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Monday, July 10, 2017

Cities where dogs are treated better than many people

I suppose there must have been a time when the phrase “It’s a dog’s life” made immediate sense. Today, however, as a signifier of a life of difficulty, this phrase doesn’t convey as much suffering. Americans treat their dogs like… well, like themselves. We spend $23 billion on pet foods every year, much of that cash on gourmet varieties, including vegan and gluten-free (and just FYI, don’t do that, dogs are carnivores: They like and need meat, and if they could talk, they would tell you they could care less about gluten.) We spend $15 billion a year on medical care for our pooches. They accompany us to the grocery store, cafes, airports (JFK Airport in New York is set to open a terminal devoted to pets), even to work. Dog parks are proliferating in cities across the U.S. Doggie Couture is real.
And in case you are thinking, “decadent old America and its misplaced values,” it’s not just Americans. In Japan, when their canine pals are too old to frolic anymore, there are dog retirement homes. The truth is that dogs are royalty in much of the world.
Sure, there are dog parks and good vets and liberal leash laws in lots of cities. San Francisco, Las Vegas, Albuquerque, and Minneapolis have impressive numbers of all three, and they are great dog cities. But here is a list of some of the cities in the world that go a step beyond, making them among the very best places to live if you are literally living a dog’s life.

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