Animals dressed as dragons, unicorns, mermaids and more could be seen parading through Chelsea during the annual Pet Parade, part of the summer long Sounds and Sights Festival.
The Pet Parade, sponsored by Chelsea Farmers Supply, took place July 28. This year’s theme was “Mythical Creatures” and pet owners got creative in outfitting their furry friends.
Miss Washtenaw County, Patricia Sholtis of Saline was present to judge pet contestants on a range of categories including oldest, youngest, best dressed and (the crowd favorite) best kisser.
This year’s parade featured a variety of pets including dogs, parrots, a cat and a hedgehog. While the costumes were very creative for each pet, some of the animals’ stories were even more unique.
Linda Smith and Alan Vollmer of Chelsea brought their dog, Maria, dressed as Medusa. Smith said Maria and her five puppies were rescued from San Juan, Puerto Rico by DragonFly Rescue and Resources of Whitmore Lake after hurricanes swept through the island.
Tobias, an eleven year old male dog and winner in the oldest pet category, came dressed as Glenda the Good Witch. “Tobias is comfortable with his masculinity,” joked owner Susan Flinders of Chelsea. Flinders said Tobias volunteers at Chelsea Retirement Center doing therapy work with dementia patients. Mark and Meredith Nelson of Chelsea brought their black lab, Charlie, also a rescued dog. Charlie won in the best costume category with her mermaid costume. “Charlie is the Mermaid of Sugarloaf,” said Meredith Nelson as Charlie loves to swim at their Sugarloaf Lake home.
Some pet owners also dressed for the occasion. Angie and Dan Wellbaum of Chelsea donned pirate costumes and accessorized with their pet parrots, Duke and Earl.
Chelsea Farmers Supply owners Greg Raye along with wife, H. K. Leonard have been hosting the Pet Parade every year for the past sixteen years.
“It’s back by popular demand,” said Raye and added that the pet parade offers a good family time option.
More photos from the pet parade can be found on Facebook.