'Yelp For Dogs' Launches With Guide to Pooch-Friendly Galleries and Bars

By Mathew Katz on May 9, 2013 9:30am 

Slideshow
 DogSpin brings together reviews and guides for dog-owners in New York.
DogSpin.com Brings Canine Guide to New Yorkers
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NEW YORK CITY — For the urban pooch, a run around the block sometimes just isn't enough.

That's why DogSpin.com, a new Yelp-like site for the city's dog services, has guides to trendy trips for your hound that could only happen in New York, including a tour of Chelsea galleries for the art-inspired pooch, a cruise on the Staten Island Ferry and a guide to Brooklyn's dog-friendly pubs.

The site, founded by Brian Scully, is meant to help make dog life in the city a little easier, including reviews of dog amenities across the city, maps of nearby dog runs with information and photos, and other canine resources.

Scully, who always had dogs growing up in Northern California, said he had a big shock when he decided to get his dog Zuzu after a decade in New York.

"All these services, they can be expensive," he said. "A vet can cost more than a human doctor, so you've got to find a good one."

He immediately realized things were different here — there was no backyard to take your dog out. He needed to find a dog walker, a trainer, a vet and dog parks for his pooch. He also found a community of like-minded New Yorkers who wanted their dogs to enjoy the city as much as they did.

"We're trying to bring people quirky, fun, interesting things you can do with you dog — only in New York City," Scully said.

The system, which launched last Thursday, currently has a comments section in which readers can give their thoughts about each particular vet, dog walker and pet store, but Scully hopes to soon add a full-on ratings system, similar to Yelp.

"It's a resource center for all the different aspect of services you might need for your dog," Scully said from his apartment near Madison Square Park.

There are also resources for travelers, including a map of the city's affordable, dog-friendly hotels. On a rainy day like Wednesday, readers had their say on whether dog rain coats were useful or ridiculous. DogSpin has recruited dog trainers that readers can consult with tricky puppy problems.

"Dog services in this city, it's a $1.5 billion industry, so it's good to have a guide to all of it," Scully said.

He also hopes to someday take the site to other cities that have similar pet-owning issues to New York, but for right now, it's puppy steps.

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