Pugs For President 2012View Slideshow »
It's an election year for people... and for pugs! Case in point, Portland's pug lovers got together over the weekend to vote for their own president at the 12th Annual OHS Pug Crawl.
The largest gathering of pugs in the country was held at MacTarnahan's Taproom in Northwest Portland on Sunday. This year's theme was "Pug Nation: A Better Pug for a Better America!" The fundraising event for the Oregon Humane Society (OHS) attracted roughly 500 dogs and 1,000 people.
"Pug Crawl is a Portland tradition that pug lovers started 12 years ago," said David Lytle, public affairs manager for OHS. "It's almost like a cult event because people just come out to this every year automatically."
According to Lytle, the event was launched by a group of pug lovers. "Stephanie Brown and a bunch of her pug-loving friends started the event in another part of town going from pub to pub. But the event has become so big that they were happy to hand it over to the Oregon Humane Society several years ago."
A street was closed down for the event and pugs — many of them in costume — and pug lovers came to hang out with their friends and participate in the Parade of Pugs. This year, 92 pugs competed for the title of "President of Pug Nation."
"The criteria for choosing the winner are based on creativity and theme," explained Lytle.
Portland is home to several celebrity pugs who made an appearance at the event, including Jenny the Pug, who is able to push a stroller, and Minnie and Max, head-tilting pugs who have appeared on national television shows such as Ellen and The Tonight Show.
In the end, Izzy, who was dressed as an eagle, was chosen as the President of Pug Nation. Proud owners Eric and Wendi Barber said they stayed up until 2 am to finish making Izzy's costume.
The title of Vice President of Pug Nation went to Charlotte, who was dressed as Rosie the Riveter.
The winners went home with a gift basket, which included a gift certificate for a massage for their dogs and many other goodies.
If you missed the festivities this year, you can check out next year's Pug Crawl. "The event has been growing bigger and bigger every year," noted Lytle.