For Nic and Paige Dowd, dogs are a part of their everyday lives. So it was natural for them to come out to the second Caps Canines Adoption Day cared for by Olde Towne Pet Resort at Homeward Trails Rescue Center in Fairfax Station, Va. on Sunday afternoon.
Nic grew up with all kinds of animals - dogs, cats, hamsters, lizards - you name it he probably had one at some point in his life. He loves animals so much that if hockey hadn't become his career, he would have become a veterinarian.
"When I went to school, I studied biomedicine and If I hadn't played hockey, I was probably going to go to vet school," he said.
When the pair met in college, they bonded over their passion for animals and began fostering dogs while still in school and they continue to do so today.
Throughout the time that Nic and Paige spent at Homeward Trails Rescue Center on Sunday, they frequently found themselves playing and bonding with the dogs - trying to keep themselves from falling in love and taking them all home.
"My wife definitely wanted to take one home," Nic said. "We would take home every single one of these dogs if we could."
Nic also engaged with families that were there to adopt dogs and talked to them about what they were looking for.
Being part of an organization that is so involved with a cause such as dog adoption and the Homeward Trails Rescue Center is special for the Dowds.
"[The Capitals involvement] is great, not only does it allow us to get into the community but its towards a great cause," he said. "There's a ton of animals out there so who need homes so as much as we can do to get the animals adopted is important."
The first Caps Canines adoption day back in December saw 12 dogs get adopted and Sunday's event saw another 11. A total of 23 dogs have been adopted on days that the Washington Capitals are involved.
All dogs adopted at Caps Canines events receive a complimentary Caps Canines membership with a kit that includes a leash, collar and toy. The dogs also receive a spa bath or two days of day camp courtesy of Olde Towne Pet Resort.
For more information on Caps Canines head to washcaps.com/capscanines