The doggy paddle will be on full display on Sunday May 7 as 400 pooches descend on Auckland’s Onehunga War Memorial Pool for the YMCA’s Dog Day Out charity event. 

The event, now in its third year, attracts dog-loving families from as far afield as Tauranga for a day of exclusive outdoor pool access for the ‘fur babies’.

The day doesn’t go entirely to the dogs, though - the event also has a pawsitive impact on YMCA’s family causes with all entry fees going to the YMCA Fee Assistance programme to subsidise gym and pool memberships for those in need, or YMCA’s Family Camp to send struggling families on a weekend away for quality time together. 

YMCA centre manager Cameron Kerr says the event is a great opportunity for all members of the family to spend some quality time together before the centre’s outdoor pools are closed and cleaned for the winter. 

“The event started in 2015 when we decided to have one last hoorah for local families before we closed our outdoor pool for the season. 

“Families are welcome to bring dogs of all sizes. Labradors seem to be the most eager to dive in, while the Chihuahuas prefer to watch and comment from the sidelines.” 

Dog Day Out is sponsored by Beneful New Zealand and includes stalls from Bark Bag treats and toys, Baskervilles dog treats, Kim's K9s dog walking service, Cotton Tails Store dog apparel,  as well as dog handlers and plenty of treats for dogs and owners.

The near sold-out event is capped to 400. Pre-sale tickets are available for $5 from Onehunga War Memorial Pools reception, or $7 on the day. Spaces for the two sessions (12-2pm and 3-5pm) are limited. 

For more information phone 09 634 3748.