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Southern California animal lovers' calendar: Weekend of Oct. 30-31 and beyond

Breakfast at Tiffany's Halloween dog costume

It's Halloween Weekend, and you know what that means: Dogs in costume! There are numerous events where you can gawk at spectacularly-outfitted canines over the coming days, as well as opportunities to learn about birds, party for a good cause, adopt a new pet or show your vegetarian pride. Think we're forgetting something or want to clue us into an upcoming event? Let us know by leaving a comment on this post or sending us a tweet @LATunleashed.

This Weekend:

Saturday, Oct. 30-Sunday, Oct. 31, the L.A. Zoo hosts "Boo At the Zoo," a family-friendly opportunity to celebrate Halloween alongside zoo animals. The event includes a "Creepy Crawly Encounter," where visitors can see snakes, spiders and insects up close; "Halloween Down Under," where kids can trick-or-treat through a ghostly graveyard to learn about extinct animals; an "Animal Stomp 'n Chomp" exhibit, where guests can see animals like otters, seals, a rhinoceros and a hippopotamus eat and/or stomp on a pumpkin; live entertainment; face-painting; pumpkin-carving demonstrations and more. For more information and a schedule of events, visit LAZoo.org.

Saturday, Oct. 30-Sunday, Oct. 31 and Saturday, Nov. 6, L.A.'s Audubon Society chapter hosts a three-day Introduction to Birdwatching class, which includes a workshop and two days' worth of field instruction. Cost is $30 for chapter members and $50 for non-members (non-member registration fee includes chapter membership). More information at LosAngelesAudubon.org.

Saturday, Oct. 30, Orange County rescue group Barks of Love hosts an adoption event and costume contest at Jabez Salon, 18513 Yorba Linda Blvd. in Yorba Linda, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 30, the Friends of the Palm Springs Animal Shelter invite desert dwellers to its Dog Day Afternoon Halloween Extravaganza, with proceeds benefiting the New Shelter Building Fund. Event takes place at Palm Springs Stadium from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and includes trick-or-treating; dog agility, flyball, disc dog and search-and-rescue demonstrations; pet microchipping; face-painting; pumpkin painting; refreshments and more. Suggested donation is $3. More information at the group's website.

Saturday, Oct. 30, L.A.'s second annual Veggie Pride Parade takes place in Santa Monica, beginning with a rally at the Victorian, 2640 Main Street, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Parade through the streets of Santa Monica kicks off at 2 p.m. and is expected to last two hours. Vegetarian-themed costumes and signs are encouraged. Special guests include Animal Acres founder Lorri Houston; "Thanking the Monkey: Rethinking The Way We Treat Animals" author Karen Dawn; Daniel Hauff, director of investigations for Mercy for Animals; Julieanna Hever, executive director of Earthsave; and more. More information at AnimalAcres.org.

Saturday, Oct. 30, the L.A. Department of Animal Services hosts a mobile pet-adoption event at the Northridge Petco location, 8800 Tampa Ave., from noon to 4 p.m. See photos of adoptable pets at LAAnimalServices.com.

Saturday, Oct. 30, Compassion Over Killing invites animal lovers to its Halloween party, held at a private home in Van Nuys from 7 p.m. to midnight. Event includes a costume contest, prizes from animal-friendly retailers and restaurants, vegan food and drinks. Cost is $15 at the door; discounted tickets can be purchased in advance online. More information at the Facebook event page.

Sunday, Oct. 31, dress your dog in his or her silliest getup and head to Long Beach for the 10th annual Haute Dogs Howl'Oween Parade event at Livingston Park, 4900 E. Livingston Drive, from noon to 5 p.m. Parade begins at 2:30 and is sure to be spectacular; last year's event attracted 400 costumed canine participants. The event also includes pet-themed vendors, animal adoptions and a bulldog kissing booth. For more information or to register, visit HauteDogs.org.

Sunday, Oct. 31, spcaLA hosts its third annual Halloween pet parade and dog costume contest at its spcaLA Marketplace, 7700 E. Spring Street in Long Beach, beginning at 2 p.m. More information at spcaLA.com.

Sunday, Oct. 31, indoor dog agility and training center the Zoom Room refashions its Hollywood location as the "Doom Room" for a dog-friendly Halloween party from 2 to 4 p.m. Event includes a costume contest for dogs and refreshments for both dogs and their humans. Cost is $5 per dog. For more information or to RSVP, visit ZoomRoomOnline.com.

Sunday, Oct. 31, head to Burbank with your kids and dogs in tow for Downtown Burbank's Howl-Oween Celebration for Kids & Canines. Trick-or-treating for kids runs from 4 to 7 p.m.; a parade of costumed dogs, starting at the intersection of San Fernando Road and Palm Ave., begins at 6. Dog owners wishing to participate in the parade should register on-site by 5:30. Dogs must be well-behaved and leashed. More information at Downtown-Burbank.org.

Throughout October:

The American Humane Assn. has designated October Adopt-a-Dog Month! Find pet adoption information and resources at AmericanHumane.org.

Snack lovers can help farm animals by purchasing chocolate! Handcrafted vegan, kosher candy company Rescue Chocolate will donate 100% of its profits during the month of October to Farm Sanctuary. Better still: Each candy bar flavor has special packaging that highlights an issue facing companion animals (example: "Peanut Butter Pit Bull" aims to tackle "bully breed" stereotypes, and "Foster-riffic Peppermint" touts the need for foster homes to help rescue pets). Other charities that have benefited from Rescue Chocolate's delicious generosity include United Animal Nations, Philadelphia PAWS and the Animal Relief Coalition for Haiti. Eat up! More information at RescueChocolate.com.

Upcoming:

Thursday, Nov. 4, the Pasadena Humane Society hosts the Black Cat Affair, an adoption event for its black and "tuxedo" cats. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., adopters can bring home a black or tuxedo cat for a reduced fee ($20 off the humane society's regular rate of $70 or two cats for $85). More information at PasadenaHumane.org.

Thursday, Nov. 4, the L.A. Department of Animal Services hosts a mobile pet-adoption event at the Van Nuys Petco location, 5850 Sepulveda Blvd., from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Saturday, Nov. 6, local pet rescue group the Brittany Foundation hosts "A Day in Their Paws," an event to raise awareness about the living conditions of homeless dogs. Volunteers will spend a 24-hour period "kenneled" with adoptable dogs at the Brittany Foundation's Agua Dulce sanctuary; animal lovers can sponsor them through PayPal, with funds benefiting the group's work on behalf of homeless pets. From noon to 4 p.m., the public is invited to an open house with refreshments, a bake sale, raffle prizes and a silent auction. Of course, adoptable dogs will also be on hand to meet potential new owners. More information at the Brittany Foundation's website. (Hat tip to reader Michael Caemin-Romack for letting us know about this event!)

Saturday, Nov. 6, the Found Animals Foundation hosts the second annual Found Animals Forum, featuring speaker presentations and a panel discussion on the topic "Spay/Neuter: Past, Present, and Future," at the Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 North Sepulveda Blvd., from 3 to 9 p.m. The event features guest speakers from FixNation, The Amanda Foundation, the California Spay Spay Neuter License Plate Fund, Downtown Dog Rescue and Clinico. Registrant check-in is from 3 to 4 p.m.; speaker presentations and panel discussions are from 4 to 8 p.m.; and the event concludes with a networking reception from 8 to 9 p.m. Cost is $30, which includes a drink ticket; parking is free. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit FoundAnimalsForum.EventBrite.com.

Saturday, Nov. 6, the City of Santa Monica and the Red Cross of Santa Monica present the Santa Monica Pet Fair and Chip-a-Thon at Clover Park, 2600 Ocean Park Blvd., from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event includes free microchipping (while supplies last) and a low-cost vaccination clinic administered by spcaLA; pet training demonstrations; pet adoptions and more. More information at spcaLA.com.

Saturday, Nov. 6, vegans, rejoice: L.A. will have its first-ever Vegan Beer Fest at West Hollywood's landmark Roxy Theatre. Cost is $35 for general admission and $45 for VIP entrance, and admission price includes unlimited pours of dozens of vegan-friendly beers. (Why wouldn't a beer be vegan-friendly, you ask? Some are filtered using animal products like gelatin or isinglass; some contain honey.) For more information or to purchase tickets, visit LosAngelesVegan.com.

Wednesday, Nov. 10, Compassion Over Killing hosts a free vegetarian meal and discussion about progress in the farm-animal welfare movement with Paul Shapiro, senior director of the Humane Society of the United States' factory farming campaign. The event takes place at the Joslyn Park Rec Center Auditorium, 633 Kensington Road in Santa Monica, with doors opening at 8 p.m. and Shapiro's talk beginning at 8:30. The meal will be served potluck-style, so guests are encouraged (but not required) to bring a homemade vegan dish to share. More information at Compassion Over Killing's website.

Thursday, Nov. 11, take in an L.A. Kings hockey game at Staples Center and help needy pit bulls find loving homes all at the same time at Pucks for Pit Bulls. Game starts at 7:30 p.m.; tickets can be purchased online, with prices starting at $32. A portion of proceeds benefit local groups Dawg Squad Animal Rescue, Downtown Dog Rescue and Karma Rescue.

Saturday, Nov. 13-Friday, April 22, 2011, clothing-store chain Buffalo Exchange partners with the Humane Society of the United States to accept donations of fur clothing for the "Coats for Cubs" program, through which fur garments are reused as bedding for orphaned and injured wildlife. Fur in any amount (including fur trim and accessories) and condition will be accepted at all Buffalo Exchange locations. More information at BuffaloExchange.com.

Saturday, Nov. 13, Long Beach's Aquarium of the Pacific offers an informative session on the North Pacific for budding marine biologists ages 7 to 10 from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Kids will get a chance to touch animals in the aquarium's private classroom touch pools, watch a behind-the-scenes feeding of a giant Pacific octopus, practice feeding like a baleen whale and more. Cost is $24 per child, $19 for aquarium members (cost does not include aquarium admission). More information at the aquarium's website.

Sunday, Nov. 14, Southern California Bulldog Rescue hosts "It's Laugh-a-Bull," a standup comedy show to raise funds for needy bulldogs, at the Improv in Irvine, 71 Fortune Road #841, beginning at 2 p.m. Tickets are $30 and can be purchased through the Improv's website.

Wednesday, Nov. 17, Animal Care for Artists and the BarknPurr Alliance Fund host "Furry Drinks," a networking happy hour for animal welfare advocates, at the Sportsmen's Lodge, 12825 Ventura Blvd. in Studio City, from 6 to 8 p.m. Event is free; food and drinks are available for purchase. For more information or to RSVP, visit the Facebook event page.

Saturday, Nov. 20, Long Beach's Aquarium of the Pacific offers an informative session on the North Pacific for budding marine biologists ages 10 to 12 from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Kids will get a chance to touch animals in the aquarium's private classroom touch pools, find out just how large elephant seals can grow, help feed sea otters and more. Cost is $24 per child, $19 for aquarium members (cost does not include aquarium admission). More information at the aquarium's website.

Saturday, Nov. 20, Animal Acres hosts its annual Thankful Turkeys celebration, where guests can feed turkeys for Thanksgiving instead of eating them (and indulge in a guilt-free catered vegan meal themselves). Festivities start at noon with sanctuary tours, during which visitors can interact with Animal Acres' rescued farm-animal residents. Turkey-feeding ceremony begins at 1:30 p.m., followed by a vegan Thanksgiving feast for humans catered by One World Vegetarian Cuisine. Author Rory Freedman is the event's guest speaker. Tickets are $35 and must be purchased in advance. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit AnimalAcres.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.

L.A.'s Audubon Society chapter hosts free guided nature walks at Dockweiler Beach in Vista del Mar on selected Thursdays and Saturdays through mid-November. Upcoming dates are Thursday, Nov. 4 and Saturday, Nov. 13. More information at LosAngelesAudubon.org.

Through December, Long Beach's Aquarium of the Pacific will host Shark Lagoon Nights, in which its famous shark exhibit will remain open until 9 p.m. on most Fridays. Visitors will have the chance to touch bamboo sharks and see larger sharks and rays up close. For more information and a complete schedule, visit the aquarium's website.

Every Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., the Volunteers for the Burbank Animal Shelter host a mobile pet-adoption event at Centinela Feed & Pet Supplies, 1505 W. Olive Ave. in Burbank. See photos of adoptable dogs and cats at the Burbank Animal Shelter's website.

Every Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Dawg Squad Animal Rescue hosts a mobile dog-adoption event at Centinela Feed & Pet Supplies, 7600 S. Sepulveda Blvd. in Westchester. See photos of adoptable pets at DawgSquad.org.

Every Saturday from noon to 6 p.m., Kinder 4 Rescue hosts a mobile dog-adoption event at Book Star, 12136 Ventura Blvd. (just west of Laurel Canyon) in Studio City. See photos of adoptable pets at the group's Petfinder page.

Every Saturday from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m., Forte Animal Rescue hosts a mobile dog-adoption event at Centinela Feed & Pet Supplies, 3860 S. Centinela Ave. See photos of adoptable pets at the group's AdoptAPet.com page.

Every fourth Saturday, spcaLA hosts "PAWS to Read" at the Redondo Beach Public Library, 303 N. Pacific Coast Highway, from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Participation is free; sign-up begins at 9 a.m. at the Children's Information Desk. More information at spcaLA.com.

Every second Sunday, Evidence of Love Animal Care hosts a mobile pet-adoption event at the Van Nuys/Sherman Oaks Recreation Center, 14201 Huston St., Sherman Oaks, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. More than 130 dogs and cats from area animal shelters and rescue groups come out to meet potential adopters -- oh, and there's a gourmet food truck, too. More information at EvidenceOfLove.org.

-- Lindsay Barnett

RELATED READER PHOTO GALLERIES:

Soccer dog Fat cat Hummingbird Giraffe Cat friends Sleepy

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

Top photo: Sissy, a Norfolk terrier, shows off her "Breakfast at Tiffany's" costume during the Tompkins Square Park 20th Annual Halloween Dog Parade in New York City on Oct. 23. Credit: Timothy A. Clary / AFP/Getty Images

 
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More than 2,500 of the world's most beautiful, athletic and magnificent dogs will face off over three days at the Long Beach Convention Center on Dec. 1-3. Adding to the fun, the arena will be transformed into a holiday wonderland, featuring more than 150 of the nation's finest and most unique dog product vendors. Come see great dogs and a great dog show, and buy holiday gifts for all your dogs and dog friends. Best of all, it is free! Doors open 8 a.m. No entry fee; parking, $10.


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