“This week” is a bit of a fiction, I know, given that the oldest link in here is dated January 25, but a more accurate headline wouldn’t be nearly so catchy. The link is certainly attention-grabbing: Australia turns out to be darned pet-unfriendly in many ways, but the Sunshine Coast Daily reports that the Sunshine Coast Council (representing a large urban area north of Brisbane) recently decided to let local café owners choose whether to allow dogs to join diners in outdoor dining areas.
While we’re in Oz, I should tell you about an e-mail I got from a representative of TransferCar, “a car relocation company in Australia and New Zealand providing travellers with cost effective transportation while on vacation in exchange for driving car back to the destination of origin.” She is well aware that the travelers I’d be passing her info on to are dog owners (“I am always looking for dog-friendly ways to travel. We have two pawed-children.”). If you’re planning a road trip with your pup in Australia or New Zealand, and you’re flexible about timing and route, consider car re-lo as a possible transportation alternative: “The traveller has a low-to-no cost, reliable vehicle to use while on vacation without the out of pocket cost of paying for a rental car. In many cases, using TransferCar includes insurance, ferry charges, and the first tank of gas.” It sounds a little odd, but the on-line consensus seems to be that the company is respectable.
Speaking of abroad, I got an e-mail from the founder of We Welcome Dogs, who urged me to take a look at his site, “a comprehensive guide to dog friendly businesses in Scotland.” I’m all in favor of guides like these, and happy to report, too, that the company offers an iPhone and Android app. Kenzo the Hovawart wrote a useful post about what an appealing place Norway is for travelers with a reactive dog, not least because of the way Norwegians are urged to be responsible dog owners.
Heading south, Animal Café is hosting a four-part series from Sheron Long about her travels in France with Chula, her Sheltie (star of the e-book Dog Trots Globe: To Paris & Provence), and Gigi Griffis (now in Paris, but then in Italy) has written a “small dog’s guide to Perugia.” A British couple wrote about their campervan vacation in Spain with Daisy, their Westie (including helpful details about taking the ferry from Portsmouth to Santander with a dog). On this side of the pond, Pet360 hosted a guest post from Luxury Paw‘s Janine Franceschi with tips for a fun Canadian weekend in Toronto.
And that brings us to a big heap of delightfully miscellaneous links. On the helpful tips front, check out this very sensible post from GoPetFriendly about preparing for your pet sitter. While researching my answer to a question a reader sent, I came across this site about traveling abroad with a service dog. The Bark reports that Rhode Island has joined the list of jurisdictions that’s considering a ban on driving with a dog on your lap. Thanks to Petside.com for an article about the new public restrooms for dogs in Shenzhen, China. Take a look at The Constant Rambler‘s favorite dog travel gear from this year’s Global Pet Expo — as you may know from Dog Jaunt’s Facebook and Google+ pages, I find Kurgo’s new kibble carrier very appealing, and the car crates from 4Pets look amazing.
I got a message from JetCharters.com, a “worldwide air charter marketplace,” asking me to let you know that they understand the needs of pet owners (witness this post from their blog). You have to engage in the reservation process to get real prices, so I can’t give you a very good idea of the costs involved. The rates, however, for a fictional getaway to Sonoma at the beginning of April, round-trip from Seattle, ranged from $650/hr for a Cessna 303 Crusader seating 4 up to $7200/hr for a Global Express jet seating 14 (I elected not to complete the request form to receive my charter quote).
Also in the in-box: A message from the creators of Dogbook, an “application that’s essentially a combination of Facebook and Foursquare but for your furry companions” — which might well be a useful tool for travelers with pets (iPhone and iPad apps exist; an Android app is in progress). I could imagine arriving in, say, Chicago, and looking for nearby Cavaliers so Chloe could play with them, and I could grill their owners about local resources and pet-friendly things to do. Anyway, here’s a Mashable article about it, if you’re intrigued.
And this link comes last, because what could I possibly follow it up with? I have a horrified fascination with “sneaker wave” news stories, and was struck, reading this one, by the Coast Guard spokewoman’s comment that all of the deaths that had happened since November 2012 “involved people walking their dogs or attempting to save dogs being swept out to sea.” In each instance, “the pets survived. ‘Don’t go in after your dog, because dogs are typically better swimmers than people.'” The other point she makes, and it’s a crucial one, is that when you’re walking on a Northern California beach, keep your eyes on the water!