They were marched out on a scorching hot surface, forced to walk across in their bare feet - each step burning a little more than the last.
With loud noises echoing off the giant structures around them, they were forced to weave through a never-ending maze of obstacles three to 10 times their size.
Sound like a scene from a horror flick - or a torture scene on some new reality television series? Those are either fictional or the subjects voluntarily sign up to be abused.
In this case, the victims have no choice - they are dogs dragged out to a public event against their will. I'm talking about animal abuse.
Admittedly, some don't share my views that dogs are members of our family. Our Jack Russell terrorist Annie and our red-headed yellow lab Reba are our babies and we work hard to keep them safe and show how grateful we are for their devoted and unconditional love.
I'm bringing this up today because I attended two very different events this weekend - one that absolutely infuriated me as a dog lover, and another that filled my heard with pride.
My blood was boiling Saturday when I joined my entire family in our annual volunteer endeavours with the Langley Good Times Cruise-In charity car show. More than 100,000 people filled the City core, and a few hundred were idiots who felt a need to bring their dogs.
Ignoring repeated requests made by event organizers, those pet owners - of all ages and creeds - brought their faithful, four-legged friends out on one of the hottest days of the year, into a huge crowd of people and cars that must have been overwhelming and scary, then made the canines walk on insanely hot asphalt for hours.
On more than one occasion, I asked permission then knelt down and shared my bottled water with a thirsty and overwrought dog - whispering my apologies to the dog then tactfully suggesting to the leash holder that this probably wasn't the best place for any animals.
In my eyes, what these people did was nothing short of torture. How can you do that to someone or something you profess to love?
I understand Cruise-In organizers and classic car owners don't want dogs because they don't want the cars scratched up by leashes and the likes. Nor do they want the dogs lifting their leg and piddlin' on their rubber.
But those points aside, dogs don't belong at any large public events (obviously, service dogs are an exception, but even then, the master should be taking all steps to minimize the negative effects on the dogs).
If you don't care about animals, then you probably don't care about the impact their presence at such events can have on other human beings, either. But I'll throw it out there anyway. What about those who are scared (or terrified) of dogs?
And some pet owners didn't have the decency to poop scoop, leaving the dog deposits for others to walk through.
On the flip side, I proudly attended the BCSPCA's Paws for a Cause fundraiser at the Albion Fairgrounds in Maple Ridge the next morning. What a wonderful contrast. Another public event, this had a maximum of 200 people and about 100 dogs in attendance.
Further, the cloudy, overcast weather on Sunday was much more appropriate for our furry friends. And the event came complete with water dishes strategically located throughout, lots of grass and sandy pathways that didn't hurt their feet, and lots of space to avoid overcrowding.
While both events were fundraisers for worthwhile causes, there are only a few events, like Paws for a Cause walk that are appropriate for pets. Most simply are not.
Use common sense. Show you care about your pets and leave them at home.
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