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Animal Friends to host speed-dating event

| Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

A local animal shelter wants devoted dog lovers to open their hearts to someone new.

Ohio Township-based Animal Friends will host its third annual “Must Love Dogs” speed-dating event on Friday for those looking to mingle with potential matches who happen to share the same love for animals.

“When people bring in their dogs, it makes things more comfortable,” shelter spokeswoman Christy Bostardi said.

Each person and their dog will have the chance to meet up to 20 eligible bachelors or bachelorettes.

With a $20 donation, the evening offers participants a chance to meet one another and each dog ample time to play, Bostardi said.

Each attending person will be entered in a raffle where men have the chance to win tickets to a Pittsburgh Penguins game and women could win a Coach-brand wristlet.

During this “friendraiser” — as Bostardi called it — all dogs will be put into a playroom while their human companions partake in the speed-dating portion of the evening.

A “doggy lifeguard” will be monitoring playtime to ensure the safety of all dogs, she said.

Each person will write down every name of the person they speak with and determine whether they would like to see that person again.

It is up to each individual, however, if they would like to pursue the matches after that night.

“We like to follow up with everyone to ask if there have been any successful matches after the event,” Bostardi said.

In three years, such a match hasn't been made, Bostardi said. But she has hope.

The event is designed to encourage pet owners to become involved at the shelter, Bostardi said.

Lindsay Waugh is a freelance writer.

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