Why Miami is the Best Place to Live for Your Dog

With its sunny climate, ample outdoor dining, and many walkable neighborhoods, Miami is a paradise for dog lovers and their canine pals. There are dog-friendly shops, beaches and hotels, not to mention dog parks galore. In fact, it’s among the three best places to live with pets in the U.S., according to a 2017 Reward Expert study. Drew Limsky spoke with a few locals to hear their take on Miami’s dog-friendly scene in Elliman Magazine. Here’s what they had to say.

Dog Parks

Credit: Juan Algarin

“Miami is such a dog-friendly city,” says Shai Tertner, president and founder of Shiraz Events and owner of three dogs. “You can take them to Lincoln Road and sit outside, to the Standard Hotel, or to the beach.”

Tertner lives in Edgewater now, after having spent years in South Beach. Both neighborhoods are great for pet owners, he says, as is Haulover Beach. It might be known for its nudist sunbathers, but this stretch of sand just south of Sunny Isles Beach also boasts a pair of dog runs, one for small dogs and one for big guys. Finding a neighborhood with dog runs—and dog-friendly pedestrian areas—is key for anyone who wants to keep his canines strong and active, says Tertner.

Fellow dog owner and Miami Lakes resident Scott Glick, a creative director for a local publishing company, is equally pleased with the city’s animal-friendly attitude. He and his husband, Matias, a visual coordinator for Zara, adopted their bicolor German shepherd this year and named her Uma (as in Uma Thurman).

“German shepherds need to be rigorously worked out,” Glick says. To that end, Glick has found a slew of parks where Uma can stretch her legs. There’s South Beach’s South Pointe Park, Hobie Island Beach Park on Rickenbacker Causeway and Tropical Park’s Bark Park in Miami, with its tire jumps and ramps for teaching dogs tricks.

Doggy Day Care & Training

Credit: John Bouma/Applause Your Paws

For daycare and socialization, Tertner takes his dogs to D.O.G., a luxury dog hotel. “They come back exhausted from having so much fun,” Tertner says.

After doing a lot of research, Glick chose Applause Your Paws in Miami, a training and boarding facility, for Uma. “Applause Your Paws operates under a no fear or intimidation policy, so everything is either positive reinforcement or a diversion—a way of getting your dog’s attention so they can model the behavior you want,” says Glick.

Grooming & Traveling

Credit: Juan Algarin

Coconut Grove–based Cheryl Andrews found her 14-pound dog, Fuzzy, by accident on the street 15 years ago. “He was a fuzzy, matted mess. I opened the car door and said, ‘Hop in,’ and he did,” recalls Andrews, who owns her own eponymous public relations firm. For grooming and supplies, the pair head to The Dog from Ipanema in South Miami. “I bought Fuzzy a beautiful new red collar and winter coat there for his visits to my family in Virginia,” says Andrews.

That’s just one of Fuzzy’s travel destinations since becoming the adored pet of an owner who has Caribbean hotel clients and a second home in Nevis. Their journeys are made easier by Miami International Airport’s recent addition of three whimsically themed indoor dog parks where canines can relieve themselves. Andrews has also seen a major improvement in how dogs are treated by airport staff.

“I just hold Fuzzy when I walk through the scanner,” she says. “Lucky for him, he’s a great traveler. We both got lucky when we found each other.”

Thinking a move to Miami would be good for you and your dog? Search our pet-friendly Miami properties to find a home for you and Fido.


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