Four years ago today we found a goofy, lovable German Shepherd hiding behind a dumpster at our house in center city Philadelphia. The vet told us he was about a year old, so we also celebrate this day as his birthday. This sweet dog has changed our lives forever – truly rescuing us from the unfulfilling life path we’d gone down. To honor Buster on his birthday, I want to share his story. Life wouldn’t be the same without you, buddy … and I mean that literally!
Once upon a time, two accountants took their persnickety (yet adorable) dog, “Ty” for his morning walk around Philadelphia.
Upon their return home, a man ran up to warn the couple to watch out for the BIG, BLACK dog he’d just seen near their house.
After a fruitless search for the dog’s owner, the couple decided to make the dog part of their family and named him “Buster.” It wasn’t long before the couple was preparing to take Ty and Buster on a family vacation.
But the couple didn’t realize was how difficult it was to find fun places where Ty and Buster could go with them. They spent hours in front of the computer and on the phone just to find dog friendly hotels … where were they going to play or eat? That’s when the idea hit them … they could build a website that would make pet travel easy for everyone!
They collected information on hotels and campgrounds – including detailed pet policies. They found pet friendly restaurants, and wineries, and dog parks, and beaches … where pets could romp with their people. They even tracked down veterinarians, pet supply stores, doggy day care, and pet sitters in case people needed them when they were away from home. And in 2009, they launched GoPetFriendly.com.
Because the couple loved to take long driving vacations, in 2010 they added a unique feature in their website – a tool to quickly and easily plan pet friendly road trips!
One day, the husband said to his wife, “You can’t tell people how easy it is to travel with their pets if you’re just sitting in an office. You’re going to have to get out and walk the walk!” It was the last time he gave her advice without thinking through the consequences … because the wife sold their house and bought them a Winnebago.
Now the couple travels the country with Ty and Buster, looking for more pet friendly places to include on the website. They’ve traveled more than 40,000 miles in their RV and have no desire to “settle down” anytime soon.
Many, many people travel along vicariously on their blog, Take Paws, which has become an encyclopedia of travel advice and pet friendly destination guides. The GoPetFriendly.com team is committed to helping you make the very most of the time you spend with your pets – whether it’s a trip around the block or across the country.
Happy birthday, Buster! We’re so grateful you found us and we’re looking forward to many more happy years together. Woof!
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