I own Shepherds, a Leonberger, Pomeranians and a Pom/Chi Mix. My little dogs have the same rules as the big ones. I would never allow my Shepherds to rush a dog - I don't allow my little ones either. My newest Pom thinks its ok - it has been a **** of a time trying to curb it, but we continually work on it. He is leashed when out because he still can't be trusted. The owner admitted he had been "trying to control Toby all day"...um well he is 3 1/2 lbs, not sure how hard that is to control? And if that was a Rottweiler that was misbehaving, would you have brought him home before the parade?
As for the Rescue - it is ALWAYS a very bad idea to have rescue dogs walk in a big parade. There is just too much that can happen. Have an adoption fair/day/meet and greet - whatever - but don't put those dogs into an overwhelming situation like a parade and hope for the best.
I agree Wolfstraum, stupid people on both sides.