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Massages for pups as Tel Aviv celebrates Dog Day

City holds its first festival for four-legged residents to coincide with international celebrations

A Tel Aviv dog sports festive headgear at a celebration for canines held by the city on August 26, 2016 (Luke Tress)
A Tel Aviv dog sports festive headgear at a celebration for canines held by the city on August 26, 2016 (Luke Tress)

TEL AVIV — Dog owners enjoyed massages alongside their pups on Friday, as Tel Aviv celebrated its first festival for four-legged residents.

Hundreds of dogs and humans joined the festival, which was timed to coincide with Dog Day celebrations worldwide.

In addition to canine massages, children sat with their pets for joint portraits, and there was even a dog sushi stall.

Lectures on “dog emotions” took place, as did a workshop on canine homeopathy.

The city claims to be one of the most dog-friendly in the world, where it is common to take your pup to the restaurant, a party or even the office.

Research conducted by the city vet found that Tel Aviv has among the highest number of dogs per population, with one for every 17 residents, municipality spokeswoman Mira Marcus told AFP.

An Israeli man poses for a picture with his dog in the park during "The city-wide dog day" in Tel Aviv, which was timed to coincide with Dog Day celebrations worldwide on August 26, 2016. (AFP PHOTO / GIL COHEN-MAGEN)
An Israeli man poses for a picture with his dog in the park during “The city-wide dog day” in Tel Aviv, which was timed to coincide with Dog Day celebrations worldwide on August 26, 2016. (AFP PHOTO / GIL COHEN-MAGEN)

“In Tel Aviv’s dog parks you will not see a lot of owners busy on their phones. Here it is a real community — people come to create a link between themselves and their dogs,” resident and event organizer Tal Hollander, 32, said.

The municipality boasts more than 60 dog parks, including hydration stations, as well as 24/7 services for strays.

It also hosted a recent dog and owner showing of the Universal Pictures hit film “The Secret Life of Pets.”

Israelis and their dogs attend a special rooftop screening of the movie 'The Secret Life of Pets' at the Azrieli Center in Tel Aviv on July 11,2016. (Photo by Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)
Israelis and their dogs attend a special rooftop screening of the movie ‘The Secret Life of Pets’ at the Azrieli Center in Tel Aviv on July 11,2016. (Photo by Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)

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