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.
It's hard to make room for nearly 8,000 wagging tails, 16,000 wandering eyes, and 32,000 batting paws, but Foothills Animal Shelter always finds a way. Due to its open-admissions policy—which means that no animal is turned away—the shelter welcomes roughly 8,000 homeless animals per year, treating them to housing and the attention of its professionals and volunteers. Once inside, the animals are given sanctuary, shots, and the chance to steal the hearts of potential adopters with their puppy-dog eyes.
But the caretakers at Foothills Animal Shelter don't just wait for needy pets to find them. They also perform such preventive measures as neutering, spaying, licensing, and vaccinations in order to ensure that pets with homes remain healthy and out of harm's way. This motive also drives the shelter's microchip services, which provide electronic identification should pets become lost, and training that teaches animals to follow commands and avoid white outfits after Labor Day.
Society plies patrons with craft beers from local breweries and local whiskey, as well as satisfying pub eats, including gluten-free options. Diners pair their plates of barbecue pulled pork, burgers on brioche buns, and chorizo tacos with frosty glasses of draft IPAs and lagers or sips of potent whiskey, bourbon, and rye from the extensive list of Colorado spirits. To pass the time, visitors at Society shoot pool, play darts, or play video games the way they were intended to be enjoyed?projected on a 10-foot screen.
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.
At Knee Deep in Dawgs, canine companions get an antidote to the boredom and loneliness that sets in when owners are away. During the day, staffers let dogs roam through large indoor spaces filled with toys and at night, they curl up in cozy dog beds. To keep them looking their best, the facility's groomers bestow new, clean 'dos upon request.
Dogs can also learn proper etiquette—as well as a few new tricks—with help from the staff trainer. A professional with more than 30 years on the job, the former deputy sheriff and K-9 trainer for the Denver Police Department started his career by training military dogs. Not to leave any service unoffered, the well-rounded Knee Deep group also includes a photographer who creates memorable portraits of canines that can be framed or taken on a walk around the block.