Blessing of dogs Saturday in Chittenango

Published Oct 10, 2018 at 4:00pm

CHITTENANGO — The Episcopal Diocese of Central New York and Clear Path for Veterans will host a Blessing of the Dogs to honor veterans and their service dogs at 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 13 at Clear Path, 1223 Salt Springs Road, Chittenango.

The event is free and open to the public. Churches traditionally commemorate St. Francis, the patron saint of animals, by blessing dogs, cats, and other beloved pets on or near St. Francis Day, Oct. 4. The “Blessing of the Dogs” especially celebrates the special relationship between veterans and the dogs that partner with them to provide them companionship, emotional support, and assistance for service-related disabilities such as post-traumatic stress disorder. Donations will benefit Clear Path for Veterans’ Dogs2Vets program, which trains service dogs and emotional support dogs for veterans. 

The Diocese and Clear Path invite all community members—especially veterans and their families —to bring their service dogs, emotional support dogs and pet dogs for a short prayer service and special blessing from the Rt. Rev. Dr. DeDe Duncan-Probe, the bishop of Central New York. She will also bless stuffed animals, photos, and special mementos.

She will also offer a blessing in Clear Path’s Memorial Garden for lovingly remembered animal companions. Light refreshments will follow the service, and walking trails will be open to dogs and humans. Organizers ask that attendees properly restrain all dogs with a leash and flat collar and bring proof of rabies and distemper vaccinations.

For more information, visit cnyepiscopal.org/blessing-of-the-dogs.