Story and photos by Spc. Nathan Thome
4th Infantry Division Public Affairs Office
Hundreds of Soldiers and their Family members brought their four-legged friends to the Outdoor Pool Saturday for Doggie Day at the Pool.
Doggie Day at the Pool began three years ago when the aquatics staff had the idea of letting dogs in to swim with their owners on the last day the Outdoor Pool is open. The event has averaged 150 dogs each year.
“We close the pool Labor Day because everyone is back in school. That following Saturday is when we open it up for the dogs,” said Jennifer Pearson, Fort Carson aquatics manager. “Really, it’s just a fun time for people to come in and swim with their dogs.”
Pearson said she enjoys the event because it’s fun to watch people and their dogs interact.
“All the Families that come, and all the dogs that come, you just watch, they’ll have a blast. They just enjoy it,” said Pearson. “You’ll see so many different types of dogs here. It’s fun to watch them swimming, or at least trying to swim in the pool.”
Staff Sgt. Jeff Hartness, radiology specialist, Medical Department Activity, and his son, K.T. Hartness, spent the afternoon swimming in the deep end of the pool with their dog, Cooper.
“It was a great day at the pool,” said Jeff Hartness. “I know our dog enjoyed it. It was his first time out here, and we look forward to next year’s event.
“We actually heard about this last year, but unfortunately we didn’t get a chance to do it, so we’ve been looking forward to this,” he said. “It’s definitely a morale booster for everybody, to have the opportunity to do something like this. I don’t see any public pools doing anything like this. Everyone I saw here had a good time today.”
K.T. Hartness also said how much he liked the event.
“Today was awesome. I had a lot of fun,” he said.
“It was a great time to swim with my dog at the pool.
I wish we could do this more often.”