The Altoona Mirror's first sponsored Pet Expo will be one for the dogs - along with the cats, birds and any other pet imaginable.
These furry, feathery and scaley creatures will take over the Blair County Convention Center from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. A variety of presenters, vendors and rescue groups will be on hand to teach locals about the animals and how to best help and care for them.
Amy Hanna, director of marketing for the Altoona Mirror, said she is personally very excited to bring a pet expo back to Central Pennsylvania as there hasn't been one here in a few years.
Robin Graboski from Centre Wildlife Care will give a “Wild About?Animals” presentation to increase awareness about wild animals native to the region.
"I'm very involved in animal rescue and education, so I really wanted to see the area have a show again," said Hanna, the author of "Have Dog, Will Blog" on www.altoonamirror.com. "This one is especially near and dear to my heart."
And though she's a dog lover herself, Hanna said the Pet Expo will cater toward pet owners of any kind.
"Normally when people think of a pet show, they think dogs," she said. "But I thought, there are so many different animals that people consider pets, we wanted to offer it up to every different variety possible."
If you go
What: Altoona Mirror Pet Expo
Where: Blair County Convention?Center, Altoona
When: Noon to 5 p.m., Sunday
Admission is $4
Attendees should not bring their own pets to the event.
Attendees cannot bring their own pets to the event, but there will be plenty of animals on hand to keep them occupied. The expo will start with a K9 police dog presentation at noon, and continue with events like a "Wild About Animals" presentation from Centre Wildlife Care at 1:30 p.m., as well as showings from rescue bloodhounds and equine demonstrations.
"The more we can educate people and children about how to care for animals, the better off we'll all be," Hanna said.
Education is the main priority for members of the Altoona Area Kennel Association, who will be on hand to answer questions for any current or potential dog owners about various breeds. They will do Parades of Breeds, obedience demonstrations and canine agility presentations near both the beginning and the end of the expo.
Tamsen Nuff, board member and event chairperson for the association, said they hope to help locals "find a breed that fits their lifestyle and their household."
"The more informed a buyer can be, the less of a chance the dog will end up in a shelter," she added.
With an array of informational programming, Hanna hopes locals will be as receptive to the expo as they are to pet articles in the newspaper.
"Our goal is to not only have a wonderful, fun, educational day for people, but to continue to grow this show," she said.
Mirror Staff Writer Beth Ann Downey is at 946-7520.