Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Dogs Are Classic New York...

NYC Real Estate Goddess entertained some family from out west over the last couple weeks. It's always fun to have the perspective of non-New Yorkers. Our own 1 bedroom apartment is about 750 square feet, so our cousins had some space to stretch out. I didn't take them "sight-seeing" - my version of showing them the quintessential tiny New York - particularly Manhattan - apartments that we're so famous for.

One thing they did notice was how many New Yorkers had dogs. Big dogs, little dogs, all kind of dogs. As mountain-dwellers with their own dogs, they wondered how we New Yorkers manage to care for their dogs. Answer: an elaborate system of housebreaking, strict scheduled walks, alternative transportation and/or totable dogs, and additional support. We love our canine friends. They brighten up our day. We bring them with us on the subway in approved (and not-so-approved) carriers. We have dog walkers shuttling them while we're at work so their not too uncomfortable. And of course, wee-wee pads have helped immensely. 

New York is such a dog town that the Westminster Kennel Club holds its annual dog show in New York's Madison Square Garden every year. This year - the 136th annual dog show, was where NYC Real Estate Goddess went to get her fix. Usually we just content ourselves with standing outside the Garden and peering at the specimens being walked. But not this year - we had to be in the thick of it. And so we were:

Scottish Terrier breed competition at 136th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show

Here you see my favorite breed being judged - the Scottish Terriers. Truly these are a dog after my own heart. They are described on the Scottish Terrier Club of America as "aloof" and the breed introduction in the group competition says they feel "openly superior to their owners". But they are great little creatures - equal parts smart and cute, and very loyal. I was able to figure out which one would be named the winner (it's #6 - in the center of the photo). But I loved them all!

Backstage at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show is the best place to be - it's very hectic and crowded, especially as there was a lot of renovation going on at Madison Square Garden. They were shoehorning the benching areas everywhere they could, including behind the judging areas in the theater, and grooming was happening up in the wings!

Norwich Terriers in the Wings at the 136th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show   

Here you see several of the Norwich (pronounced "NOR-itch") terriers getting ready for their show. They are shoehorned up into the wings of the theater stage left - luckily they are small and resilient, as are their groomers!

Backstage in the arena, the big dogs were on display. These guys have tons of personality and their owners give them lots of love.

Great Pyrenees Playing on the Bench at the  136th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show   

I think this is a Great Pyrenees Mountain Dog - not sure as I couldn't get close to that bench, but it sure looks like one to me. 

I guess I'm a sucker for large dogs. I mean, they were so cute!  

Mastiff backstage at 136th Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show
I mean, how do you resist this beautiful (and friendly) mastiff face?

Or this?

A Young Girl Plays With a Leonberger entry at the 136th Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

There were some great creatures in general. As a close second to my beloved Scottie, I really liked the Sky Terrier in the Terrier Group.
A Sky Terrier chills out in the benching area at the 136th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

The ears are the pointy things behind the pigtails.

There's no end to the gorgeous dogs, and most of the animals you see at home are just as wonderful. Yes, we New Yorkers love our dogs and Westminster is right at home among us (even more so when they move the preliminary judging and benching to Piers 92-94 in 2013, thus alleviating some of the incredible crowding we experienced this year and allowing more dogs to enter!). 

New Yorkers love their dogs so much, in fact, that it's known pet owners will pay a premium in rent to have their beloved friends with them. In fact, an apartment my firm listed recently did not rent - in part, we believe, because all cat and dog owners were turned away.  So, landlords, food for thought: better rents to let these adorable creatures keep their masters company.

Do you have a story about how you successfully deal with pet owner tenants? Let me know!

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