SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii -- The Porter Community Center, here, went to the dogs during the “Pets are People Too Expo,” July 21.

Canines, many dressed to impress and with their owners in tow, flocked to the center for this inaugural event, sponsored by Island Palm Communities.

The event was complete with a wide assortment of animal-friendly vendors.

This year’s theme,“Learn. Play. Shop. Adopt,” encouraged responsible pet ownership and aimed to strengthen the unique bond between people and their pets, through educational displays, live animal demonstrations and the latest in pet products and services.

“This is a great opportunity for pet owners to meet and mingle with other pet owners,” said Courtney Ruble, an Army family member.

Her dog, Ben, a 1-year-old German Shepard, agreed with a tail wag and a toothy smile.

“Events like this are great, and I hope to see more of them,” said 2nd Lt. Kyle Suchomski, 65th Engineer Battalion, 130th Eng. Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command. “It gives people and their pets a chance to socialize.”

His dog, Delmar, a 6-month-old Boston Terrier, didn’t waste any time taking advantage of the water bowls and treat stations set up for attendees.

Groomers, boarders, trainers and photographers were on hand to educate pet owners, as well as to pamper the pooches with treats, tattoos and even a chance to shine on the show “The Pet Hui,” on Oceanic Cable Channel 16.

“Everyone has pets, here, and there should be more events like these,” said Alison Thatcher, an Army family member.

Her dog, Kailani, a 1-year-old Golden Receiver/Labrador mix, took the time to make new friends during the event.

The first 100 attendees received a “Wag Your Tail” ticket, redeemable for one free toy at the “Pets are People Too Boutique” booth.

A free “Pet Buffet” provided premium dog and cat foods and treats, and pets and their owners were treated to a free, patriotic, pet photography shoot from It’s a Wild Life Photography.

The event also boasted a pet/owner look-alike contest and a best trick contest, where winners received Petco gift cards to spoil their best friends with.

“I am really happy with the turn out,” said Treva Williams, event coordinator. “Everyone is having a good time interacting with one another, and that was the goal of this event, to bring people and their pets together.”

--“Dog Days of Summer”

Enjoy the last days of summer with your four-legged friend, Aug. 13, 3 p.m., Weyand Field, Schofield Barracks.

Check out demonstrations by a military working dog unit and compete in contests, such as the dog/owner look-alike, costume, cutest, ugliest and most talented contests.

All dogs must be on a leash, in a carrier or stroller, at all times. Only social dogs are allowed. No dogs in heat.

As the sun sets, stay for the “Movie in the Park,” which will be “Beverly Hills Chihuahua.”

For more information, call (808) 655-0111.