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Canines to make a splash at community pools

Release the hounds.

Both the Black Mountain Aquatic Complex, 599 Greenway Road in Henderson, and the Desert Breeze Aquatic Center, 8275 Spring Mountain Road, plan to play host to nearly 600 dogs during the pools' annual end-of-season events.

The Desert Breeze Aquatic Center's Dog Daze is scheduled for Sunday. The center has capped the number of dogs at 100 for the first session, 9 to 10:15 a.m. for dogs less than 50 pounds; and 100 dogs for the second session, 10:45 a.m. to noon for dogs more than 50 pounds.

"It's a really fun event for the community," said Desert Breeze Aquatic Center's recreational specialist, Jennifer Padilla. "There are really no other areas around town where dogs can swim together."

In its eight-year run, this is the first year Clark County has implemented online registration for the event.

"Last year, there was around 300 dogs," Padilla said. "(The online registration) helps us to limit the number of dogs."

Henderson's event, Doggie Paddle and Play Day, now in its sixth year, also adopted an online registration system for this year's event, scheduled for Saturday, in order to ensure that enough staff members will be available.

The Henderson pool event will feature three time slots: 9 a.m. to 10:15 a.m. for dogs 40 pounds or lighter; 10:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. for dogs 41 to 79 pounds; and noon to 1:15 p.m. for dogs 80 pounds or heavier.

"More and more we're finding people are looking for outdoor recreational activities and those that incorporate pets," said Kim Becker, a spokeswoman for the city of Henderson. "It's a great event where people can get together and meet new neighbors."

Dog Daze costs $5 per pooch, and Doggie Paddle and Play Day will cost $10 per preregistered dog and $15 at the door pending space availability. Both events require proof of vaccinations and license.

According to Padilla, representatives from the Durango Animal Hospital will be in attendance to provide any necessary medical attention during Dog Daze.

Similarly, Henderson Animal Control is scheduled to be on hand during Doggie Paddle and Play Day.

The hound hullabaloo not only features dog-inspired vendors and informational booths, but Dog Daze will hold contests such as the tallest and shortest dogs and the dog with the best trick.

"Last year, one of the dogs dove down three feet to retrieve a toy and bring it to the surface," Padilla said of a best trick contestant. "He won."

Padilla said she and her yellow Labrador retriever, Sierra, will be in attendance.

Even people without dogs are allowed to attend, and admission for humans is free.

"I get to enjoy the event vicariously through everyone who does have a pet," Becker said in an email.

When the dogs depart, the pool technicians get to work. Mid-September marks the end of outdoor pool season for most valley public pools.

The pools are drained and thoroughly cleaned, Becker said.

Despite the temptation, owners are not allowed to join their four-legged friends in the deep end.

For more information on Dog Daze or to register for the event, visit

For more information on Doggie Paddle and Play Day or to register for the event, visit

Contact Southwest/Spring Valley View reporter Nolan Lister at or 383-0492.