A new set of dancers are joining the Snow Queen, the Sugar Plum Fairy, The Tsar of the Mice and the Nutcracker to take centre stage – a group of homeless dogs in search of families! Rescue dogs from Stray Rescue of St. Louis are joined by dancers from Saint Louis Ballet in a delightful series of photographs dubbed the Muttcracker.
The Nutcracker ballet is a cherished tradition during the Christmas holidays and much beloved by families all over the world. So it made sense to Dancers & Dogs to bring together their two favorite loves to help dogs in need.
Kelly Pratt Kreidich from Dancers & Dogs told Reshareworthy.com, “The idea behind Dancers & Dogs came about from my two greatest loves: dance and animals. We thought photographing the combination of professional dancers and dogs of all different breeds and sizes could make for some interesting images, by making different shapes and showing their interactions.”
Now in its third year, the Muttcracker features the wonderful dancers from Saint Louis Ballet and the rescue animals from Stray Rescue of St. Louis in a series of photos to help the animals get adopted and to support the arts!
Kreidich explains, “We started the Muttcracker project with Stray Rescue and St. Louis Ballet three years ago as a fun way to show rescue dogs (and cats!) in an uplifting and whimsical way.”
“Many of these animals have been through real hardships – from being on the street, being malnourished and sometimes severely abused. Muttcracker shows them in a hopeful light, by pairing them with characters from The Nutcracker.”
This year’s Muttcracker features dogs with special needs, a dog who faced incredible odds and survived, an adorable pup and a cat named Squishy.
Brice and Eckerle are two special-needs dogs that came from a shelter that did not have the resources to help them. “The Sugar Plum Fairy bestows nothing but happy wags and full bellies to Brice and Eckerle,” writes Dogs and Dancers. “They may look and move a little differently, but they are full of happiness and love!”
“Jumbo Jack has found a new Doll friend for the holidays!”
“Jumbo Jack is one of Stray Rescue of St. Louis ‘s biggest warriors. He was shot in the face, and had to have half of his lower jaw removed. He had to eat through a feeding tube for months.”
“But the best news! – Jumbo Jack actually just found a forever home last week. Congrats sweet boy!”
“Junior heard something about sweet treats…thought maybe the Reed Flute dancer could share some Marzipan with her? She might share some kisses in return!”
Then there’s Squishy. This sweet kitty cat has hydrocephalus (water collects around the brain). “Squishy is in need of a medical foster in the St. Louis area, so if you have a quiet home, and are up for taking care of this sweet girl, contact Stray Rescue of St. Louis.”
The past years’ Muttcracker photos were a great success, giving the featured animals new beginnings.
“All of the animals from the first two years of Muttcracker found homes within a month or so of being featured,” says Kreidich. “Most within days!”
In Iris’ case she returned home after being lost.
The pets featured in 2020 is off to a great start. “Several of the animals from our 2020 Muttcracker have already found homes as well,” adds Kreidich.
You can see more of the Muttcracker photos at Dancers and Dogs Facebook page.
Visit the Dancers and Dogs website to enjoy more wonderful photographs.
This year’s pandemic is shuttering many theatres and venues to live performances, instead many ballets are opting for live video streams. Saint Louis Ballet is among them and you can find out more about their 2020 Nutcracker performance and how to support them at the Saint Louis Ballet website.
Stray Rescue of St. Louis is always looking for supporters and potential adopters. Visit their website for more details.