Tuesday, June 17, 2014

City Dog: Do City Dogs Need Cars?

Back when I was making the big decision to own my own dog as an adult, and I was going through the possible expenses, I came to the shocking conclusion adopting a pup would actually cost me thousands of dollars.
Wouldn't I need to car to be able to get her supplies and take her places?
Sure I lived in the city for years without a car, but since dogs aren't allowed on the buses and trains unless they're in a carrier, and since I couldn't figure out how to stuff Miss M into a duffle bag, I couldn't think of other options.
Until I did.
Here are some things we did when we didn't own a car:

Making 50lb of Dog Food Accessible:
I was very lucky that the apartment where Miss M and I first lived had a pet store a mere half block away. While it was easy for me to get to the food, I struggled walking back to my apartment carrying her 50lb bag of food.
I quickly found out about city car-sharing where I was able to i-Go all around town picking up as many 50 lb bags of food as I could haul. The cars don't want uncrated pets because they don't want pet hair on the seat, though a couple of people I know would use the cars and just use a lot of blankets and lint rollers so they didn't leave any hair.
I also realized just like I order things online to make transport easier, I could just as easily order her huge bag of dog food online. We tried out Mr. Chewy which carries high quality food that is dropped off directly at our door.

Taking a Cab with Dogs:
While dogs aren't allowed on buses or trains, they can ride in cabs if a driver decides to pick you up.
We wrote this post explaining how to get a cab to stop for you if you are with your big dog.
Or I just call ahead letting them know we're traveling with the pups and they will send a dog-friendly cab to our home. We always make sure to tip extra well so the cabs will want to pick up more dog families in the future.

The Walkable City:
We are lucky that the city is very walkable and most of the places we need to go are within walking distance. There are a lot of vets in the city and we found one near our apartment. We were always near some type of pet store. We would also go to a training class that was about 2 miles away, which was actually good for her because back then she needed that time to work off her energy.

We are lucky enough to have a car now, which I actually needed to get to go to work, though we one day dream of owning one of these instead. 

Do you think owning a dog means you need a car? How often does your pup actually travel in the car, or what are some other sans-car things that work?

But since we do have a car

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Rachel said...

I love the family bike! How awesome!!!

Hannah@Eriesistibull said...

In Erie, it's actually really difficult to just live without a car - which is a huge pet peeve of mine! I would love to live somewhere one day where I don't need a car at all, although I do think the pups would make it more difficult. I think picking your living location (although can also be difficult with dogs, especially pitbull-type) strategically around pet stores and vets is the most important. And, it is amazing what you can get delivered right to you!

Two French Bulldogs said...

No matter what, a car could be more convenient. You can always pull a wagon
Lily & Edward

JustaGirl said...

I'd love to live in an area where a car isn't needed :) that would be heaven! But in So Cal you need a car to get pretty much anywhere. And with our boxer being so sensitive to heat, a car is definitely needed!

Rachel @ My Two Pitties said...

We wouldn't be able to get much of anywhere without a car here even though we are only about 5 minutes by car to our favorite hiking trails.

I think it's silly not to let dogs on public transportation. When I lived in London we brought our dogs on the bus and underground and trains all the time. No one minded and it was never an issue.

A Wonderful Dogs Life said...

Will Mr B and Miss M travel on the bike? Then they would have their very own chauffeurs.

I would say a car is a necessity. Not just for food/supplies but also for things like trips to the ER vet in the wee hours of the night/morning.

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