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Petals and Pups 2020 - September 18 to 27

Take a bow-wow, Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers Dog-friendly itineraries unveiled and introducing Rambo, the Ambassadog!

As if petal power was not enough! The acclaimed Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers has today unveiled Petals and Pups 2020 – its official dog-friendly program, completely dedicated to hounds and their humans and in salute to Toowoomba’s first canine Ambassadog, ‘Puppy’ the Pomeranian.

In an historic move, the second ever Ambassadog in 71 years has been named – Rambo, a seven-month-old, tricolour, pure-bred Australian Shepherd, will proudly fly the canine flag this year!

“Dogs have always been a part of the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers. At the very first Carnival parade in 1950 the Toowoomba Thistle Band’s drum major, Mr Hugh Morgan, set the benchmark with his tartan-clad pooch ‘Puppy’ marching alongside the ensemble. 

Today a statue commemorating ‘Puppy’ stands in the iconic Picnic Point parkland which overlooks Toowoomba’s scenic panorama of the Great Dividing Range,” Cr James O’Shea, Chair of the Toowoomba Regional Council Environment and Community Committee said. “In 2020 we look forward to welcoming visitors and locals to celebrate with their dogs all across the city.”

In a year that has seen a raft of events cancelled due to COVID-19, the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers will bloom brightly this September as one of the first major events to be staged post-lockdown. The 2020 program features over 30 events and activations with 48 local tour departures ready to go. All events, experiences and areas will be managed with COVID-19 safe plans in place.

Over 170,000 blooms have been planted across the city’s major parks and public spaces to create a spectacular canvas of colour for much needed celebrations in September.

The pawsome Petals and Pups 2020 program boasts more than 20 dog-friendly activities and 27 off-leash parks, as well as dog-friendly cafes, restaurants and accommodation recommendations.

Rambo’s owner Howard Du Plessis said Toowoomba was a brilliant city for dog-owners. “Toowoomba dogs must truly be some of the luckiest in the country – we have the glorious Queens Park Botanic Gardens and Laurel Bank Park to adventure through, as well as 27 off-leash areas. Rambo can absolutely recommend the off-leash areas across Toowoomba, it’s one of his favourite things to do! 

Rambo and I are looking forward to welcoming dogs and their owners from far and wide this September. Like lots of millennials, Rambo loves having his photo taken, so if you see him during Carnival, come and say hi!”

Rambo was born on Christmas Day last year and is quite the celebrity in Toowoomba, even boasting his own instagram account (@rambo_the_australian_shepherd). 

Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers’ Petals and Pups program:

Rambo the Ambassadog
at Laurel Bank Park
1) Cultured Canine Itinerary - if spending a weekend strolling through perfectly manicured gardens, taking in amazing art and indulging in a long lunch (all with your canine companion in tow) appeals, then this is your pawfect pick. The days starts with some laneway love, exploring Toowoomba’s fantastic street art scene, before a visit to Picnic Point where a selfie with the famous bronze statue of “Puppy” is a must. From here, it’s a lazy lunch, before an off-leash play at Queens Park and then some petal time in the Botanic Gardens.

2) Pampered Pup Itinerary – a fur-bulous day of Instagrammable indulgence! This begins with a puppyccino (and cappuccino for the human), before some doggie day spa time (a signature cut and blow dry perhaps) followed by some well-behaved dog-friendly local luxe shopping (hello Harolds Finishing Touches) before taking in the blooms at Laurel Bank Park.

3) Adventure Dog Itinerary – it’s barking brilliant for action-packed trailblazers and starts with a hearty breakfast, a bushland adventure at Garnett Lehman Park, a snack (and a great single origin coffee for humans) before free ranging at Dr Alex Horn Park (great for sunsets)!

Pet Friendly Places to Eat:

Toowoomba locals will tell you the café scene is worth sticking around for! Plan your day around stopping in for fresh local produce filled eats and master-brewed coffee at some of the region’s best dog-friendly cafes.

- Bar Wunder – 424 Ruthven St
- Burrow Café – 117a Bridge St
- Gips Restaurant – 120 Russell St
- Ground Up – 501 Ruthven St
- Home Grown Health – 11 Railway St
- Milk & Honey Espresso – 6 Ann St
- New Brew Café – 102 Taylor St
- Pony Espresso Coffee Bar – 2a Bowen St
- Travellers Coffee House – 189 Hume Street
- The Finch - 469-473 Ruthven St
- Urth Café – 195 Hume Street

Travel Essentials

To ensure your pooch day is pawsome make sure you pack a water bottle and bowl, leash and harness, poop bags, familiar food and snacks and a ball or frisbee to chase.

What: Petals and Pups 2020 (#tcof)

When: September 18 to 27 – with parks activating every weekend in September.

For more information including dog-friendly accommodation options and directions, please visit

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