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Natural Awakenings Indianapolis

Furry Friends Being Treated More Like Family Around Indy

Jun 02, 2014 12:02PM ● By Lanette Er

Parents should not feel uncomfortable if they encounter a dog with the same name as their child. According to the Veterinary Pet Insurance Co., the nation’s largest pet insurance company, the most popular dog names of 2013, Bella and Max, are also among the top 100 most popular human baby names as ranked by This trend toward giving dogs human names is a testament to the familial bond that exists between owner and canine, so it’s no wonder that pet parents want to bring their dogs with them wherever they go as part of the family unit.

To meet this demand, more small shops, financial institutions, drycleaners and other Indy businesses have begun allowing dogs on their premises. Many of them provide community water bowls inside their doors and stock dog treats. Also, some restaurants invite families to have their dogs join them for meals on the patio. Waiters or waitresses will normally bring a water bowl to the table and, often times, will drop a few ice cubes in the water as a treat.

For dog owners who want to further strengthen the bond with their dog, Dog Scouts of America, as featured on page 24, is a national organization with a local troop right here in Indianapolis. Troop #177 conducts monthly meetings that usually take place the second Saturday of each month at 9:30 a.m. at Best Friends Pet Care, in Indianapolis. Organized activities, along with the opportunity to earn merit badges for their pooches take place on a regular basis. The troop recently participated in the annual Mutt Strut.

If once a month of play time with other furry friends is not enough—which of course it’s not for most pups—dog parks are sprinkled throughout the Greater Indianapolis Area. Clay Terrace Mall in Carmel is no longer just a place for people to enjoy. The shopping center recently opened the Tom Wood Subaru Dog Park, a 42,300-square-foot dog playground open during daylight hours seven days a week. The park, located on the grassy knoll behind Kona Grill and next to the St. Vincent Sports Performance Center, is equipped with seating for patrons, waste stations and play elements for dogs. All friendly dogs are welcome free of charge.

Close by in Fishers is the fouracre Pierson Bark Park. Visitors and their canine companions can purchase a day pass or a membership to take advantage of the parks many amenities, including a winding brick path that circles the entire park; a fountain aerated pond in which furry friends can splash around; a designated small dog area; and a bath station. The Lodge, a recently opened, bed and breakfast-style dog boarding facility, takes advantage of the on-site bark park facilities.

Several other dog parks located around the city include Broad Ripple Bark Park, Eagle Creek Bark Park, Paul Ruster Bark Park on the East Side, Indianapolis Humane Society Pet Park on the Northwest Side, and Waggin’ Tails Bark Park in Lawrence.

For more information on activities and monthly meet-ups with Dog Scouts of America Troop #177, visit Meetup. com/Indy-Dog-Scouts-Troop-177/ events/161284802/ or email Indy- [email protected] Best Friends Pet Care is located at 8224 Bash St., Indianapolis. For more information on the Tom Wood Subaru Dog Park, visit Pierson Bark Park and The Lodge, 11787 E 131st St., Fishers, 317-577- 2275, For guides to Indianapolis Municipal Bark Parks, visit Indy.Gov/Egov/City/ DPR/Pages/BarkPark0214-8063. aspx or Voices.Yahoo.Com/A-Guide- Indianapolis-Bark-Parks-Fun-Dogs- And-4906964.html?cat=7.
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