Movies Going to the Dogs

Lisa Rodier


Once in a while, I hear of a unique idea to support a great cause that really grabs my attention. In this case, it’s movies going to the dogs… more specifically, the Ruff Cuts Film Festival, a canine-themed event founded in 2014 by Service Dogs of Virginia (SDV). Taking inspiration from great film events such as Banff, Sundance, and Cannes, the Ruff Cuts Film Festival puts a new twist on the idea and features dog-themed independent films. Founder Peggy Law established the festival not only as an annual fundraiser for the non-profit SDV, but also as a way to celebrate the amazing relationship between people and dogs. 

Canine-themed films are submitted by filmmakers – amateur or pro – and screened at the event. Films featuring dogs and their amazing talents are welcomed, and Law would love to see entries covering dog sports, search & rescue, and work on canine cognition. SDV’s goal is to garner enough quality films to allow the festival to go on tour at events hosted by other non-profit organizations.

Now in its second year, the 2015 festival is slated for October 17 in Charlottesville, Virginia. If you’re inspired to create your own fido flick, or already have one you’d like to submit, entries are being accepted until August 1, 2015. Awards include cash prizes and the coveted, tongue-in-cheek “Palm D’og.” To learn more about supporting this great event or to submit a film, go to Ruff!