|Not Joey, but same breed.|
I'm sure they both like chicken wings.
This morning's New York Times featured an article on how air travel now has services dedicated to transporting pets. Perhaps I would have thought this a bit odd at one time, but now that I have Joey around, I have to consider when I can take him somewhere, or if I have to leave him with a reliable caretaker. These days we are lucky to have the little man going off to a place he feels is like a really fun summer camp or Walt Disney World for him.
|A French Bulldog puppy.|
|See Charley assume the|
traditional dog pose in this automobile.
Why are pets needing to travel so much? This is an interesting question that arises from reading how these pet guardians are so intent on having such services available. One big reason lies in the role played by pets in American life today: they are family members. Therefore, you wouldn't let your grandmother sit in cargo, would you? (N.B.: I am paraphrasing a bumper sticker I saw last week that asked, "You wouldn't tie your grandma in the yard, would you?") However, though we might have airline services available to transport pets, we would do well to consider how well some pets do with reliable, trusted caretakers closer to home, especially if it grants your pet a sense of comfort or, in Joey's case, a little vacation with someone he loves.
The article does refer to those bulldog owners who have decided to take the high road -- literally. Pet owners have driven their dogs around since the start of the automobile age, and we have some rather memorable titles about this topic: John Steinbeck, anyone? Charley was a poodle who drove across America with Steinbeck in 1960. From Sag Harbor, New York to Salinas Valley, California, Steinbeck and his faithful hound, Charley, logged nearly 10,000 miles. Bill Steigerwald recently revisited this epic journey for the New York Times, and debunks some of the rugged individual-plus-dog myth of this travel narrative.