The canine caretakers at Lucky Dog Daycare & Resort of South Tampa act as dog-sitting concierges during a pup's private or social boarding. During private stays, shy, aggressive, or hypoallergenic pets pair with a kennel counselor for individual playtime, four to six walks a day, and free use of the outdoor romping grounds. Pets can carouse with packs of friendly canines during a social stay, frolicking with like-sized pals in the grassy play area, relaxing in the expansive Astroturf sunning spots, or swan-diving into the heat-beating water park complete with pools and mist sprayers. The air-conditioned interior offers a weather-friendly alternative to the outdoors, with a team of dog enthusiasts constantly supervising the pet playtime. Owners can virtually check-in with best friends over the live feed that streams across the Internet from 16 cameras on constant alert. Lucky Dog’s boarding aficionados hire sheep barbershop quartets to softly bleat lullabies, ensuring all pups snooze comfortably, either in a single room for the private stay or in a softly snoring dog pile.
Petimage Grooming Salon & Spa pampers canines and felines with services that rival human-oriented spas. The groomers use shampoos that employ natural and organic ingredients, which ensures pets come away clean and unworried about their carbon paw prints. Along with trims and fur-styling services, the spa also offers blueberry facials.
Some customers choose from a colorful array of cookies, donuts, and other delectables on a tiered and crystal-encrusted dessert tray, while others relax and enjoy floor-to-ceiling murals of a picturesque countryside in the indoor dog park. None of them, however, happen to be human—such is the focus on luxury at Royal Pets Market & Resort, where boarding, grooming, training, and adoption services are overseen by an experienced staff. After pampering treatments such as aromatherapy baths or moisture-therapy wraps, dogs and cats can be outfitted from the wide selection of collars, foods, toys, and apparel in the expansive store.
Mark and Sheryl McEachern, owners of the Woof Gang Bakery location in Lutz, opened their shop in hopes it would become a place where pet owners enjoy visiting with their furry friends. "We plan on knowing all the neighborhood dogs by name," Mark says. Bubblegum-pink walls and a chandelier hanging from the ceiling give the shop the feel of a clothing boutique, though displayed trays of dog biscuits and homemade canine cakes leave no doubt as to the store's intended clientele. Helping pet owners provide holistic food for their animals is a priority at the shop, with plentiful dog- and cat-food choices in natural and grain-free varieties. The McEacherns also stock their shelves with chew toys and accessories, perfect for doggy birthday gifts or house-training recognition ceremonies.
Courteous Canine's founder Angelica Steinker literally wrote the book on dog training. Actually, she's written two books on the subject, in addition to articles published in professional veterinary journals. So it's no surprise that she and her staff are aces at caring for their canine charges.
Pups entering Courteous Canine's doggie daycare program must first undergo a thorough screening process before they're carefully matched to a playgroup of no more than four other dogs. Knowing that dogs need balance, a typical schedule includes time for play, individual attention, and nap time, as well as an opportunity to work on the New York Times crossword puzzle. Overnight guests rest safely under the watchful eye of 24/7 supervision by staff members who are pet CPR-certified. And because the staff boasts extensive training and experience, pet parents can join their shaggy brood for group or private training classes, whether they're looking to correct behavioral issues or to get dogs up to speed for agility competitions.