising page to make your donation.

If someone makes a $15 donation, can that person participate in the event?


If people donate $15 or more to your fundraising page (without registering), they are considered donors, not an event participant. Individual participants in the event must register and pay the registration fee.

I made a donation to the wrong person or team. What do I do?


Please visit our contact us page and fill out the form. In the field that asks what you have a question about, click “fundraising or donations.” In the “tell us more” box, describe what you would like to do and one of our support team members will help you. 

Please note: The change request must come directly from the person making the donation. We cannot move donations at the request of another person. You may also use the chat feature to seek help.

FACEBOOK FUNDRAISING

How is creating a Facebook Fundraiser different than just sharing a link to my personal page on Facebook?

How do I connect my Strut Your Mutt page with a Facebook Fundraiser?


You must first be a registered participant for Strut Your Mutt. To connect with a Facebook Fundraiser, log in to your Participant Center and click to connect with Facebook. Accept Facebook’s permissions and your new Facebook Fundraiser is created!

What if I previously created a Facebook Fundraiser on Facebook and now want to link it to my Strut Your Mutt page?


Existing Facebook Fundraisers cannot be linked to a Strut Your Mutt page. You must visit your Participant Center to create a new Facebook Fundraiser. Facebook Fundraisers not created through the Participant Center will not sync to your thermometer and Best Friends Animal Society. We recommend you delete any existing Facebook Fundraisers that you intended to link to your Strut Your Mutt page and then visit your Participant Center to create a new Facebook Fundraiser.

What data will Facebook receive once I connect my personal page to Facebook Fundraisers?


When connecting your personal fundraising page to a Facebook Fundraiser, Facebook receives information on the campaign you are fundraising for, your personal story from your personal page, and your fundraising goal at the time of the connection. On an ongoing basis, Facebook also receives updates on the amount of funds you have raised in order to keep the thermometer on your Facebook Fundraiser synced to the thermometer on your personal page. Facebook does not receive information about donors that donate through your personal page.

I updated my goal through my Participant Center. Will it change on my Facebook Fundraiser as well?


Yes. When you update your fundraising goal on your personal page, your goal will also be updated on your Facebook Fundraiser. However, if you update your goal in Facebook it will not update the goal on your personal page. For consistency, we recommend that you do not update your goal on Facebook.

I updated my story or photograph through my Participant Center. Will it change on my Facebook Fundraiser as well?


No. Following the creation of your Facebook Fundraiser, updates to your story or photograph on your personal page will not be reflected on your Facebook Fundraiser. This allows you to tailor content appropriately in either location.

How do I change my cover photo or description for my Facebook Fundraiser?


From your Facebook Fundraiser, click “…More” under the invite button, then click “Edit Fundraiser”. Changes that you make to your cover photo or description on Facebook will not be reflected on your personal page. This allows you to tailor content appropriately in either location.

Why did my Facebook Fundraiser end?


This means Facebook Fundraising has completed. Typically, all Facebook Fundraisers are scheduled to end on October 31st, the last day of fundraising for Strut Your Mutt.

Why did my fundraiser’s end time change?


This may have happened if there was a change with the campaign you are participating in. For example, if the event is rescheduled, your fundraiser’s end time may be automatically updated.

Is my Facebook Fundraiser public?


Yes. Fundraisers are public, so anyone can see them. Only people with Facebook accounts can make a donation.

How can I delete my Facebook Fundraiser?


From your Facebook Fundraiser, click “…More” under the invite button, then “Delete Fundraiser”.

How come I can see my donor’s name in the Participant Center, but on my personal page it is shown as “Facebook Fundraiser”?


Because the personal page does not allow for public display rules the donor could set on Facebook (ie. Friends only or friends of friends), all donors display on the personal page as “Facebook Fundraiser”. Please have your donor contact support@sym.zendesk.com if they would like to update the public display name on the honor roll.

Why is my Facebook thermometer showing more money than my personal page thermometer?


Refunds for transactions processed on Facebook are only reflected properly on your personal page. Due to company policy, Facebook will not adjust the thermometer on Facebook Fundraisers in the case of a refund.

Do donations still go to Best Friends Animal Society if people donate through my Facebook Fundraiser?


Yes, all donations will go towards to your personal Strut Your Mutt campaign and either Best Friends Animal Society or the Network Partner you are fundraising for.

How do nonprofits receive donations from my Facebook Fundraiser?


Donations are processed as if they were being made through your personal page.

Will donors to my Facebook Fundraiser receive a receipt?


When someone makes a donation through a Facebook Fundraiser, a payment receipt is sent to the primary email listed on the donor’s Facebook account. This payment receipt includes the organization’s tax ID number and confirms that the person has made a donation as a charitable contribution and that they’re not receiving any goods or services in return.

Why did I receive two emails acknowledging my donation to a Facebook Fundraiser?


All Facebook Fundraiser donors receive an email from Facebook on behalf of the organization. If you also elected to receive email from Best Friends Animal Society at the time of your donation, you will receive an email receipt directly from the organization as well.

How come my donation is shown on the personal page honor roll as “Facebook Fundraiser”?


Because the personal page does not allow for public display rules the donor could set on Facebook (ie. Friends only, friends of friends, only me), all donors display on the personal page as “Facebook Fundraiser”. Please contact support@sym.zendesk.com if you would like to update the name on the honor roll to your name.

How can I get a receipt for my donation to a Facebook Fundraiser?


You may contact Best Friends Animal Society at support@sym.zendesk.com. You may also find your donation under “Payment History” on Facebook or by visiting https://www.facebook.com/settings?tab=payments. You may print a receipt there.

How can I get a refund for my donation to a Facebook Fundraiser?


You may contact Best Friends Animal Society at support@sym.zendesk.com.

I am not located in the United States. Can I set up a Fundraiser linked to Strut Your Mutt?

I am not located in the United States. Can I donate to a Facebook Fundraiser for Strut Your Mutt?


At this time, donations must originate from the United States. In some rare cases, Facebook may display an error message indicating your area is not supported even if you are in the U.S. In that case, please contact Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/help/contact/162031714239823.

Can I contact Facebook directly about my donation to a Facebook Fundraiser?


Yes, you may contact Facebook by visiting https://www.facebook.com/help/contact/162031714239823. It may take longer to hear from them than from our support team.

DAY OF EVENT INFORMATION

What does a typical Strut Your Mutt look like?


Strut Your Mutt is more than just a dog walk — it's a fun, festive day with activities both humans and dogs alike will enjoy! First stop is the registration tent where you’ll check in and receive your event t-shirt (supplies limited). Next, enjoy the festival area, filled with local vendors, pet-centric activities, contests, entertainment and more! A celebratory walk starts one-hour in and includes doggy treat stations along the way. The length of the walk varies from city to city, but typically offers a short option (~1 mile) and a longer option (~2 miles). Once you return from the walk, grab a snack from one of the food trucks (offerings include vegetarian and vegan items), hang out with your teammates, and enjoy the remainder of the festival.

Parking is typically free for participants, but availability of free parking may vary by city. For the most current information about event-day activities, sponsors, vendors and parking, please select your event city.

What should I do on arrival?


If you registered online before the event, you will receive a know-before-you-go email to give you an idea of what to expect at the event. When you arrive, go to the preregistered check-in area pick up your free T-shirt (while supplies last) and start enjoying all the activities!

If you did not preregister online, check in at the on-site registration tent. If you plan to register on-site, we strongly recommend that you check the schedule of events in your city and arrive early to avoid the long lines. Please note: If you want your registration fee to support a network partner organization, you must preregister online by noon the day before the event.

How do I get a T-shirt?


Live events: Registered participants must pick up T-shirts at the live event. We make every effort to provide the shirt sizes requested during the online registration process; however, sizes cannot be guaranteed and quantities are limited.

Strut Your Mutt Day participants: T-shirts will be mailed to those that register online for Strut Your Mutt Day. .

What if it rains?


Strut Your Mutt is held rain or shine, so please dress (both you and your pet) accordingly. Remember, registration fees are nonrefundable, even in the case of rain. T-shirts must still be picked up in person on event day.

Do I have to participate in the walk, or can I just go and join the festivities and visit the vendors?


All participants must register; however, you are welcome to skip the walk and just enjoy the festival.

What payment methods are available for food and merchandise at the Strut Your Mutt event?


Best Friends will accept cash, checks, and debit or credit cards for Strut Your Mutt purchases. Please note: Food trucks and other vendors may require cash.

PETS AT STRUT YOUR MUTT

Are cats allowed?


In an effort to avoid any stressful situations for cat-reactive dogs or for cats in general, cats are not allowed at Strut Your Mutt.

Are other animals allowed?


Please contact events@bestfriends.org if you have questions about bringing other companion animals (pigs, goats, etc.) to the event.

Do I have to bring a dog?


No. You do not have to bring a dog to enjoy the festival.

If you do not have a dog with you, you can walk alongside your fellow animal lovers (which gives you two free hands to pet the many adorable pooches out there). You can also offer to walk with a dog from a shelter or participating animal welfare group, or consider volunteering at the event .

What do I need to know about bringing my dog to the event?


Participants are limited to bringing no more than two dogs. (We are very strict about this.) Dogs must be at least four months old and up-to-date on all vaccinations.

To help ensure the safety of the pets and people, all dogs must be kept on a maximum six-foot, nonretractable leash, and be kept close to their human. Dogs who may be dangerous to other animals or people, or dogs too frightened around crowds should not attend. Event officials reserve the right to refuse entry to any animal and may (if necessary) ask a participant to leave. 

Unaltered dogs are welcome unless they are in heat. Best Friends encourages you to have your dogs spayed or neutered because it not only helps reduce the number of pets entering shelters, but it also can help your pet live a longer, healthier life. A large portion of funds raised at Strut Your Mutt support our network partners’ spay/neuter programs.

Poop bags will be available at several locations, but you are also encouraged to bring your own. We encourage all participants to be courteous and clean up after their pets. Water bowls and troughs will be placed throughout the walking route and festival area, and we will make every effort to keep them filled during the event.

We want you and your pet to enjoy this fun event — and that means keeping you both as safe as possible! We will have a veterinarian and an EMT present on event day.

Can I adopt a dog at the event?


Since the event itself is focused on fundraising and awareness, we do not promote it as an adoption event; however, we encourage participating shelters and rescue groups to bring adoptable dogs.

To help adoptable dogs stand out, it’s helpful if they are wearing brightly colored bandanas, vests or shirts that say, “Adopt me” or “I’m looking for a home to call my own.” In most cities, we also hold a "partner row" to help you connect with local shelters and rescue groups and learn about adoption opportunities.

VOLUNTEERING

Can I volunteer at the event?


Absolutely! Strut Your Mutt is made possible by the help of volunteers. Learn more about how you can get involved.

WEBSITE HELP

What should I do if I forget my password?


Click on "forgot password" on the participant log-in page. You will then be prompted to enter your username and email address, and password reset instructions will be sent to the email address provided.

How to I edit my Profile (including changing my password)?


Follow these simple instructions to edit your profile page or change your password:

 

  1. Log in to your participant center.
  2. Click on "profile" located at the top right of the page.
  3. From there you can edit your profile to change your personal contact information, change or reset your password, or change your email preferences.

 

How do I edit my personal or team fundraising page?


Personal pages:

 

  1. Log in to your participant center (using your email address and password).
  2. On the right side of the page, click "edit personal page". (Note: If you are already logged into your participant center, click on "personal page" and follow these same steps.
  3. From there, you can make changes to your fundraising goal, copy and imageson your page. You can click "preview" to make sure you're happy with how your page looks. And don't forget to click "save" when you are done.

 

Team pages:

 

  1. Log in to your participant center (using your email address and password).
  2. Click on the team page tab.
  3. From there, you can edit your team's fundraising goal and your team page's copy and images. You can click "preview" to make sure you're happy with how your page looks. And don't forget to click "save" when you are done.

     

EVENT RULES AND SAFETY

How many dogs can I bring to the event?


There is a limit of two dogs per paid registrant.

Can I bring my puppy?


For health and safety reasons, all dogs must be at least four months old.

Do I need to leash my dog?


Yes. All dogs must be on a leash with a maximum length of six feet (no retractable leashes, please). Strollers and wagons are also welcome (for both humans and dogs). Please make sure your dog is leashed and securely attached to you if you are using a stroller, wagon or carrier.

Does my dog need to wear a specific collar?


For safety reasons, we do not allow dogs wearing pinch collars, choke collars or retractable leads to attend the event. Regular collars or martingale collars are OK.

Sometimes my dog doesn't like being around crowds. Can I still bring him or her?


Please use good judgement with your dog. Dogs who may be dangerous to other animals or people, or dogs too frightened around crowds should not attend. Event officials reserve the right to ask a participant to leave if the situation is deemed dangerous for other participants.

Does my dog need to be up to date on vaccinations?


Yes. Please be sure your dog's vaccinations are up to date, and your dog wears current identification and rabies tags.

Can I bring a dog that hasn’t been spayed or neutered?


Best Friends encourages all participants to have their dogs spayed or neutered. Spaying and neutering helps reduce the number of pets entering shelters, and it can help your pet live a longer, healthier life! Dogs in heat are not allowed at the event.

My dog has never walked with that many distractions before. What can I do to prepare?


To help your dog become familiar with walking on a leash around a lot of distractions, you may want to practice walking with your dog on trails or in parks or other locations where people walk their pets.

Can I ride my bike or rollerblade at the event?


For the safety of fellow strutters and dogs, items such as bikes, scooters, rollerblades and skateboards are not permitted.

What if my dog is hurt at the event?


A veterinarian and EMT will be on hand to help dogs and people with cases of injury or emergency. But to help keep your pet (and yourself) safe, be sure to drink plenty of water at the start and finish (There will be some water stations at the event). Pay close attention to your dog’s energy and stress levels, and make sure your dog isn’t getting too tired. Also, before and after the walk, inspect your dog’s pads for any signs of cuts or wear.

© 2019 Best Friends Animal Society. All Rights Reserved.

Best Friends, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, operates the nation's largest sanctuary for homeless animals; provides adoption, spay/neuter, and educational programs.

© 2019 Best Friends Animal Society. All Rights Reserved.

Best Friends, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, operates the nation's largest sanctuary for homeless animals; provides adoption, spay/neuter, and educational programs.