Perhaps you’ve noticed that seemingly everywhere you look (especially the South End, Charlestown, Cambridge, and Somerville) there’s a new doggie daycare, dog walking service, groomer, pet boutique ( and the list goes on…) popping up on every corner. Certainly, you’ll see no shortage of search results when visiting pet business directories such as http://care.dogboston.com or http://www.yelp.com/search?find_desc=pet+boarding&find_loc=Boston%2C+MA.
The reason: a steady uptick in dog adoption in Boston over the past decade.
Boston is no stranger to the top ten lists for most pet friendly cities in the US. Relocation.com, an online job relocation guide, wrote an article just a couple of weeks ago featuring Boston 2nd on it’s list of 5 dog friendly cities, touting Boston’s great dog beaches and dog friendly cafes. http://www.relocation.com/blog/five-dog-friendly-cities
Dogfriendly.com ranked Boston #6 out of their 10 chosen top ten pet friendly cities in the US for 2010. http://dogfriendly.com/dognews/?p=767
In 2009, Rent.com compiled their list, and Boston, not surprisingly, was ranked #3 on the list, trailing only New York and Chicago. (http://www.zoomroomonline.com/dog-friendly-cities.html)
All these new services are catering to this new boom in city dwelling canines. Dog owners are spending top dollar on their pets, and literally consider them members of their family. Certainly this fact is not lost on these pet service businesses, constantly trying to determine how they can profit from this new demand. But are these services really making your dog any happier? In many case, yes! Here are 10 popular services, with reasons they’re likely to set Fido’s tail a-waggin’:
- Dog Walker- Your dog gets out of the house, goes to her favorite places, and gets to hang out with her pals while getting some fresh air and exercise.
- Doggie Day Care – Even better, your dog won’t have to spend any time home alone while you’re at work. He gets to play all day, and ends up all tuckered out at the end of it- just like you.
- Pet Boutique-The value to your dog depends on what you come home with: comfy doggie beds, homemade dog treats, warm coats for the cold weather, and many more items your pooch is likely to appreciate.
- Doggie Massage- Most people like a good massage; why wouldn’t your dog like it as well? It’s one of the best ways to relieve stress in anxious or aggressive dogs. It would certainly make his walks a lot more pleasant if he’s relaxed.
- Groomer – Ok, while most likely not your pup’s favorite place, it still has things she can appreciate. Groomers are usually happy to see her, often providing treats and praise. Once it’s all over, she feels a lot cleaner, and more importantly, her nails are clipped. Those nails can be painful when they get too long and become snagged on things while walking.
- Dog Hotels & Day Spas- South End- Yay! No stress of a kennel, and your dog has a comfortable place away from home that treats her right.
- Dog Parks – Party! Your dog has to learn to socialize with other dogs in the dog park, or she’s not allowed to go off leash. Moreover, these play sessions are huge doggie stress relievers and our equivalent of social outings.
- Animal Behaviorists – Finally, someone is paying attention to how your dog communicates instead of ignoring all his signals! The right behaviorist can speak your dog’s language.
- Professional Dog Trainers – Help your dog learn your expectations in language he can understand
- Agility Classes- These offer another great way for your dog to enjoy new experiences while channeling his energy into a fun and challenging activity.
With all these great services come a devotion to improving the quality of life of all dogs that live in the city. There’s so much to choose from, it would be nearly impossible for your dog to get bored.
Pure boredom, by the way, is how many people envision the life of a city dog. Luckily, it no longer has to be that way. These days, it almost makes sense to sympathize with those suburban dogs that have nothing but their back yard to entertain them.