Archive for May, 2009

Dog-Friendly Cocktail Parties in Maryland

Thursday, May 28th, 2009

If you live in the Baltimore/Annapolis/Washington area then plan to attend one of the dog-friendly cocktail parties to be held this summer. They will be held on the last Friday of each month and each features a different them and benifits a different cause.

The events run from 5 pm to 8 pm on the Weather Rail outdoor patio at the Loew’s Annapolis at 126 West Street. Admission is free. The schedule is:

May 29, June 26, July 31, August 28 and Sept 25.

For more information see this page.

Dogs and Cats in the U.S.

Thursday, May 28th, 2009

There’s an ongoing question in the pet-owner world:  Are you a dog person or a cat person? But which is easier on the wallet? According to industry research firm IBISWorld, the total cost to raise a dog and cat for the full duration of their lives (an estimated 13 years) is $13,330 and $8,506, respectively.   That means it costs 56.7 percent more to raise man’s best friend opposed to a furry feline.

In the first year, a dog owner can expect to shell out $1,966, while a cat owner only expends $1,318.  From there on the price gap grows to $947 per year for canines compared to a mere $599 for felines.  Both animals have significant expenses:

cost breakdown for dogs

cost breakdown for cats

Dog food


Cat food


Vet bills


Cat litter








Vet bills




Flea control








“Although one might think the initial outlay cost for a dog or cat can be high, it really only represents a mere 2.6 percent or 3.5 percent per pet ,respectively, for the total cost over the animal’s lifetime,” explained Toon van Beeck, senior analyst with IBISWorld.  “People need to realize that owning a pet is a significant expense, and in the end, the original purchase price of the animal really doesn’t factor.”

In 2009, there will be about 169 million cats and dogs as pets in the U.S. – this represents an increase of 2.4 percent from
2008.  Of these pets, 39 percent of households own a dog and 34 percent own a cat.  Despite the problem with overpopulation, 10 percent of dogs and 18 percent of cats are adopted from animal shelters.’s 2009 Top 10 U.S. Cities to Visit With Your Dog

Sunday, May 17th, 2009

Great pet-friendly lodging, attractions, parks, beaches, shopping and dining. Visit one of these cities with your dog for a top-notch vacation.

[Editors Note: We have a separate list for resort areas and smaller resort cities. This list is for the larger cities only. The top ten resort areas list will be released in June. The last list for Top Ten Dog-Friendly Resort Areas is at this link.] compiles this list for people who want to take their dogs with them on vacation. The rankings take into account the quality of dog-friendly accommodations, transportation, beaches, parks, attractions, stores, dining and things to do with your dog.

1. San Francisco – Luxurious hotels. Plenty of pet-friendly patio dining. Many off-leash beaches and areas. Ride the cable car, walk the Golden Gate.

2. Austin – Dine in outdoor cafes. Visit the Zilker Botanical Gardens. See the Congress Street Bats. Many off-leash parks.

3. Boston – Tour Boston harbor by boat. Walk the Freedom Trail and explore many National Historical Sites. Your leashed dog is welcome on the subway.

4. Northern Virginia – Enjoy a yappy hour or dine in dog-friendly Alexandria. Take the Canine Cruise. Visit outdoor monuments and nearby Washington.

5. Portland (OR)- Enjoy off-leash areas and the famous Rose Gardens. Visit the Saturday Outdoor Market. Have a drink at the Lucky Lab.

6. Charleston (SC) – Take a ghost tour or walking tour. See the grounds of the Magnolia and Boone Hall Plantations. Visit the beach.

7. Chicago – Visit Navy Pier. Ride the Canine Cruise. See Buckingham Fountain, take a walk in Oak Park. Many dog-friendly patio restaurants.

8. San Diego – Visit fabulous dog beaches. Shop at dog-friendly Otay Ranch with its dog park. Dine outdoors and hike many parks.

9. New York – Stay in a fine hotel. Take a walking tour of lower Manhattan and the Brooklyn Bridge. Shop at Time Warner Center. See the Balto Statue and Central Park.

10. Ann Arbor – Visit Nichols Arboretum, rent a dog-friendly canoe. Visit nearby gardens and farms. Visit many local parks.

Honorable Mentions: Dallas, Madison/Wisconsin Dells, Minneapolis, Salt Lake, Seattle

See here for’s Top 10 Resort Areas to visit with a Dog in the U.S.