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Cruisin' Canines

COVID-19 Response

Hello Cruisin’ Canines clients, friends, and family, In light of the current situation with the Coronavirus/COVID-19 here in Chicago, we wanted to check in with you and let you know what we are doing in response. At this time, there is no plan to suspend service. As always, we’re very flexible with scheduling and understand if you need to cancel services in the meantime as a precaution or while you’re working from home. However, as it stands, it seems many people are still going to work as usual, and we plan to still be there for your pups, be it walks, daycare, or boarding. Safety is and always has been our top priority. Each of our walkers have been instructed to wash hands between every visit, use hand sanitizer if they have it, and some are opting to disinfect leashes and doorknobs at each visit as well or use their own leash when possible. All are asked to avoid unnecessary exposure to large groups, closely monitor their own health, and certainly stay home if they’re sick. In order to keep them all safe as well, please cancel services and inform us if you’re home due to a potential association with someone confirmed positive for the virus or if you’re under the weather yourself. As a small family-owned business, we will do everything we can to assist and financially support our dog walkers. With schedules being lighter, this may affect walker-retention long-term. If you’re currently working from home, but have already budgeted your walking services for the month, please consider sending an additional tip along for your walker instead. Any over-payments or tips will be forwarded 100% to your assigned dog walker.   With our boarding numbers low, we are currently able to accommodate a few more daycare pups as well. We are a small home-office space, low foot-traffic and closed off to the general public. While we’re positive any pup would be happy to have their human working from home for a time, we also it’s not always practical or conducive to productivity. If your pup is social and getting a little stir-crazy inside, let us know, we’d be happy to provide details and see if they’re a good fit here! We will continue to refer to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization and other public health agencies to determine the safest course of action for everyone. We will stay in communication as the situation evolves, and will certainly alert everyone if we do need to suspend services.   For those questions about your pup’s safety, to date, there is no evidence that companion animals or pets can spread COVID-19. For the latest information about coronavirus and pets, we encourage you to visit the links below: We understand the concern and uncertainty you may be experiencing surrounding the coronavirus and are committed to being responsive to the needs of both you and your pup. Thank you for being a part of our Cruisin’ Canines family, it means the world to us. Sincerely,Pam and Paul Gordon, Cruisin’ Canines

Weekly Walker, ed. 5.22

As just part of our dog walkers’ continuing education, a newsletter is emailed out most weeks with any important information about the upcoming week, weather and safety advisories, as well as tips, tricks, and other useful or fun information about the dogs we care for daily. Here are some of the things we like to share! Happy Monday! Hope you had an awesome weekend. Quick reminder first, it’s still summer and still hot out! Ensure the dogs you are walking have your complete attention and call us right away with any concerns. Better to be safe than over do it and risk paw burns, heat stroke, or worse. Extra reading up this week, some new, some old, but all worth reading. Please pay particular attention to the first article about “foxtail” grasses as one of our own pup-clients recently had a scary encounter with some along the river walking trail. Luckily his humans saw him ingest it, and after a visit to the ER Vet is doing okay. We helped a lost dog Friday morning too make it to CACC safely in hopes of his family finding him there, Hopefully he’s made it home by the time you read this, but if not, please share his picture to help get him home! Beware of Foxtail Grass This Summer Tis the season for these deadly grass seeds to dig into your dog.“Foxtail” is a generic term that’s often applied to several species of wild grasses, but is specifically associated with a type of wild barley (Hordeum jubatum). As the plant begins to dry out in the summer months, the seed heads, also known as awns, become brittle and fall off the plant. As they continue to dry, the long foxtail breaks into smaller and smaller segments, with each sharp-pointed awn sporting a few long bristles. Viewed under a magnifying glass, each bristle is covered with an infinite number of microscopic barbs. If an animal brushes by the dry plant (or steps on it, sniffs it, rolls on it, lies on it, ad nauseum), the microscopic barbs catch on its fur. Sometimes the awn falls from the animal’s fur on its own. However, if the awn doesn’t fall out, is ingested, or it hooks into another area of the animal, that’s when the trouble starts. Read on in Whole Dog Journal or do a quick Google Image search to see just some of the potential consequences. Found Dog Do you recognize him?Sweet male Samoyed found very early Friday morning in Roscoe Village, please share to find his family and help get him home! Intact male, found with collar and leash but no tags and no microchip. He was taken to Chicago Animal Care and Control, ID#A202948. Ancient Dogs of the Americas… Were Wiped Out by European ColonizationThe first dogs came to the Americas more than 10,000 years ago, across the Bering land bridge that connected North America and Asia. Afterward, the dogs dispersed across the Americas, where they lived for 9,000 years, isolated from the world. But those dogs aren’t the dogs you’ll pet today.So what happened to them? Read more at Live Science From National Geographic:  Just like human babies, dogs have non-verbal ways of getting what they want. While studying canine behavior, researchers recently identified 19 referential gestures. A referential gesture is one that brings the owner’s attention to a specific object or event.While the short video here is pretty basic, that actual study published in the journal Animal Cognition is rather interesting. Coolest Dogs of 2019 here to show you how to do it.

Our JULY Dog of the Month is

Brie! Breed(s): Australian Shepherd / Cattle Dog Mix Age/Birthday: Adoption Day 6/30/2017, Approx 3 years old. Adopted from Paws 🙂 Where I Live: Lincoln Park, Chicago, IL Joys in Life: Getting cheese as treats, stopping for puppuccinos, cuddling and playing with her stuffed wubba toy. She loves to greet people and other dogs on walks, will often sit and wait to be pet or to say hi. Going to her Grandma’s house to be spoiled with chicken for dinner. Stopping to smell the flowers and grass after a fresh rain storm. Loves to wake up her owners so she can play and get belly rubs. Favorite Food/Treat:  Per her name sake she has a soft spot for cheese. Adores any type of bone, sometimes can be found with her chin resting on her bone fast asleep.  Favorite Toy/Activity:  Her wubba, currently a frog she wants to play catch or tug of war with. Visiting her other dog friends (Sooki, Rosie and Stewie) for play-dates. Cuddling in her papasan chair for a nap. Find her on Instagram too! @cheesybriedog

5 Dog-Friendly Summer Spots in Chicago

There are plenty of rules and regulations to abide by if you’re a dog owner in Chicagoland. But as long as you look out for the regulations that apply when you decide to take your dog for a walk, you’re sure not to run into any problems. If you live on a busy schedule and you want to walk your furry friend while having lunch or grabbing drinks with a friend at the same time, you might encounter some difficulties. Not all places in Chicago allow you to bring pets but don’t worry – there are plenty that do. Here are our favorite dog-friendly places in Chicago: Murphy’s Bleachers Murphy’s Bleachers is located in the heart of Wrigleyville. Generally speaking, this area is not overly pet-friendly, but there are quite a few bars that allow pets, and Murphy’s Bleachers is one of them. The bar has been around since 1891, and it’s located in a perfect spot to catch the game while also taking your dog for a walk. Whether you’re looking for a quick beer or Bingo Night, we’re sure that you will enjoy this place. Feel free to bring a few dog treats with you! DryHop Brewers There is nothing like quenching your thirst with a delicious and refreshing craft Chicago beer! And is there a better place to do it than surrounded by beer enthusiasts? On top of that, your pet is as welcome as you are. We’re talking about DryHop Brewers located in Lakeview East. Whether you want to enjoy a heavy IPA or an easy citrusy ale, DryHop Brewers is the place to add to your dog walking route. 1340 Beer Wine Spirits Formerly known as Madison Vine Wines, 1340 is also one of the friendliest places for dogs in Chicago. It is a great place for dog lovers craving a good wine selection. If you want to taste the wines from around the world or go out on a nice first date, there is no need to leave your pet behind. At 1340 Beer Wine Spirits, you can relax with your pet right beside you. Montrose Dog Beach Throughout spring and summer, Montrose Beach is one of the most crowded areas in Chicago. Wouldn’t a playdate in the sand with dozens of other dogs be an awesome experience for your furry pal? You could also meet other dog lovers and make lifelong friendships. Fortunately, there is a huge dog-friendly area of Montrose Beach where all dogs can take a swim or wrestle in the sand. Be ready to get wet, as your dog will certainly see to it! White Sox Games It would be nice to be able to take your dog to a baseball game, wouldn’t it? Fortunately, Chicago’s White Sox have included regular dog days into their schedule. Bear in mind that you have to get a special ticket if you want to watch a game with your pup. This year’s dog days are April 29 and September 10. People at White Sox have really gone out of their way to make the Dog Days comfortable for the pet visitors. Throughout the day, your pet will have access to comfort stations that are installed in the Outfield concourse. Chicago is truly one of the friendliest cities for dogs in the country. Since we know how busy your schedule can get, you should always have a backup in case you can’t take your dog for a walk. Chicago’s friendliest dog walkers will provide you with peace of mind when you need to leave your pet alone for a day, or an entire vacation for that matter. Find your ideal dog walker today with Cruisin’ Canines!

Our JUNE Dog of the Month is

Rae! Breed(s): Black Lab Age/Birthday: A little over 2 – my birthday is April 17th Where I Live: Logan Square Joys in Life: Snuggling in bed with mom, hanging in dog-friendly bars and swimming in Lake Michigan Favorite Food/Treat: Cheez-Its are my favorite treat 😎 Favorite Toy/Activity: Moo-Moo. It’s a cow stuffed animal that I’ve had since I was a pup! Fun facts: I have an obnoxiously large tongue and love giving random humans (and other dogs) kisses at the dog park Cruisin’ Dog Walker: Athena Dog Walking Buddies: Parker and Keva, but I love everyone!

Our MAY Dog of the Month is

Ted! Breed/s: 75% to 100% Akita Age/Birthday: Sept 5, 2014. He came to us via Anti Cruelty Society May 1, 2016 Where I Live: In beautiful Avondale Joys in Life: Running on the beach. Favorite Food/Treat: Snacking on cheese and homemade soup…The soup part is not true! Favorite Toy/Activity: His favorite toy is his squeaky “Pink Dog.” A favorite activity is visiting neighborhood yards with pet chickens. Celebrity Look-alike: The lone ranger. Fun facts: When he wants food or a treat, he takes a toy to the food/treat and drops it, with gusto! Cruisin’ Dog Walker: Danielle. Ted watches out the windows for Danielle and he barks very loudly when she approaches. He rarely barks, otherwise.

Finding a Reliable Dog Walker

Regardless of how big of a backyard you have, for your dog to stay healthy and happy, they need regular exercise and daily walks. With busy work schedules and daily responsibilities, most of us cannot meet this need on a daily basis, unfortunately. That’s why most of us turn to professional dog walkers. They make our lives so much easier, and our pooches so much happier, but it can be difficult choosing the right one for you and for your best friend. Let’s see what you can do to make this choice easier for yourself. Ask for Recommendations You might see a lot of ads by dog walkers around your local dog park, but you can’t really know how reliable they are. So, it’s always best to check with other owners. You’re not the first person to need dog walking services and asking around about the most reputable walkers is always going to be helpful. You’ll usually get a lot of information, and people will most likely be more than happy to share their own experiences with specific dog walkers. Your veterinarian might have some inside information as well, so don’t be shy to ask around. Do Your Research If all else fails, you can always turn to the internet. Check online reviews and read up on other owners’ experiences. Take this information with a grain of salt, however. New dog walkers might have amazing reviews online, but that could be because it takes time for people to have subpar experiences and share them online. On the other hand, amazing dog walkers with years of experience and an army of happy clients behind them might still have some negative reviews. Schedule a Visit Once you’ve gathered some information and have a few phone numbers, schedule a visit. This will give you an opportunity to meet your potential dog walker and form an opinion for yourself. The dog walker will spend a lot of time with your pooch, so observe the interaction between them. Most dogs are shy when they meet new people but look at the walker’s reaction. You want an assertive, yet friendly person. You might also want to join them on their first walk. You’ll see how responsive they are to your dog, and how they handle him or her. A Reliable Dog Walker A reliable dog walker will have enough experience to provide your dog with the best care, and they’ll be licensed and insured. Companies like Cruisin’ Canines give you a clear insight into their business, and you have all the information necessary about their dog walkers, pricing, and more. You can check their reviews, choose the walker that you like the most, and since they’re insured, you can rest easy knowing your pooch is in good hands. Dogs are more than just pets, they’re our family members, and you want to give them the best care possible. Leaving them with companies like Cruisin’ Canines will ensure that your best friend is well taken care of. Find your perfect dog walker with Cruisin’ Canines today!

5 Tips for Spring Dog Walking

Spring is officially here, but winter didn’t get the memo yet. As a result, you can still be surprised by a sudden rainfall or get ankle-deep in mud. The temperatures in Chicago can drop without any warning throughout March and April, and rain can come at any moment so don’t get excited too soon. This can be a nuisance for pet owners across the city, mostly because wet weather and misbehaved dogs don’t go well together. Potential health risks are an even greater cause for concern, as your furry friend can easily catch a cold while walking home all wet from the rain. But you can prevent all this with the following five tips for spring dog walking: Keep Your Dog Warm & Cozy We’ve mentioned previously how sudden rainfall can be dangerous for your dog’s health, especially in combination with low temperatures. If you’re a proud owner of a fashionable pooch who enjoys strutting around in little jackets and boots, then you can skip to the next tip. If not, you should at least have a dog raincoat that you can wrap your pup in as soon as you notice the first rain cloud. You should still insist on boots, though, since having a raincoat alone cannot protect your dog from getting wet from melting snow and ice. Set Up a Quick Cleaning Station You’ll need a solid mat, a dog towel, and a damp cloth. Use them to set up a quick cleaning station at the entrance of your house before you leave for a walk. That way, you’ll have everything you need to clean your dog’s dirty paws at hand and you won’t have to scrub the mud off the porch steps every time you return from a walk. Avoid Unfamiliar Walking Spots Though spring is a great time to start exploring the city, the melting snow can leave streets and parks brimming with trash. For dogs, few things are more exciting than piled up garbage and stale food. Spring lawns are then a smorgasbord of unauthorized snacks. Because of this and also because of all the potentially harmful objects that can hurt your dog’s paws, it may be best to postpone spring excursions for a couple of weeks until the snow is gone, and the trash is cleaned up. Stick around your block, where you know what to expect. Have Water & Treats on You For the same reason, but also because street puddles can be full of mud and salt from the melting snow, don’t forget to bring fresh water and some treats for the walk. When it comes to avoiding risky distractions, there isn’t a more effective trick than this one. Curb Your Dog’s Hunting Instinct The treat bag may fail to do the trick if your dog picks up a squirrel smell, though. Spring is a hunting season even for domesticated animals, as prey drive can never be fully eliminated. This is another reason why you should avoid unfamiliar walking spots. Have fun but stay alert! Find the best and most prepared dog walkers with Cruisin’ Canines today!

4 Must-Visit Chicago Spring Dog Walking Spots

After a long and harsh winter, the weather is finally almost perfect for catching a few sunrays with your best friend. Dogs enjoy the endless splendor of springtime as much as humans do, but finding a nice place to kick back and relax in sun-kissed Chicago can be a problem. If you and your pooch are both bored with the same old walking route, these amazing Chicago spots will help you keep it fresh and interesting. Here are our top 4 picks for the best spring dog walking spots: 1. Montrose Beach Montrose Beach is open to the public every day from sunrise to sunset, in accordance with Chicago’s own Park District nine-to-nine schedule. This makes it perfect for just about any kind of a whole-day outdoor adventure you’d want to share with your dog. And need we mention… Montrose Beach is the city’s first off-leash beach zone! This exciting news means that there’ll be plenty of friendly faces and wet snouts for both of you to spend your day with. Other dog owners will keep you company while your pooch is busy hanging out in the sand and splashing in the water. 2. Navy Pier An amazing place for humans and dogs alike, Chicago’s Navy Pier provides ample opportunities for a spring excursion down to the Lake Michigan. This is especially true for the south dock, which provides additional walking space and is always packed with canine lovers. The best thing about this beloved Chicago walking spot is that it boasts a myriad of dog-friendly restaurants and shops, in addition to the amazing view of the city skyline. You don’t even have to bring any snacks – there’s something for every dog’s taste. 3. Belmont Harbor Dog Beach Belmont Harbor Dog Beach is an off-leash walking zone as well, though it’s significantly smaller than Montrose Beach. But just like the smallest pups are traditionally the cutest, this beach is an adorable little playground for dogs of all breeds, shapes, and sizes. If your pup likes to get silly with his friends, then this is the place. On a typical Saturday morning, you’ll find at least ten to fifteen dogs at Belmont Harbor Dog Beach, so make sure to pick your timing. Bring your dog’s towel and some spare clothes as well, as it is usually a splash fest. You won’t be needing any toys, that’s for sure. 4. Magnificent Mile On the other side of the spectrum is the Magnificent Mile, a posh promenade for well-behaved and fashion-forward dogs. Known for high-end window shopping, this luxury Chicago district is brimming with Miniature Bull Terriers, Italian Grayhounds, and frisky Maltipoos. You won’t be able to browse all the stores, though. The Magnificent Mile is still a picturesque walking spot for dog owners who want to spend an afternoon strutting down the city’s busiest street. If you don’t care for crowded places, we recommend taking your furry buddy someplace else, as the Magnificent Mile attracts locals and tourists alike. Have a nice walk and a frolicking afternoon! Find an adventurous spring dog walker with Cruisin’ Canines today!

Our APRIL Dog of the Month is

Milly! Breed/s: Mix! Age/Birthday: 9 years old. November 1, 2009 Where I Live: Roscoe Village Joys in Life: Being outside. She loves camping, hiking, fishing, and being by the lake. She has learned what it looks like to land a fish and will try to get to the fish before you reel it in. (See photo below!) Favorite Food/Treat: Anything that smells like salmon. It’s hard to eat sushi or cook salmon at the house without her going nuts. Favorite Toy/Activity: Milly has several toys that she spreads equal love to. She likes showing visitors her toys and then whipping them around her head. Cruisin’ Dog Walker: Katie Dog Walking Buddies: Milly loves walking with Franklin, but she’s a pal to anyone! Fun Facts: Milly has lived in 5 states and has hiked two 14ers in Colorado. Celebrity Look Alike: Dobby from Harry Potter  

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