Seattle Pet Guide

Seattle’s Best Doggie Day Cares, Parks, Pet Sitters, and More

How to keep your fuzzy, furry friends happy on every occasion.

By Allison Williams Illustrations by Kiki Kita April 17, 2017 Published in the May 2017 issue of Seattle Met

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While You're At Work

Day Care

With three locations, 24-7 operating hours, and everything from obedience classes to ear washes, Downtown Dog Lounge is the closest thing Seattle has to a canine-care hub. An annual day-care pass runs about $6,500, but they’ll update your pup’s kennel cough shot, and webcams let owners obsessively check up on pets. 


After running dogsled teams in Alaska, Less Talk, More Walk trainer Dustin Schmidt has deep doggie insight about their pack proclivities and disregard for human chatter. (You keep asking, “Who’s a good boy?”—but does he ever answer?) Schmidt picks up client pooches for vigorous day care ($96 per week) that produces well-behaved pets. 

Remote Play

The Seattle-born Furbo ($249) does everything but pet your dog; from their cellphone at work, owners fire treats from the rotating camera that has two-way audio and night vision. Picture a nanny cam that mated with a gumball machine. Also works for cats, if they will tolerate a squawking robot that pelts them with food. 

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Over the Weekend

Dog Parks

Though the city is dotted with off-leash zones (head under the interstate in Eastlake for a real post-apocalyptic vibe at I-5 Colonnade Park), the region’s biggest and best are at massive Magnuson Park (8.6 acres), Marymoor Park (40 acres on an old farm), and Off-Leash Area Edmonds (a just-for-dogs beach on Puget Sound).

Play Space

Is Dogwood, Lake City’s indoor-outdoor dog-play park and bar ($12, memberships available), like a canine Chuck E. Cheese’s? Pretty much, with a Seattle Barkery treat bar, couches, stools overlooking the play area, a tennis ball vending machine, and booze. You can even bring your own food (dog or human). 

Cat Toys

Felines need much less entertainment than their canine counterparts. So might as well entertain yourself with the catnip-stuffed creatures made by Seattle’s Lara Doss at Cattywampus Cat Toys: They’re shaped like kraken, the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or the Northwest’s own Bigfoot. 

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While You're on Vacation

Pet Sitters

Based in Belltown, Rover is the Uber of dog walkers and pet sitters, with a website or app that quickly sorts available caregivers by location, price, availability, or even whether they have their own pets. They do background checks and gather reviews, and the app neatly packages pics (and poop reports) from the stay or walk. 

Prison Boarding

Many of Washington’s state prisons have dog training programs for inmates, but the women’s correction center in Gig Harbor actually offers boarding at the Prison Pet Partnership—just $23 per night. The big house also offers training sessions during a pet’s stay. And hey, what’s more secure than the clink? 

Cat Hotels

Though dogs usually go to kennels, Puget Sound cats have a bevy of fine accommodations to choose from: All My Kitties B&B in Leschi, with a garden-view “catio” ($28 per day) and Redmond’s Snuggles Inn that features private playroom time and fenced outdoor space ($34 per day).  

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In an Emergency

Medical Care

Because pets never plan their vomit marathons around business hours, Wallingford’s Emerald City Emergency Clinic has a veterinarian available 24 hours a day, plus a full surgical suite, CPR capabilities, an isolation ward, and a slew of in-house imaging machines. 

Pet Detective

The best man for a lost-cat job might actually be a dog. The staff at Three Retrievers Lost Pet Rescue all have specialties: pit bull–Rottweiler mix Komu tracks cats, poodle Fozzie sniffs out lost dogs, and human James Branson rents out humane traps, does the paperwork, and feeds the others. 

Pet Psychic

If all else fails with a missing, misbehaving, or just mysterious pet, there’s always telepathy. Local animal communicator Joan Ranquet claims to sense why a horse is nervous or what will stop a digging dog from his destruction. In 2013, she was credited with finding a missing Redmond horse named Gemma, who was stuck in a ravine. 

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