LA people tend of want to go everywhere with their dogs. Even some cat people take their kitties to the beach or out on a leash for a stroll or even a road-trip. We love our pets. We love them of all breeds, species, shapes and sizes and we love LA for loving them back. So what’s better than a guide to the best local places to bring our four-legged friends? Nothing, really!
It just so happens that the staff of Los Angeles Blade and its contributors are almost all pet parents, and so we decided it would be a great idea to feature a few of their creatures and give our readers advice on the best doggy outings LA has to offer.
Karen Ocamb, Los Angeles Blade News Editor:
We are a rescue family. I rescued Dee J and Pepper from difficult situations years ago and they rescue me everyday. When my PTSD AIDS grief gets triggered, Pepper lays her whole body over my chest while Dee J, typical boy, jumps her or looks for a chew toy to distract me. They are so proud and happy walking, Pepper prancing like a Cairn Terrier version of a Clydesdale show horse while Dee J dashes to investigate lord-knows-what. And they love each other. During one doggie day care visit, Dee J was frightened by an obnoxious bigger dog. He scurried to a corner and was quickly joined by butch mamma Pepper. When the big dog approached again, Pepper, who was clearly frightened, too, slowly crawled in front of Dee J to provide protection. It was one of the bravest and sweetest acts I’ve ever witnessed. I’m so grateful to have them in my life.
It goes without saying, if you want to go for a hike in LA with your besties and your fur baby, Runyon Canyon is the place to go. It’s required of every self-respecting Angeleno that you post a well-post selfie with the Hollywood and LA skyline in the background and showing off the city’s rugged nature. Paw-friendly trails and plenty of new friends to meet, it’s got it all.
Troy Masters, Los Angeles Blade Publisher:
My partner Arutro and I have been blessed for the past 17 years to be owned by Lilly. She really has owned us. From the time she was a baby she was curious about every move we made and eerily understood our words, both in Spanish and English. She sat the first time we said Siéntate and she has given hugs at request (both front paws on our shoulders and nudging her face against ours) since she was a puppy. She keeps us centered and preserves order, even as her daily routine has grown more complex with the anxiety of blindness and diabetes. She’s a beautiful creature. When her partner in crime died suddenly, she mourned Max with us and helped lift us out of it. And when we were finally ready to introduce Cody into our family, she was excited to take charge of that too. She wasn’t having it when Cody became famous after a grooming incident resulted in a WeHo grooming regulation change called Cody’s Law. We’ve been blessed.
It’s perhaps the place in Los Angeles where you are most likely to find a husband or a wife or just another dog lover. Just pick up some poo and strike up a conversation about how cute Fido (“what’s his name?”) is and you are more than halfway there. Some of WeHo’s top super model people go here as do many of the Beverly Hills A-list stars. It’s a no pretense place with lots of licks and love.
Beverly Sparks, Los Angeles Blade Business Development Manager:
Abby is a two year old Australian Shepherd Mix that I rescued a year ago. Her absolute favorite thing to do is take a romp in the grass. The higher the grass, the better. She hates water and peanut butter but she loves car rides. Her favorite place in the house is in the doorway with her head outside and the rest of her body inside. She is never happy when it’s time to come completely inside.
SEPULVEDA BASIN OFF-LEASH DOG PARK (17550 Victory Boulevard)
Part of the vast Sepulveda Basin is the off-leash dog park that’s constantly packed with some of the valley’s cutest pups. This is an excellent spot for canine meetups, and just enjoying some good old fashioned outdoor zoomie time with your best fluffy friend. The park even has agility courses for more active dogs.
Susan Hornik, Los Angeles Blade Arts Contributor
Speedy, Spaz and Spot are my heart and soul, three beautiful creatures who brought me back from the living dead, as I grieved the sudden loss of my parents, who died while we were on vacation together in Cancun, when a car hit us. To have three is a special number; my parents and I were a family of three too; we went everywhere together. The joy they have brought me is immeasurable. It’s no wonder god spelled backwards is dog…they are my healers, my inspiration and my magic.
Long Beach has many hidden treasures and surprisingly so, but for the dog owners of Los Angeles, Rosie’s Dog Beach is really the best fine-free, pet-friendly beach. It’s easy to get to once you fight your way to Long Beach
John Paul King, Los Angeles Blade Arts Contributor
Borat King-Caruso is a handsome male tricolor cat who enjoys sunbeam-bathing, bossing around his people, and galloping through the house at full speed for no apparent reason in the middle of the night. At 12, he’s starting to get up there in years, but like his human housemates he stays youthful and fit with plenty of exercise, a healthy diet and a kittenish attitude. He’s enjoyed a lifelong career of providing companionship, comfort, and ALMOST unconditional love to his humans, John and Mike, and they have no idea what they would do without him. He likes to help John write movie reviews, but his taste is a little fishy.
Silver Lake is a hybrid of a West Coast New York hybrid of East Village and San Francisco and for Angelenos it offers up one of the best places in LA to unleash your doggies inner beast. There are even a few people with their kitties here. You’ll know them. But seriously, if you are an LGBT community activist of a certain age or a new trans influencer or just a tatted wanna be, you will be right at home here with your bestie and you are likely going to know just about everyone.