Having situated itself along the banks of Plum Creek more than 40 years ago, Stockton's Plum Creek Stables still makes good use of its prime spot next to Chatfield State Park by providing horseback jaunts through the park wilderness via its exclusive entrance. Trail rides allow riders to witness such wildlife as red-tailed hawks, coyotes, and possibly bear mingling among the park's trees and meadows. Novice riders may benefit from the stable’s lessons, which help them gain comfort around horses through participation in exciting activities as well as basic care such as grooming, saddling, and complimenting horses’ hair.
The privately owned Overland Animal Hospital & Pet Resort spans 17,000 square feet of facilities that more resemble a boutique pet hotel than an animal clinic. Claiming accreditation from the American Animal Hospital Association, Overland’s general practice veterinarians see to pet health with services that range from vaccinations to pet hospitalization. The boarding facilities cater to both canines and felines even during the holidays, comforting lodgers with heating, air conditioning, and unlimited access to the outdoors for dogs. Onsite webcams similarly comfort owners, letting them check in on their furry friends.
Dogs can also come to daycare, where they get to romp with similarly sized pooches during hours of outdoor play. Individual daycare programs are available for pups who prefer working on their memoirs to frolicking with other dogs. Further services include professional dog training and grooming, during which staff only use hypoallergenic products.
With the exception of the Englewood location, all City Bark locations provide self-wash tubs for expedient DIY doggie dunking (about $10 for 30 minutes without shampoo, $11.50 with shampoo; rates vary slightly by location). These specially designed tubs ensure safe and easy dog baths, pleasant for person and pup alike. City Bark provides numerous accoutrements to make the slather sessions go swimmingly, including waterproof aprons, a variety of doggie shampoos, towels, and dryers for preventing post-bath shake-spray. After donning the apron, place your pal in a waist-high tub, specially designed for safe and simple bath time that beats crouching on the tiles of a home lavatory while your dog writhes and splashes, ruining freshly acquired lavender soap angels and terrifying the neighbors with plaintive howling.
Pet owners know that the best thing a doggie daycare can provide is peace of mind. At U Lucky Dog, they do more than promise that dogs will get lots of exercise and human interaction; they allow owners to check on their four-legged friends with live streaming video on their website, with cameras situated on all play areas in the 18,000-square foot facility. Because of this, 5280 magazine named U Lucky Dog its Editor's Choice for Best Doggie Daycare 2012.
Before admitting a pup to dog daycare, knowledgeable staffers evaluate its temperament to determine its best playmates. During the day, dogs frolic in indoor play areas as well as outdoor ones with elevated turf, obstacles to climb, and toy cats to plot coups against. The UVAIRx system purifies the air, extracting germs and other contaminants for a more sanitary space. Overnight guests enjoy kennel-free dog boarding with elevated beds and a schedule that includes play and nap time. Cats can also bunk down in their own exclusive area to plot counter-coups.
Founded in Oak Park, Illinois, in 1996 by pet owners who were sick of bothering neighbors to care for their furry charges when they were busy or away, Out-U-Go! keeps beloved animals happy when their owners are unavailable. Certified members of Pet Sitter International, Out-U-Go’s fully licensed and bonded pet professionals undergo a rigorous screening process, putting in time at the company's Dog Walk University to learn how to deal with willful pets, calmly handle emergencies, and internalize animals’ fear of vacuums. New customers start off with a free meet and greet, with sitters coming to the house to meet dogs, cats, and smaller critters, and discuss special needs and routines. Services range from daily walks to full-time housesitting and pet taxi rides to groomers, vets, and kennels.
Thanks to a dedicated, trained staff and convenient amenities such as live webcams, K-9 Castle earned a spot as a top-five finalist in the Denver A-List's Best Pet Sitting category three years in a row. Owners Michelle Romero and Rita Sandoval lead a loyal team, all of whom are trained in pet first aid and dog behavior, making them better able to keep animals safe and teach canines to use the correct fork at the dinner table. In addition to daytime and overnight care, the crew can train pups and treat them to such grooming services as teeth brushing, nail trimming, and baths with a blow-dry.