What would an ideal “pet-friendly community” offer to residents and visitors? How does your community measure up? Are there ways to encourage improvements?

Protective Laws

  • State laws with felony provisions for animal neglect and abuse
  • Ordinances require pet dogs and cats to be spayed or neutered
  • Ordinances require dog and cat breeders to be licensed
  • Ordinances set minimum shelter, shade, collar/chain/kennel characteristics, food, water, and health standards for yard dogs

Health and Welfare

  • Veterinary clinic serving large and small animals located within 10 miles
  • Humane society or animal shelter located within 25 miles
  • Wildlife sanctuary located within 100 miles
  • Animal control officer is employed
  • Schools and churches host speakers who educate on pet care and training

Pet-centric Businesses 

  • Motel or hotel that allows guests to lodge with dogs and cats (a modest deposit is fine)
  • Pet stores
  • Boarding and/or dog daycare services
  • Dog training services
  • Pet grooming services
  • Pet sitter services
  • Dog walking services

Activities with Pets

  • A park that allows dogs or cats on leashes
  • Community events focused on pets
  • Clubs focused on retrieving, flyball, disc dog (frisbee), agility, obedience, and other sports