The Crunch goes to the dogs for a night

I saw two drop-the-gloves fights by men on the ice but no pull-the-leash fights by dogs in the stands.

Even though the Syracuse Crunch lost 2-0 to the Rochester Americans Saturday night in an American Hockey League game at the Onondaga County War Memorial, Dog Night was a smashing success.

This hockey rocks!

This hockey rocks!

Ellie B aka Dogamous Pyle was a good dog sandwiched between myself and my dear wife Karen. The action on the ice actually drew her attention every now and again. Crashes against the boards on our end of the ice and any toots of an air horn and her ears stood right up.

Hey George and Elisabeth!

Hey George and Elisabeth!

She had plenty of attention from the row ahead, and had no reservations about butting into the conversations of my wonderful daughter Elisabeth and her terrific boyfriend George Three. To their left and in front of me were George’s parents George Two and Sue. Sue brought a baggie of treats, so in no time at all, to Ellie she was Mom Two.

More than 6,100 in the house.

More than 6,100 in the house.

Officials announced a sold-out crowd of more than 6,100, but they did not say how many dogs were with their owners on the stage end of the old hockey rink. We were trying to estimate, and thought that it was more than 100. All in all, the animals and people in our doggie section all got along pretty well.

And so I offer you a gallery of good dogs.

What’s the wildest place you’ve brought your pet? Weirdest? What’s your favorite doggie hockey game photo, and why?

37 thoughts on “The Crunch goes to the dogs for a night

  1. I think that is SO FRIGGIN COOL that dogs were allowed to come! Now you know the next time you leave Ellie B at home, she’s gonna think you’re out at a hockey game without her. :/ My favorite photo is of her, of course, and it’s the one where she’s nosing in between Elisabeth and George Three. She’s so cute! πŸ˜€

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  2. That’s such fun Mark. Awesome photos. My parents used to raise labs and i saw the fun picture of the brown lab staring at the people eating. Our labs would sit there and watch every forkful travel to your mouth. And they would drool. They were too well mannered to try to grab anything (unless you left it unattended, then it was fair game). Having the dogs at the game sounds like such fun. i wonder what Ellie thought of the whole process – something new for her. She looked really well behaved Mark – a sure sign of a well adjusted animal.

    Neat post Mark – I’ve never seen a professional sports event where dogs were invited. So cool.

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    • Ellie B was extremely well-mannered the entire evening, Paul. We were proud of her. She watched the game, the people and the other dogs. I had to hold her leash at all times so she wouldn’t try to join the players, the people or the other dogs if the mood struck her, but that’s how our spirited dog will be. πŸ™‚

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  3. Woof, woof! I have been contemplating getting a perro and this post is making it more difficult to say no! What cutie pies! Although, the award for best looking and best behaved goes to Ellie B, of course! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

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  4. I don’t get this. So…they allowed dogs into the arena? As a promotion? I’ve been around for a few years and I’ve never heard of this. That’s pretty remarkable. Weren’t there any dog fights? Or feces? I’m thinking about the logistics of a promotion like this.

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    • Once a season they hold Pucks for Paws, Mark. They invite the local rescue groups to set up in the concourse to spread information about rescues, and dog owners can buy tickets to bring pooch to the game. All of us were in the same section, behind one of the goals. Human tickets were discounted to $15 and dog tickets were $5. Dogs got a seat, too, so there was space. I think people were smart enough not to bring dogs that don’t get along well with other dogs or strange people to the game. There were maybe 100 dogs, and other than some flirting and a couple of anxious whines and pompous barks, I saw nothing unusual. Just like people in a bar, in other words. They left a door open right at the side for the call of nature.

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  5. Aw, that’s fun. I’m not sure how we’d handle all four of ours though. We have a big fenced-in yard and that’s about the extent of their social hopping right now. In the spring we’ll hit up trails and dog parks, but we keep them away from human places because humans make them too darn happy.

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    • Different environment, different outcomes, Jay. When I worked out of the house, too, we brought Ellie B the pup to doggie day care for a half-day twice a week and she became socialized with other dogs and people.

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  6. My dog refuses to acknowledge the inherent right of other dogs to exist within her line of sight–I could never take her to an event like this, which is too bad. It seems like it’d be pretty cool.

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  7. I never took a dog to anything but I did watch my brothers dogs, when they tired in a race. His big Newfoundland and Golden Retriever were good runners, while younger, but they wear out and need to sit down. My sister in law, when around, likes taking care of them when they get tired and they will lie down for her, too. They are motivated by little dog bones or ‘cookies’ to be good. I am not sure how they would act in a hockey arena, Mark! Your photos are so fun to study and love the one with Ellie B. leaning into George III and Elisabeth, also that George’s mother brought treats. What a great family activity!

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    • It was a great family night, Robin. Ellie B acted wonderfully the whole game. I was really proud of her. I forgot to put in my story how they showed her up on the video screen three times!

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