express sat down with two of our favourite bitches, Murphy and Ruby – the brains behind Woof – The Auckland Rainbow Dog Show.

What is your favourite of all the competitions at Woof and why?

M: I love the ‘dog owner look-a-like’ as the hoomans dress themselves and us pooches up in crazy costumes. Most of them already look like us dogs. Look at Steven [Oates – Woof organiser] and I, both furry blonds with big tongues! This year Steven is introducing a new category just for kids, so I am looking forward to seeing that as us dogs love the younger members of our pack! Thanks to Nutrience dog food we have more prizes than ever!

Woof is not an official part of the Auckland Pride festival this year. Why? Bitch, spill that tea!


R: I don’t spill tea as I only drink water from my dog bowl. I know that Western Park was already booked most weekends in February and Steven and I asked many of the regular Woofers and the feedback was that they didn’t feel safe bringing us pups to a Pride event this year.

How many years has Woof been going now?

M: It’s been going longer than I have been chewing bones! This will be the sixth year us pups will be strutting our stuff down the catwalk. Who named it a catwalk?! Everyone knows us dogs are the supermodels of the pet world!

What have been your highlights from the years?

R: The effort and creativity that the hoomans put into our doggy costumes is always a highlight. Seeing the younger members of the pack having fun with us dogs and seeing all colours of the rainbow represented is also a highlight every year. Us dogs never discriminate!

You co-produce the event with your owner Steven Oates; what inspires the three of you to go to the effort of putting it on every year?

M: First of all, Steven is not my owner. He’s just driver, walker and chef for Ruby and I. We put the event on because we love bringing people and dogs together for an afternoon of fun and to raise money for the SPCA. Steven loves the fact that everyone is welcome no matter how furry you are or how many legs you have?

Have their been any incidents over the years? Bitch fights? Poo-bags thrown? That sort of thing?

R: Some years have been quite competitive where people have employed professional costume designers to make fabulous over the top costumes for us doggos. Generally, everyone is pretty relaxed and no poo-bags have every been thrown! Us rainbow doggos are pretty happy go lucky, give us a pat or a doggy treat and we are happy!

Why should every express reader (dog-owner or not) attend Woof?

M: Woof! Is an afternoon of fun for everyone, hooman or k9. All are welcome to come along and enjoy the four-legged vibes. It’s always entertaining and you never know you might get a big wet lick from me or from Steven.

The fur is set to fly at 1 pm on Sunday 3rd of March at Western Park, Beresford Street West Entrance for Woof – The Auckland Rainbow Dog Show. Barkley Manor – Dog Daycare (398 Great North Rd, Grey Lynn) will serve as a backup venue if Western Park is rained out.