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Animal lovers' calendar: Weekend of July 3-4 and beyond

July 2, 2010 |  2:59 pm

Pig

Whether you want to dance up a storm, pet a pig, help homeless pets while having a nice dinner or enjoy world music while mingling with zoo animals from around the world, the coming days and weeks are chock-full of ways to help animals while having a good time. Here's our list of upcoming events; if you think we're missing one or want to let us know about an event we haven't heard of yet, just leave a comment on this post or send us a tweet @LATunleashed.

Saturday, July 3, party for a good cause during the Milkshake L.A. Independence Party at West Hollywood club 650 North, 650 N. La Cienega Blvd., from 10 p.m. to closing. The event raises money for Southern California organization spcaLA. Visitors can sign up online in advance of the event to be on its guest list; those on the guest list get in free before 10:30 p.m. Regular admission is $20.

Sunday, July 4, Acton-based farm animal sanctuary Animal Acres hosts its annual Fourth of July "Pignic," at which guests are invited to feast on vegan hot dogs and ice cream while getting to know the sanctuary's rescued residents. Activities include tours of the facility, opportunities to feed animals, field games, face-painting and more. Cost is $10; reservations aren't required. More information at AnimalAcres.org.

Sunday, July 4, don't forget to protect your pet while celebrating the Fourth of July. If you'll be away from home for the festivities, make sure your pet stays in a safe, quiet area; is not left unattended outdoors (even in a fenced yard); and is wearing a tag with your current contact information just in case he or she manages to make a run for it. Be sure to keep things like alcohol, matches, lighter fluid and citronella candles out of your pet's reach. More safety tips are available from the Humane Society of the United States and the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center.

Upcoming:

Thursday, July 8, Orange County animal lovers can enjoy a meal while helping rescue group Barks of Love. Diners at the Lazy Dog Cafe, 1623 W. Katella Ave., Orange, can present a flier available on Barks of Love's Facebook fan page between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. to have 10% of their bill donated to the group.

Friday, July 9, the L.A. Zoo hosts the first of its "Music in the Zoo" summer events from 6 to 9 p.m. Guests can wander the zoo while listening to live Irish, Japanese, Zimbabwean, Middle Eastern, Mexican and salsa music. Tickets are $12.50 for adult zoo members; $7.50 for child members ages 6 to 15; $16.50 for adult non-members; and $10.50 for child non-members ages 6 to 15. Children 5 and under enter free. Guests are encouraged to RSVP in advance. For more information or to RSVP, visit LAZoo.org.

Saturday, July 10, spcaLA invites potential "foster parents" to learn about its fostering program from 10 a.m. to noon at its South Bay Pet Adoption Center, 12910 Yukon Ave., Hawthorne. "Foster parents" are needed to care for puppies and kittens that are too young to be adopted, as well as older dogs and cats with special needs. More information at spcaLA.com. (The L.A. Department of Animal Services offers a similar program for underage puppies and kittens; more information on that program is available at the department's website.)

Saturday, July 10, the L.A. Department of Animal Services hosts mobile pet-adoption events at Fred Hesse Jr. Memorial Park, 29301 Hawthorne Blvd. in Rancho Palos Verdes, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; and at the West Hollywood Petco location, 508 N. Doheny Drive, from 1 to 5 p.m. See photos of adoptable pets at LAAnimalServices.com.

Saturday, July 10, it's time again for Wiener Nationals -- the annual event in which speedy dachshunds compete in a series of 50-yard dashes for the chance to be crowned Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals Champion (and take home $1,000 and a fancy trophy). The event, held at the Los Alamitos Race Course at 4961 Katella Ave., Los Alamitos, begins with a series of 12 heats in which the field of 98 dachshunds will be narrowed down to 12 finalists. Gates open at 4 p.m.; racing begins at 6:15, with the final race scheduled for 9:30 p.m. Cost is $3 for general admission; visitors 17 and younger enter free. V.I.P. seating is available for an additional charge. There is no charge for parking. Proceeds benefit the Seal Beach Animal Care Center's work on behalf of homeless animals. More information at LosAlamitos.com.

Sunday, July 11, the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County will open its newly restored 1913 Building with its "Age of Mammals" exhibition. The exhibition traces the history of evolution "from the extinction of the dinosaurs to the rise of humans -- within the context of epochal changes in the Earth's geology and climate," John Harris, the Natural History Museum's head of vertebrate studies and chief curator of the Page Museum at the La Brea Tar Pits, told our sister blog Culture Monster. Visitors will get to see specimens like the Simi Valley mastodon, a saber-toothed cat and a brontothere (a species with possibly the most rock 'n' roll-sounding scientific name: "thunder beast").

Sunday, July 11, the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Assn. (GLAZA) holds an informational meeting for potential High School Student Volunteers from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the zoo's Witherbee Auditorium. Students entering grades nine, 10 or 11 in the fall are eligible to participate in this program, which includes a 10-week training course. High School Student Volunteers must commit to 60 hours of volunteer work per year for two years. Applicants are required to attend the July 11 meeting, which includes a presentation, group activities and interviews. GLAZA requests that a parent or guardian attend the morning informational session. Potential volunteers should RSVP in advance of the event by calling (323) 622-8114.

Sunday, July 11, the L.A. Department of Animal Services hosts mobile pet-adoption events at Moorpark Park, 12061 Moorpark Ave. in Studio City, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and at the Santa Monica Kiehl's location, 1516 Montana Ave., from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Saturday, July 17, spcaLA presents "Kittenpalooza," its annual cat and kitten adopt-a-thon, from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at its South Bay Pet Adoption Center, 12910 Yukon Ave., Hawthorne. The event features a craft table for children, gift bags for adopters and booths from pet-related businesses including Natura Pet Products and L.A. Tails Magazine. More information at spcaLA.com.

Saturday-Sunday, July 17-18, Humane Society University and the Surf City Animal Response Team host a two-day workshop on emergency animal sheltering at UC Irvine Healthcare, 101 The City Drive South in Orange. The workshop is designed to help members of the public learn the skills necessary to volunteer at emergency shelters in the event of a disaster and includes both classroom instruction and hands-on learning exercises. Cost is $95. For more information or to register, visit HumaneSocietyUniversity.org.

Friday, July 23, the L.A. Zoo hosts the second of its "Music in the Zoo" summer events from 6 to 9 p.m. The musical theme for the evening is classic rock, and guests can wander the zoo while listening to cover bands performing the hits of the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Doors, Led Zeppelin, the Who, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Jimi Hendrix and more. Tickets are $12.50 for adult zoo members; $7.50 for child members ages 6 to 15; $16.50 for adult non-members; and $10.50 for child non-members ages 6 to 15. Children 5 and under enter free. Guests are encouraged to RSVP in advance. For more information or to RSVP, visit LAZoo.org.

Saturday, July 24, the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Assn. (GLAZA) holds an informational meeting for potential volunteer Docents from 10 a.m. to noon at the zoo's Witherbee Auditorium. Docents serve as volunteer teachers at the zoo and must complete a training program offered by the zoo each fall in conjunction with UCLA Extension. Docents must be 18 or older and able to commit to 100 hours of volunteer work per year for a minimum of two years. Applications for the program will be accepted through Aug. 14.

Friday, Aug. 6, the L.A. Zoo hosts its final "Music in the Zoo" summer event of the season from 6 to 9 p.m. Up-and-coming local artists are featured, including the Happy Hollows, Walking Sleep, the Lonely Wild and more. Tickets are $12.50 for adult zoo members; $7.50 for child members ages 6 to 15; $16.50 for adult non-members; and $10.50 for child non-members ages 6 to 15. Children 5 and under enter free. Guests are encouraged to RSVP in advance. For more information or to RSVP, visit LAZoo.org.

Ongoing:

The L.A. Department of Animal Services offers low-cost vaccination, microchipping and licensing clinics every first Thursday at its Harbor animal shelter; every second Thursday at its North Central animal shelter; every third Thursday at its South L.A. animal shelter; and every fourth Thursday at its East Valley animal shelter. All clinics begin at 4:30 p.m. and end at 6:30 p.m. More information and pricing in PDF format at the department's website.

Every Wednesday in July, area animal sanctuary the Gentle Barn offers a class on deep-tissue massage for animals, which can help provide comfort and pain relief. Cost is $300. More information at the Gentle Barn's Facebook fan page.

SpcaLA is currently accepting registration for several training classes for dogs. The organization offers agility training and "nose work" training classes for beginner, intermediate and advanced dogs, with sessions beginning in July. More information at spcaLA.com.

Every first Wednesday through October, Santa Monica's Pourtal Wine Tasting Bar, 104 Santa Monica Blvd., hosts "Wine Woof Wednesday" from 7 to 9 p.m. During the event, guests can bring their dogs along to Pourtal and receive free dog-walking service with any purchase over $25. More information at Pourtal.com.

I Love Dogs, Inc. hosts dog-friendly "Mojitos and Mutts" happy-hour gatherings at Long Beach's pet-friendly Hotel Maya from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. every last Wednesday through October. Eat, drink, be merry and meet fellow dog lovers while helping Southern California pets (each event will be geared toward helping an area animal charity). More information at ILoveDogs.com.

The Origins skin care store at The Shops in Mission Viejo has partnered with the Mission Viejo Animal Services Center to offer free mini-facials, gifts with purchase and a chance to win a $100 Origins shopping spree in exchange for items donated to the animal services center. Taking Origins up on this offer is simple: Just head into the retail store on the second level of The Shops in Mission Viejo and drop off an item on the animal services center's wish list. Wish-list items include blankets, towels, newspapers, heating pads, unused collars, bottles for unweaned kittens, and dog and cat toys. More information at MissionViejoLife.org.

Editor's note: An event listed in last week's calendar, the jazz brunch fundraiser for area rescue groups scheduled for Sunday, July 11, has been canceled.

-- Lindsay Barnett

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Share your animal photos: Dogs | Cats | Birds | Zoo Animals | Animal Friends | Sleepy Pets

Top photo: A piglet at the Animal Acres sanctuary in 2009. Animal Acres hosts a Fourth of July "Pignic" this weekend. Credit: Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times

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