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Being 4-legged is so overrated…

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Today we took a road-trip down to Carmel! For those of you unfamiliar with the area, Carmel is known for its breathtaking scenery, its rich artistic history and for being exceptionally dog friendly.  I decided we should capitalize on these things and go explore the famous little town for ourselves! I do believe one of Chloe’s tripawd family members Max went to Carmel some time ago. I am pretty sure spirit Max tagged along with us 🙂

Here is Chloe all set and ready for our road trip! Since it is about an hour drive south, I followed my handy dandy road trip tips! She had a comfy, roomy back seat area (travel bed), the window rolled down and tunes for the trip! I made sure to capitalize on the other Tripawd road trip suggestions like having her Ruff Wear Harness, extra water, and a collapsable dog bowl.
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First Chloe and I went to Carmel beach! I am sure you are wondering why we went to another beach when we live by one, but all I have to say is why NOT?!?! I am a marine biology graduate currently in grad school for the same and I can’t get enough of it! Chloe had a blast once again meeting other dogs, roaming free to sniff all the cool smells and getting a work out in the sand.
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Chloe trying to meet and keep up with the other dogs

Then to gather a quick drink, we went to a local outdoor mall that allowed dogs!! They had a fountain in the center called the “Fountain of Woof” specifically for dogs to take a long and cool drink!!! It was here that we got second and third looks, people muttering under their breath how she only had three legs and how sweet she looked. I met a woman who owns her own dog food company in New Zealand and she offered to send Chloe some free samples! She took to Chloe immediately saying that she had a beautiful name for such a beautiful dog.

Fountain of Woof

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After we had left the mall, an elderly man walking with his wife walked up to me and said, “My son-in-law is a vet. We always like to say that every vet should have a one-eyed cat and a three legged dog!” They then told me how healthy Chloe looked and how remarkable it was that she was only 7 weeks post op. It really is interesting how people are more inclined to strike up a conversation with an ice breaker like a three legged dog! We had just crossed a street when lo and behold, we saw a dog shop! Of course we altered our course and wandered down to check the place out. It was a dog’s DREAM! Dog treats of all kinds, bones, cookies, rawhides, nylabones, harnesses, collars, clothes, toys etc… We looked around and before I knew it, Chloe was trying to scarf down a dog treat out of a bin on the floor… I decided the right thing to do would be to buy it, so I grabbed a paper bag for the bulk items, placed the dog slobbered thing inside and looked for something else to buy. She then was trying to go after something packaged, so I decided to buy that too. At first I thought it was so dumb to have all these open containers of dog treats all over the place, but I guess if your dog did what Chloe did, you would feel inclined to buy it. Sneaky, sneaky!!
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It wasn’t until we stopped at a local strip mall with curving, winding, pathways equipped with their own charming “street” names that led to a multitude of small shops did we come upon a perfect moment. What brought us here was my ravenous hunger since I forgot to bring a snack for myself!. I grabbed a coffee, pastry and headed off to find a shady spot. We explored the winding sidewalks lined with foliage and dotted with rockwall seating until I found a perfect, shadowed bench. I set up her travel bed, filled her travel bowl with water and proceeded to read to pass the time. It wasn’t long after that a small cockerspaniel named Peanut decided to walk himself, leash and all, out of a local owner’s store to come say hi to Chloe. The owner came by a minute later and jokingly reprimanded him for going on his own walk. I started to read again, but I looked at Chloe sitting with her soft brown eyes smelling the end-of-summer California air sea breeze and I felt the charm of Carmel come to life. We had been searching for this by going to the beach, taking a stroll downtown and visiting a posh mall, but little did we know that we would find it in an unlikely place. I soon forgot my book and decided to watch the people pass us by, gradually locking up their small shops, the parking lot growing more empty and the shadows dancing across the pavement. I wished I could remain transfixed in that moment, enjoying the company of my dog, a warm coffee and a good book. Needless to say this feeling of peace remained long after we left and I know someday we will go back.
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Author John Steinbeck wrote in his famous book, Cannery Row: “Carmel by the sea, Monterey by the smell, and Pacific Grove by God.” You now know why Carmel got its name, so stay tuned for more Chloe road trips in the future to find out why those neighboring towns got their names!! (Hint hint: this is most likely a trilogy of road trips)


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