Frequently Asked Questions

DOG JOG AND 5K RUN

frequently asked questions

Frequently Asked Questions

For general information about the Dog Jog and 5K Run, including the event schedule, location and registration fees, please visit the event information section of our website.

What is the Dog Jog and 5K Run?
The 20th Annual Dog Jog and 5K Run is a morning full of fun for the whole family – including your four-legged friends! All net proceeds benefit the pets awaiting homes at the Richmond SPCA. The day’s activities consist of a competitive, timed 5K Run, a “Little Paws” Fun Run, a leisurely one-mile Dog Jog and our Vendor Fair which includes both Kids’ and Pets’ Fun Zones. The day concludes with our Awards Ceremony.

When and where is the Dog Jog and 5K Run?
All events take place at the Richmond SPCA’s Robins-Starr Humane Center at 2519 Hermitage Road on Saturday, March 26, 2022 if you are participating in person and not through our Run Anywhere option. The 5K Run begins promptly at 9:30 a.m. The “Little Paws” Fun Run starts at 10:30 a.m. The Dog Jog begins at 11 a.m. and is followed by our Awards Ceremony. The Vendor Fair begins at 9 a.m. and will be located on our grounds, outdoors. For our full schedule of events at the Dog Jog and 5K Run and information about our location, please visit our event information section of our website.

What if the weather is bad?
The Dog Jog and 5K Run is a rain-or-shine event and there is no scheduled inclement weather date. Because this is an important fundraiser that the Richmond SPCA depends upon to support the care of homeless animals, it is not our policy to issue refunds to participants who are unable to attend.

Will the Richmond SPCA’s retail shop and adoption center be open?
Yes. Our retail shop and our adoption center will open at 11 a.m. on the day of the Dog Jog and 5K Run.

Will food and drinks be available for purchase?
Yes. Food trucks will attend our Vendor Fair. Water will be available for purchase from our food truck vendors, and we will provide water for human and dog walkers and runners, but you are also welcome to bring your own water from home. Please, no glass containers.

When can I pick up my goodie bag, bib number and T-shirt?
Pre-registered Dog Jog and 5K participants may drop off donations and pick up their goodie bags, bib numbers (5K participants only) and T-shirts in our drive-through packet pickup on Monday, March 21 from noon and 7 p.m. or on Tuesday, March 22 from 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. in the front parking lot at the Richmond SPCA (2519 Hermitage Road). We encourage participants to pick up their packets in advance if possible to avoid lines and reduce congestion in the registration area on the day of the event.

You may pick up packets on behalf of team members or friends. No special ID will be required, but we will ask you to sign your name by their name on the registration list, stating that you picked up their materials. If you are a team captain and plan to pick up goodie bags and T-shirts for your entire team, please notify us in advance by emailing jjones@richmondspca.org and don’t forget to let your team members know so that they don’t also try to pick up their materials.

Where should I park?
Parking is free at The Diamond at the Pink, Yellow and Orange Lots. The lots are a short walk (about 2 city blocks) from the Richmond SPCA. As you exit the lot on Hermitage Road, turn right, and you will see the Richmond SPCA. There will be handicapped parking available at the Richmond SPCA. If you need handicapped parking, please contact Laurie Mavica at lmavica@richmondspca.org so she can reserve a space for you. Please be advised that space is limited.

Questions about the Dog Jog

When should I arrive to participate in the Dog Jog?
Registered Dog Jog participants should arrive by 10:30 a.m. If you need to pick up your T-shirt and goodie bag, please arrive by 10 a.m. Be sure to allow an extra 5 to 10 minutes to walk from the parking area on the Hermitage Road side of the Diamond (Green and Pink lots), located at the corner of Hermitage Road and Robin Hood Road. The walk is approximately .2 miles from our center.

What are the safety rules or requirements for participation in the Dog Jog?
The following rules are in effect during the course of the day’s activities, including the one-mile Dog Jog:

  • One dog per person in the Dog Jog. Multiple people may walk with one registered dog, but we ask that each participant not walk more than one dog during the Dog Jog.
  • Please display ID tags on your pet’s collar and keep him or her on a short leash and under control at all times. Flexi/retractable leads are not permitted.
  • We ask that participating pets be current on vaccinations (proof not required), at least 6 months of age and not be in heat/season.
  • Please be kind to your four-legged companion and maintain a leisurely pace during the Dog Jog.

My dog (or I) cannot run a full mile. Can we still participate?
Absolutely! Most dogs and their guardians who participate prefer to walk the one-mile loop instead of running it. We will have refreshing water stops along the way for both two-legged and four-legged Dog Jog participants. View our Dog Jog course map.

Are strollers allowed in the Dog Jog?
Stollers/baby joggers are allowed in the Dog Jog but not in the 5K. If you are strolling your child, we ask that you bring a friend or family member to walk your dog.

I want to walk in the Dog Jog in a group with a dog is already registered, or no dog. How much does that cost?
There is no charge for an additional person to walk with a dog that is already registered. If you would like to fundraise and help us by being counted in our number of participants, we encourage you to register using our Cat Nap option, which does not include a T-shirt or goodie bag. Our Cat Nap has no registration fee.

May I walk or jog in the Dog Jog with a pet currently in the care of the Richmond SPCA?
Thank you for wanting to include pets awaiting adoption in the fun! This registration option is open only to current Running Buddies™ volunteers who have been active in the past six months. If you would like to become a Running Buddy, please click here for more information. Active Running Buddies will receive a special code that will allow them to register to run with a dog currently in the care of the Richmond SPCA. Questions? Please contact our volunteer department at 804-521-1329.

Questions about the 5K Run

When should I arrive to participate in the 5K Run?
Registered 5K runners should arrive by 9 a.m. as there is a short walk to the race start line. If you need to pick up your shirt, bib number and goodie bag, please arrive by 8:45 a.m. Please allow an extra 5 to 10 minutes to walk from the parking area on the Hermitage Road side of the Diamond (Green and Pink lots), located at the corner of Hermitage Road and Robin Hood Road. The walk is approximately .2 miles from the lot to our center.

Can my dog run the 5K with me?
Dogs are not permitted in the 5K for safety reasons and to allow us to have a sanctioned 5K race. We encourage those who are participating in the 5K to treat their pup instead to a leisurely one-mile walk in the Dog Jog. If you’re participating in both events, please have a buddy there to watch your dog while you run the 5K.

What is the course like?
The 5K course is flat, fast and competitive. The race is sanctioned, chip-timed and measured according to USAT&F Standards. View our 5K course map.

May I walk the 5K?
Yes. The 5K run is a competitive, timed event, but participants are also welcome to walk the course.

Are strollers allowed in the 5K?
Strollers are not allowed in the 5K run. They are, however, allowed in the one-mile Dog Jog.

May I participate in the 5K using a wheelchair?
Racing wheelchairs are permitted in the 5K, however cycles of any kind (including hand cycles) are not permitted.

When and where will the 5K finish times be posted?
They will be posted within an hour and a half of the finish of the 5K at the front entrance of Smoky’s Training Center. They will also be linked on our Dog Jog and 5K Run website after the event.

Are awards given out to top 5K finishers?
Awards are given to first, second and third place overall finishers (male/female), as well as first, second and third place finishers in each age group (male/female, age groups are five-year increments and range from ages 5 to ages 75+). The awards ceremony will be held as soon as 5K results are posted and fundraising totals for prizes have been tallied after the end of the Dog Jog. Awards are announced around noon and we encourage everyone to enjoy the Vendor Fair while we tally results. Learn more about the awards that will be given out this year!

Will water and snacks be available to 5K runners after the race?
Yes. We will provide bottled water and fruit for our runners and walkers.

Questions about the “Little Paws” Fun Run

How old do you need to be to participate?
Children ages 4 to 10 can participate.

Where will it begin and end?
The race will begin in front of the Richmond SPCA and end in front of Feed More, located on Rhoadmiller Street.

When should we arrive to participate in the 5K Run?
Kids should arrive by 10:15 a.m. and gather in front of the Richmond SPCA building.

May I participate with my child?
One parent or guardian may run with a child if they wish. The parent does not need to register.

Will the kids receive anything after completing the race?
Each child will earn a special prize for participation.

Does it cost anything to sign my child up?
No. This race is free for kids to participate in.

Questions about the Run Anywhere 5K or Dog Jog

How do I participate?
If you can’t join us in-person at the Richmond SPCA on March 26, then we welcome you to participate with us from anywhere on Friday, March 25, Saturday, March, 26 or Sunday, March 27. Run, walk or jog with your dog by your side in your favorite park, trail or neighborhood streets. Participating in the Run Anywhere Dog Jog or the 5K Run is easy and interactive, thanks to the free GPS tracking RaceJoy appDownload the app today, available on the Apple App Store and Google Play.

Are awards given out to top 5K Run finisher who participate in the Run Anywhere option?
Absolutely. In order to qualify, you must track your participation using the RaceJoy app. Each registering participant will receive an assigned bib number in their race packet, which they will enter into RaceJoy when logging in. Awards are given to first, second and third place overall finishers (male/female), as well as first, second and third place finishers in each age group (male/female, age groups are ten year increments and range from ages 5 to ages 80+). Learn more about the awards that will be given out this year

Can you provide me with more information about how to use the RaceJoy app?
Sure thing! Please visit our race timing page for more information.

COVID-19 Safety

What safety precautions should I know about?
Please visit our COVID-19 safety page on our website for more information.

Registration/Website Questions

How do I register to participate?
You may register online at richmondspca.org/dogjog. Online registration is highly encouraged as it conserves resources and allows more time and funds to be dedicated to our core mission. If you prefer to register offline, please contact Janae Jones at 804-521-1309. You may mail checks to the Richmond SPCA, but please only drop off registration fees paid in cash in person at our front desk.

Online registration closes at 5 p.m. on Friday, March 25. After that time, you may register in person on the day of the event between 8:15 and 9:15 a.m. for the 5K, and between 9:30 and 10:30 a.m. for the Dog Jog. We encourage you to pre-register for our “Little Paws” Fun Run so we have an accurate idea idea of how many kids will be joining us, but it’s not necessary.

I cannot login with my username and password for previous years. What’s wrong?
We are using a new system for our 20th Annual Dog Jog and 5K Run event this year. You will not be able to log in with your username and password from prior events we have hosted. Please register as a new user with RunSignUp.

Questions about Fundraising and Donations

What is the overall fundraising goal for the Dog Jog and 5K Run, and how is it reached?
Our fundraising goal for the Dog Jog and 5K Run this year is $172,000. That goal is reached through sponsorship dollars, registration fees and donations in support of registered participants and teams.

Is there a required amount that participants must fundraise to participate?
No. Any amount that you raise will have a lifesaving impact on homeless pets in the care of the Richmond SPCA! We recommend setting your goal at $100, but there is no required amount that you must fundraise. You may set and change your goal at any time.

Not all of my donors’ names and donation amounts are showing up on the scroll mechanism on my personal fundraising page. Why?
Donors have the option to have their name and donation amount disclosed in the recognition scroll. If you do not see the name of a particular donor, he or she has chosen to remain anonymous.

A donor accidentally gave his or her donation to the event’s donation page, when it was meant to be added to my fundraising total. How can I fix this?
Please contact Laurie Mavica at lmavica@richmondspca.org or 804-521-1318, and she can easily assign the gift to the correct person or team.

Can matching gifts be applied to my fundraising total?
Yes. Gifts that you or others make to your team or individual fundraising effort may be matched by employers if they approve the match. Please check with your employer to find out if a match can be made for the gift, and to get the necessary paperwork. Copies of any matching gift paperwork may then be sent to the Richmond SPCA to the attention of Janae Jones by email to jjones@richmondspca.org. Once we are in receipt of your paperwork we will apply the match to your total. Please be sure to make a note on the paperwork that the match is to be applied to the Dog Jog and 5K Run.

Are donations raised in support of my participation tax-deductible for the donors?
Yes. Each donor, whether they donate online or by check or cash, will receive an email or mailed letter stating the tax-deductibility of their gift. Registration fees or T-shirt purchases, however, are not tax deductible.

Why is my registration fee not showing up on the fundraising total on my personal or team page?
In order to get an accurate snapshot of donations raised in support of this event, registration fees do not count toward fundraising/donation totals. One reason for this is to level the playing field when it comes to fundraising prizes, so that small teams have an equal chance to compete for prizes as teams with many members. Another reason is that we account for registration fees separately from donations, for tax purposes, so it is important that we differentiate between the two.

I have offline donations (cash or check) that I would like to enter. How do I do that?
We will add offline donations to your fundraising total once we have received them at the Richmond SPCA. It’s a great idea to use our offline donation collection form to keep track of your offline donations. You may mail checks to the Richmond SPCA, but please only drop cash off in person. Checks can be mailed to the Richmond SPCA at 2519 Hermitage Road, Richmond, VA 23220. Cash donations can be dropped off at our front desk. Please place all donations in an envelope with your contact information on the outside in case we have any questions, along with your donors’ contact information so they may be properly credited and receipted. If you have any questions, please call 804-521-1308.

Can I make a donation to a team?
Yes. Donations may be made in support of individual participants, as well as entire teams. If you donate through an individual’s fundraising page and the person is a member of a team, your donation will show up as part of the team’s fundraising total, as well as the individual’s.

How are top fundraisers recognized?
Our top three adult and youth fundraisers and our top fundraising teams will be recognized at our awards ceremony at 12:15 p.m., which will occur as soon as 5K results are posted and fundraising totals for prizes have been tallied after the end of the Dog Jog. Incentive prizes will be provided for all participants who raise more than $250. Learn more about our top fundraiser prizes that will be offered this year!

Team-Related Questions

How do I form a team?
Have a group of friends, neighbors or co-workers who would like to participate together? Form a team with a fundraising goal and compete for great prizes! You can create a team online at richmondspca.org/dogjog. Create a customized team page to communicate with your team, invite people to join, and rally the support of friends and family at richmondspca.org/dogjog! Learn more about being a team captain.

Do donations to personal fundraising pages count towards our team’s goal?
Yes. If you donate through an individual’s fundraising page and that person is a member of a team, your donation will show up as part of the team’s fundraising total, as well as the individual’s.

I am a team captain. How do I invite people to join my team?
There are two ways to add members to your team:

  1. Prospective team members may search for your team by clicking “Join an existing team” when they register and join from there, whether or not they have received an invitation from you.
  2. If you have registered as an individual but would like to join an existing team, please contact Laurie Mavica at lmavica@richmondspca.org or 804-521-1318 for us to manually add you to an existing team.

Do I have to join a team?
No, you may participate as an individual or as part of a team.

Is there a minimum or maximum number of members per team?
No. A team may be as few as one person or as many as hundreds!

Is there a minimum amount that each team has to raise?
No. We encourage all team members to fundraise, but there is no minimum requirement.

Do all team members have to register for the same event(s)?
No. Some team members can run the 5K, some may walk the Dog Jog, and some may participate in both events. Participants may also select the Cat Nap registration option to fundraise from afar if they are not able to attend the Dog Jog and 5K Run in person.

How are team fundraising goals determined?
Team goals are set by the team captain, and can be increased at any time.

If your question was not answered here, please email Laurie Mavica, Manager of Events, at lmavica@richmondspca.org or call her at 804-521-1318. Thanks!

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