Paddle for Puppies

Benefiting the Parvo Puppy Program

at Austin Pets Alive!

Paddle for Puppies

Date: August 25, 2024

Location: Rowing Dock

Event Time: 6:45 AM – 10:00 AM

Event Timeline

Registration: 6:45am – 7:30am*

Paddle Time: 8:00am – 9:45am

*Please allow ample time for registration check-in and boat rental pick-up.



Paddle for Puppies is a unique annual fundraiser benefiting Austin Pets Alive! and presented by Austin Subaru. Each year, participants hop in a kayak, canoe, or standup paddleboard (SUP) at Rowing Dock and paddle together down Lady Bird Lake. All of the proceeds from this amazing event help to save the lives of puppies in the Parvo ICU Program at Austin Pets Alive! That’s hundreds of innocent puppy lives being saved per year, all thanks to a great morning out on the lake! 

For the safety of people and pets, no personal watercrafts are allowed this year. All watercrafts will be provided by the Rowing Dock.

Apart from all of the funds that go to benefit Austin Pets Alive!’s Parvo Puppy Program, all participants will receive a Paddle for Puppies t-shirt with registration. Come back every year for a different Paddle for Puppies shirt!

To the Austin community – thank you for your continued support. We are glad to collectively be a helping hand right here where we live & give!


We are so excited to allow dogs at the event, but please be mindful of the possible presence of toxic algae.

Please do not allow your pets to swim or drink the water if it is warm or stagnant or if you see scum, film, or mats of algae.

Similar to last year’s Paddle, should you decide to bring your pet on the water, you are doing so at your own risk and will be required to sign an additional waiver stating that you recognize the risks.

Due to parking restrictions from the city of Austin, we will not have an option to bring your personal watercraft as a part of this event.


This year, we’re planning for a normal event with no restrictions.

CAN I BRING MY DOG? Dogs WILL be allowed this year! However – due to the potential for toxins in the water, waivers will be required if you are planning to bring a dog on the water. These waivers will be available at registration when you check-in on-site.

FOR ANY GROUP PADDLERS: Each group that rents a boat from Rowing Dock will be asked to have one primary contact. The primary contact will need to bring a state-issued ID and provide a matching credit card on file.


START LOCATION: Rowing Dock on Lady Bird Lake

PARKING & TRANSPORTATION: Given limited parking options throughout Zilker Park, we heavily encourage ride-sharing, biking, or public transit via CapMetro. There is a large gravel lot east of Mopac for the easiest parking, with a 5-10 minute walk to Rowing Dock ($7/vehicle). Details here. The city of Austin has made Stratford Drive a NO PARKING zone. Please be advised to park in the designated parking areas. Violators risk being ticketed or towed.

We ask that all are respectful of our neighbors including the Nature and Science Center, and do not park in their bus/handicap lane. If you do plan to attempt to drive closer, there will be limited parking on a first-come, first-serve basis under the Mopac bridge. NOTE: Due to an increase in theft in the area, please do not leave any valuables in your car.

REGISTRATION: Registration is required PER PERSON. Kids, friends, etc – each person needs registration to be a part of this event. Boat options with registration include single kayaks, double kayaks, canoes, SUPs (stand-up paddleboards), and RUFF SUPs. Registration is non-refundable. In the sad event that you aren’t able to attend, please revel in the fact that your registration fee will still be shared as a donation to provide care to all of the Parvovirus-puppies in need at Austin Pets Alive!


Parvo Puppy Program

APA!’s Parvo Program: Signs of parvovirus infection once meant immediate and absolute euthanasia for puppies and dogs at the city shelter. The first of its kind in the nation, Austin Pets Alive!’s Parvo Puppy ICU now gives these dogs a fighting chance. The disease takes about a week to treat and once they are free of parvo, these amazing pups go on to lead normal, healthy lives and are highly adoptable! Watching these puppies go from being on death’s door to playing and eating again is what keeps our volunteers coming back to help treat them. It costs about $200 to treat each puppy that comes in with parvo so the number of lives APA! can save is directly related to donated supplies and funds that come through. The APA! Parvo Puppy Program has rescued more than 5,000 puppies from death at other shelters.