All participating groups must be approved members of the No More Homeless Pets Network (or members of the NKLA or NKUT coalitions). Groups are asked to select a team captain to represent them, submit an application and sign a basic agreement.
If your organization is not yet a network partner and you wish to participate, the deadline to apply for partnership is September 1. You can find the application to participate in Strut Your Mutt here. Groups may apply at any time, but approval cannot take place until the group is a Network partner, with all the required reports submitted.
Network partner shelters, rescue groups, trap-neuter-return (TNR) groups, food banks and other animal welfare organizations are welcome. Each year, a wide variety of groups take part — even cat-specific organizations. In the 2016 event, Shadow Cats of Austin, Texas, raised nearly $53,000.
Check out our fundraising tips for ideas on how to boost your fundraising results. Best Friends will also provide you with marketing tools to help you spread the word, including flyers, sample social media content and images, poster templates, and more. For the live events, we will launch a widespread marketing plan to promote the event, with local ads, guerrilla marketing and more.
Strut Your Mutt Day is the same as the live event, except you get your very own day on October 28 to strut however you’d like! Teams taking part in Strut Your Mutt Day do many of the same things as the teams in live events — raise funds through a personal fundraising page, ask supporters to join or support their teams and qualify for incentives. Strut Your Mutt Day participants receive their official T-shirts by mail and participating network partner groups are not listed on the shirts. Strut Your Mutt Day participants can certainly host a get-together to celebrate their fundraising, but they cannot host their own Strut Your Mutt event or use Best Friends’ name or logo, since such an activity would not be overseen by Best Friends. Learn more about Strut Your Mutt Day here.
People donate online to Strut Your Mutt through team and individual pages. All donations by cash or check are considered offline donations. Team members receiving offline donations must fill out an offline donations form and send it along with copies of the checks for verification to Best Friends. We will enter those donations onto the team’s fundraising page. If check donations are submitted on time and in accordance with the offline donation official rules and regulations, they count toward the fundraising total of a team or individual, as well as toward various prizes and incentives offered by Best Friends.
You can bring offline donations (including the corresponding offline donations forms) with you to the event and drop them off at the donations tent. But please remember that for offline donations to count toward team or individual totals and top fundraising awards or contest prizes, all offline donations, forms and corresponding check copies must be received by Best Friends no later than 5 p.m., Eastern time, one week before the event.
Cash donations are only accepted at live events and do not count toward top fundraising awards or contest prizes. Teams or individuals participating in the virtual Strut Your Mutt cannot accept cash donations.
Please note: Offline donations do not count as registration fees. Registration must be completed online, by noon, the day before the event, or you can register in person on the morning of the event at a slightly higher rate.
It varies, of course, but in 2016, a total of 42 network partner teams raised more than $10,000 for their individual organizations. Twenty-three of those groups raised more than $20,000. The average amount raised by network partner organizations in 2016 was nearly $6,000. Find out how you can save more lives with these handy fundraising tips.
The Strut Your Mutt team will compile a list of all individual donations and donors, which includes contact information, and send it to all team captains once the donation period has closed. Registration fees will be counted as donations and listed accordingly. Anonymous donors will not be included on the spreadsheet. Organizations receiving donations should send their donors a proper tax receipt by the appropriate deadline. Best Friends cannot offer advice regarding these receipts.
Online donations close at 11:59 pm Pacific time on October 31, 2017. Best Friends processes checks for funds and sends them out from the Sanctuary in Kanab, Utah, within six weeks of the close of online donations. Because of Kanab’s remote location, checks may take several weeks to arrive.
Registration fees for Network Partner team members are considered donations, so you begin raising money right away as soon as you sign up for the event. All participants are required to register for Strut Your Mutt (except for network partner team captains, whose fees are waived).
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:
Refunds for donations
Registration fee refunds
Requests for refunds of registration fees will be honored through the close of registration for each city, which is 12 noon, the day prior to each event. Strut Your Mutt Day participation fees will be refunded through Saturday, October 28, 2016. All requests for refunds must be submitted directly by the registrant or donor and sent by email ( email@example.com) by 5 p.m. Eastern time on the day of the applicable deadline above. Note: All decisions of Best Friends Animal Society regarding incentive and award winners are final.
They kick off with a fun, tail-wagging one- or two-mile walk for all of the participants and their dogs. All organizations with a team fundraising page up by July 15 are guaranteed to have their names on a large hand-held event sign, as well as having it on official event T-shirts and listed on pre-event marketing materials. The walk is followed by a festival with food vendors and fun animal-related activities. A schedule of events and a list of vendors for each city are posted as they are finalized. City-specific information is listed at strutyourmutt.org.
Each person is limited to bringing no more than two dogs. (Note: We are very strict about this). Because there are tons of kids and other animals who come to the event, we don’t want anyone to be out there with more dogs than they can handle — something that could increase the chances of dogs escaping. Dogs must be at least four months old.
Click here for more rules, recommendations and safety tips for you and your pet.
Because Strut Your Mutt events are very noisy, filled with dogs and children and held outdoors, we do not allow cats. Additionally, inclusion of cats could be dangerous if there are cat-reactive dogs present — not to mention how stressful it would be for the cats.
Because there is not enough room at these live events, we are unable to grant booth space to all network partners. Best Friends works hard to secure a variety of vendors, which helps even out the costs of the event and brings an extra dose of excitement for the public and Strut Your Mutt participants.
However, network partner teams raising the most money two weeks prior to each live event are awarded a booth at their city’s event.
Click here for details on this and other network partner incentives and prizes.
The only live Strut Your Mutt events taking place will be those in the designated 14 participating cities. Strut Your Mutt Day is an online only fundraising component of Strut Your Mutt, open to all network partners outside of these areas. Strut Your Mutt Day teams are encouraged to get their teams together to strut and celebrate their fundraising success on Strut Your Mutt Day, October 28. However, large scale community events with the use of the trademarked Strut Your Mutt name and logo are restricted to the 14 events hosted by Best Friends.
Strut Your Mutt location selections are based on a wide variety of criteria. The event expands to cities where there is an identified need, and where Best Friends members, volunteers, and network partners can help with the undertaking of this fundraiser. Best Friends is open to suggestions regarding new event cities and we welcome your ideas.