Sweet Barks: A Valentine's Day Dog Portrait Love Fest

Posted by Mateja Lane

WATCH NOW: Zilker Bark Sweet Barks Dog Party

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Every year, Austinites flock to get their dog's picture taken by Zilker Bark.

An event called Sweet Barks takes place around Valentine's Day annually in Austin, Texas. Benefitting Austin Pets Alive!, the local no-kill shelter, dog owners bring their dogs to get their portraits taken by local dog photographer, Zilker Bark.

Zilker Bark rose to fame from his Instagram handle, which he started in 2015. Photographer Alex Hopes basically hung around Zilker Park, the beautiful green space overlooking downtown Austin, taking really good photos of cute dogs.

Austin dog owners, including myself and my dog Boone, loved his work and the rest is history.

Soon, Austinites were commissioning him for dog portraits and the idea to start a Valentine's Day event was born. The popularity of the event grew, last year photo reservation slots sold out in under an hour. This year's event at the ABGB made sure to have double the spots, keeping Alex very busy.

But not busy enough to keep from talking to Wide Open Pets.

We’re live with Alex from Zilker Bark!

Posted by Wide Open Pets on Saturday, February 10, 2018

The day was full of friends, cute dogs, great sponsors including H-E-B and PAZ Veterinary, fantastic vendors, and fabulous prizes. Fine Southern Gentlemen came with some specially-printed t-shirts and fine art prints. Austin Pets Alive! brought out some adoptable dogs and there was even a doggie kissing booth. Even though the weather was a little gloomy, happy dogs brightened up the day.

And everyone got to celebrate with their true Valentines: their dogs!

Follow Zilker Bark and Austin Pets Alive! on Facebook and Instagram and be sure to check out Zilker Bark's new photo coffee table book, "Dogs of Austin."

Tell us what you think of the cute Sweet Barks event in the comments below.

WATCH NOW: Dogs Are the Best Valentines

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Sweet Barks: A Valentine's Day Dog Portrait Love Fest