Pampering Pooches at Saks Fifth Avenue

By: Emily Leaman

Saks Fifth Avenue in Chevy Chase welcomed more than 200 dogs and their owners Saturday for a day of food, drinks, and pampering to benefit the Washington Humane Society. Three floors of the upscale store were filled with festive pink paw prints and free goodies for shoppers and their canine companions.

On the main level, pooches were treated to spa treatments and gourmet vegetarian eats compliments of Old Town’s Barkley Square. Lined up between designer purses and shoes, canines of all shapes and sizes indulged in aromatherapy, an aromatic “fur breeze” (a spa mist) and Barkley’s signature PAW-dicure nail treatment. The Doggie Bar featured treats handmade by Barkley Square and a team of local bakers, who put in extra hours to make enough nibbles for hundreds of hungry dogs.

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“It’s fun to pamper Benny,” said Linda Friedman of her 8-year-old rescue dog. “He’s my baby.”

But the star treatment wasn’t reserved just for Saks’ canine clientele. Dog owners spent the day sipping Champagne, white wine, and “mudslide” martinis. They sampled sushi rolls, sandwichettes, and a generous dessert spread that included palmiers, truffles, raspberry gelee, and cheesecake. And they indulged in complimentary makeovers and facials by Saks makeup artists and skincare specialists.

“I’m excited by the turnout today,” said Tara deNicolas, the event’s chief organizer, who hoped to raise at least $10,000 at Saturday’s event for the Washington Humane Society. “It’s great to see so many people and businesses out here supporting our work.”

The dog owners were pleased, too—and not just to support a good cause. As Alison Kocicharow explained, “I just really liked the idea of bringing my dog to Saks Fifth Avenue.”Want to see more photos from Washington events and parties? Click here for Washingtonian.com's photo slideshow page.