My suitcase had been packed for two weeks. I meticulously planned each outfit down to what jewelry I would be wearing. Now the day that I had circled on my calendar had finally arrived.
As we began our eight hour car drive to Atlanta, Georgia, I started to imagine what BarkWorld would be like. Would there be dogs as far as the eye can see? Would I actually be able to hobnob with celebrities?
We checked into our hotel and decided to grab some lunch. Afterwords, we headed to the Loews Hotel to get registered for BarkWorld. We received our badges and an epic swag bag.
My official BarkWorld badge!
Check out all of the amazing items in our swag bags!
The first event to be held was Bark in the City. We were able to dine out on the terrace of the Loews Hotel with other expansion pass holders and their pooches.
I was so excited to see my favorite blogging dog, Preston!
I melted when I met Max! Look at that underbite!
Meet Echo! This adorable husky was a perfect gentleman.
Mango is a certified therapy dog with TDI!
On Thursday, we started bright and early with a tour of the CNN building. Having majored in Mass Communications-Journalism, I loved every minute!
Live from CNN, it’s Lauren!
This is an actual set from inside a studio at CNN.
After lunch, we headed back to the Loews Hotel for BarkBites, a speed-dating session for brands and influencers. It was fast-paced, but we met some amazing people and learned about some truly philanthropic companies. Shorty Rossi then took the stage with his amazing Pitbull, Francis!
Shorty and Francis were awesome!
Bark’s Nite Out was a fun dining event where we got to meet even more fabulous pet influencers and, of course, more dogs!
Cocoa the Chihuahua could not be any more adorable in that tutu!
This pooch was rescued from Sochi! He has an issue with one of his back legs, but you would never know it!
It’s Instagram sensation Leona the Lion!
Check out Louie rocking that sweater!
I always love meeting wheelchair doxies!
Friday was a marathon of keynote speakers. It was exhausting, but I learned so much!
I was beyond honored to do a book swap with Seth Casteel!
Forget posing with cats! Travis DesLauier posed with a copy of Priceless Penny!
Aly from Why Does My Dog is a fantastic speaker and an awesome person!
Meeting Deirdre from Pinups for Pitbulls was amazing! Her passion for Pitbulls is contagious and she is an amazing speaker!
We then took a break to support Tomlyn Products. They are going to send a case of their product to dogs serving in the armed forces for every photo they are tagged in.
After dinner, we were treated to a private screening of the ASPCA’s Second Chance Dogs! I only cried at the end.
On Saturday, we listened to more fabulous keynote speakers. They were hilarious as well as informative.
I was beyond excited to meet Brian Fanzo! He even flashed the signature peace sign in honor of Priceless Penny!
Meeting Nala cat’s parents was amazing!
I loved listening to presenters Bryan Kramer and Daniel Lemin.
Hamming it up with Shorty and Francis.
I am proud to be a Rescue Hero and support Halo Pets!
April and Binky are from Happy Tabby Cat Cafe right in Atlanta!
I was sad to see the conference end. I was blessed to make so many new friends who also have a passion for rescuing animals. All of the celebrities that I met were so friendly and down to earth. We will definitely be back next year!
This is exactly how I felt at the end of BarkWorld!