WASHINGTON, D.C. (WUSA 9) --- Stepping into an enchanting emerald-hued space inside the National Building Museum, throngs of guests gather for the 7th annual Fashion for Paws.
Jordan Samuel, a Washingtonian, is a first-time guest at this charity event that's raised nearly $700,000 for the Washington Humane Society.
"Fortunately, Washington is very good for rescues. A lot of people, a lot of rescue organizations bring dogs from South Carolina, from San Juan, Puerto Rico to this area," he said.
"Because Washington is known for its pet lovers, its dog lovers," Samuel added. He says he is an owner of a rescued Boston Terrier.
"Great dog. I never get a dog from anything but from the Humane Society or a rescue."
During the reception guests mingle with friends and furry friends who are up for adoption from the Washington Humane Society.
They surround a runway designed by Marielle Shortell of Syzygy Events International. Shortell serves as Chief Creative Officer of Fashion for Paws:
"We were really inspired by the new Louis Vuitton collection by Marc Jacobs. It was this really crisp, white-and-yellow check. And because we had multiple designers this year, we decided to streamline it a little bit and introduce the whole black concept and emerald which is the color of the year."
For first time in this event's history, two Congressmen got the honor of the Humane Hero Award: Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.) and Rep. John Campbell (R-Calif.).
"These two individuals who we awarded the Humane Hero Awards certainly tonight exemplify what it means to care about animals," said Tara De Nicolas, Executive Director of Fashion for Paws.
"They work to legislate and make sure that animals in our country are being cared for."
CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO GALLERY OF THE EVENT.
Moran and Campbell co-chair the Congressional Animal Protection Caucus.
"What we're about is to prevent the cruel treatment of other sentient beings and it's your role and it's our role as well," said Moran.
"We bring them into battle. They've borne our burdens. They're our comforters, our friends, and our companions. The least we can do with animals is treat them humanely," said Campbell to a cheering crowd.
The Washington Humane Society cares for 30,000 animals each year. Runway models raised funds for nine weeks. All proceeds go to the non-profit organization.
The top three fundraisers for 2013 were Susan Ostrowski ($37,743.90), Melinda Griffith ($24,205.00) and Dr. Ashley Gallagher ($17,026.00).
Reported/Produced by: Elizabeth Jia
WUSA 9 & WUSA9.com