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Dog-friendly vacations that give back |

26 Feb

We love to travel. We also love to help animals in need. We found that combining these two passions was easy, fun, AND dog friendly. Check out two places we visited last year and hope for a repeat this year!

Glen Highland Farm
We have visited Glen Highland Farm each year for the past 3 years. Once you visit the dog-friendly camp in upstate New York, you’ll be hooked, too! Set on 175 acres of meadows, trails, wildlife, water, and beautiful views — this is an off-leash doggy paradise! Yes, we did say “off leash”! Pups are welcome to run and play off leash! Best of all, the camp supports the Sweet Border Collie Rescue that is run out of the main house and grounds. Humans are welcome to tour the rescue and meet the adoptable pups during their stay. Over 2,000 pups have found forever homes through the rescue group! The 2014 camp season is open May 23 to September 30. Book early to get the dates and accommodations you would like! They offer tents, cabins, and RVs for your 2-night minimum stay. Glen Highland Farm is about a 4-hour drive from NYC.
(Side trips: We went out for dog-friendly ice cream, visited Cooperstown, and checked out a dog-friendly brewery — all an easy drive from the camp.)

Glen Highland Farm

Glen Highland Farm

Best Friends Animal Sanctuary
We visited Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, UT last summer and LOVED it! We stayed in an Angel Canyon cottage overlooking their horse pasture and surrounded by beautiful nature. Book early because these cabins and cottages are in high demand! Visiting pups are welcome in the accommodations, the visitor center, and the tour bus with preapproved reservations. Visiting pups are not allowed in the adoption centers or grounds. As the nation’s largest no-kill animal sanctuary, Best Friends Animal Sanctuary houses hundreds of animals including dogs, cats, rabbits, pigs, horses, birds. Mom toured the grounds and visited Dogtown and Cat World. People are able to sign up to volunteer in different areas. It really is a magical place!!
(Side trips: We visited Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, and the Coral Pink Sand Dunes! The area is the Golden Circle of national parks with many beautiful and dog-friendly stops!)

10 NYC holiday traditions perfect for dogs |

21 Nov

We love this time of year! And we especially love spending time in New York City in December. There are beautiful decorations on every corner, pop-up food festivals, craft fairs, and of course, Santa Claus!

Below are 10 dog-friendly activities and events we will check out this holiday season. Let us know if you have some doggy traditions not to miss!

Grand Central Terminal
We absolutely love Grand Central Terminal! There is dog-friendly shopping, dining (Shake Shack!) and this time of year they unleash the Holiday Fair in Vanderbilt Hall with gift ideas pawfect for everyone in your family!  The Life of Ryley had some really cute and unique doggy gifts, too! Also, don’t miss the Holiday Light Show each evening.

The Life of Ryley at Grand Central holiday shops

The Life of Ryley at Grand Central holiday shops

Shops at Columbus Circle
Another great place to get out of the cold and enjoy shopping and a pretty holiday light show! Yes, the Shops at Columbus Circle welcome dogs. Their light show “Holiday Under the Stars” runs every evening and is set to beautiful music. The Winter’s Eve party on December 2 is very crowded, but lots of fun, too.

Volunteer/Give Back
So we can’t volunteer in a soup kitchen, but there are lots of ways we can give back this holiday season. We especially like Amazon wish lists because they are easy to use and we like to shop! Ask your favorite charity if they have a wish list where you can purchase items they need. Clean your closet and donate your old towels and sheets to the local animal shelter. Check out lots of ideas here.

Lord & Taylor
Sure there are lots of department stores to visit (many are dog friendly), but Lord & Taylor is our favorite! They are very friendly to the pups and they even carry a special doggy line this season with cute toys, bowls, and sweaters from Hudson’s Bay Company and Harry Barker. Their beautiful holiday windows and interactive photo shoot are great this year!

Hudson's Bay collection at Lord & Taylor

Hudson’s Bay Company collection at Lord & Taylor

Santa Claus
In the past, the Bloomingdale’s Santa Claus has been dog friendly. He comes down from the North Pole to meet kids and pups and listen to their wishes.  Check your local pet boutique for special Santa visits, too!

Bryant Park
Love Bryant Park in every season! Especially love the Winter Village with dog-friendly shopping and dining. The shops are open through January 5. We hope they show outdoor winter movies again this year, too! Not too crowded and fun to snuggle with a pup and popcorn!

Window Shopping
Stores are slowly unveiling their holiday windows this season and we have not been disappointed! We are really excited to see the Saks windows with the Yeti! We are assuming that will be our fave this year!! Most of the NYC department stores are very dog friendly with the exception of Macy’s . . .  Racked has good holiday window information.

Lord & Taylor window

Lord & Taylor window

Holiday Markets
We love holiday markets because they often feature local shops and products. In general, the outdoor markets are dog friendly, and Racked has a list of 15 best holiday pop-up shops this season. The indoor Grand Central market is dog friendly. We’ll try to update this with other dog-friendly indoor options!

Head to Church
Once again, Christ Church will host a Blessing for the Animals on December 8 at 2 pm. The event is hosted by Cindy Adams and the New York Post. Expect a very beautiful church and a huge crowd.

Photo Opps
Kimpton Hotels usually will host a Santa Paws photo day in December, so we will watch for that information. There are beautiful photo opps at every turn this time of year. Have your camera ready! Also check your local pet boutique and shelter for Santa photo shoots.

Our friend is NYer of the week |

27 Jun

We were so happy that our friend, Audrey Hendler was recognized as NYer of the week by NY1 that we were jumping for joy. Literally!

Jumping to celebrate Audrey Hendler as NYer of the week

Jumping to celebrate Audrey Hendler as NYer of the week

Audrey was recognized for A Fair Shake for Youth a nonprofit program she founded in 2010 where trained therapy dogs visit schools and other settings to help students improve their social and behavioral skills. We have been volunteering with the program for the past 2 years and are proud of Audrey for receiving this well deserved recognition! Check out her segment that aired on NY1 earlier this month.

If you would like to learn more about A Fair Shake for Youth or volunteer with them, visit their web site for contact information.

Over 1,500 pet adoptions in Maddie’s Fund Adoption Days NYC (Video) |

3 Jun

Update on June 7: We just received the official event press release and more than 2,500 adoptions took place in the NYC area during the Maddie’s Pet Adoption Days!! It was the city’s biggest pet adoption event ever!


Last week we listed 10 reasons to adopt a dog at the Maddie’s Pet Adoption Days in NYC. We decided to check out Sunday’s large event at Petco Union Square. It was a busy and bustling scene in the hot sun! We even saw a cat getting a bath to cool down! Kudos to Rock & Rawhide, the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals, and the Petco Foundation for helping to make the event a success!

Happy to report that over 1,500 adoptions took place this weekend!

It’s National Volunteer Week – Ideas for dog lovers |

23 Apr

We love to volunteer! It’s a great way to meet new people, learn new things, and of course, give back to the community. With volunteer week upon us, we thought we would share a few ideas where doggy lovers may want to make an impact. And remember, you don’t have to make a huge time commitment! Whether you have a free hour every day, every week, or every month, there is something for everyone! There is even an “It’s My Park Day” where you can volunteer in your fave doggy park!

Yorkie Rescue Volunteers

Yorkie Rescue Volunteers


Animal Haven Shelter hosts a Caring Kids program on Friday afternoons from 4:00 to 5:0 pm. The program introduces children and teens to basic animal care and informs them about existing issues in animal welfare.

A Fair Shake For Youth uses certified therapy dogs to teach at-risk youth dog-handling skills. The basic hands-on work is complemented by guest speakers, field trips, and videos, all of which serve to demonstrate the exceptional capabilities of dogs, the power of the animal-human bond, and help the youth develop prosocial skills and behaviors.

Unleashed is an after-school program that transforms the lives of middle school girls by involving them in all aspects of puppy rescue.


Although many therapy dogs do visit hospitals and nursing homes (Cubby does and she loves it!) there are so many other facilities and opportunities for you and your trained therapy dog. There are reading programs, children’s programs, support groups, and so much more!

The Good Dog Foundation promotes the use of animal-assisted therapy. Good Dog’s mission is to elevate the stature and promote society’s understanding of the therapeutic value of the human-animal bond.

The ASPCA is the East Coast Affiliate of Pet Partners, a national organization that aims to improve human health through the assistance of service and therapy animals.

Also check out Angel on a Leash.


The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals offers many great volunteer opportunities. Their website includes information and links to the Alliance Participating Organizations. We love Animal Haven Shelter where we adopted Cubby.

Animal Care & Control has simplified their training with new online courses.

Best Friends Animal Society hosts several events in the New York area every year including a huge Super Adoption event. This is a great opportunity to work directly with animals and many rescue groups and shelters.

If you have a favorite dog breed, see if there is a breed rescue group in your area. We love Yorkie 911 Rescue and Maryland Westie Rescue. The Mayor’s Alliance does list many breed rescue groups.


Volunteer with PAWS NY to help keep people with their pets in times of need. PAWS NY helps individuals care for their pets when physical or financial barriers prevent them from doing so on their own.

Volunteer to help the Humane Society with their Pets for Life hotline. The Pets for Life NYC Program is an animal surrender prevention program dedicated to helping people resolve problems that could otherwise lead them to surrender their pets to the city’s animal shelter system.


Volunteering away from the city can seem like a vacation! Check out:

Hike with an Adoptable Dog with Discover Outdoors.

Farm Sanctuary

Glen Highland Farm

Woodstock Farm


Check volunteer databases for opportunities. VolunteerMatch is a great place to start.