You can get Fido a chew toy to celebrate National Dog Week in September or you can give a little more. Why not spend some quality bonding time with Spot on Bone Appetit Dog-Friendly Dog Tour, offered Saturday, Sept. 29, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
The tour is organized by Milwaukee Food Tours and includes treat samples and fun activities at dog bakeries, parks and more. The bus tour will also include lunch at a pet-friendly restaurant.
"We were inspired to create the tour by past tour attendees who have requested a dog-friendly tour through the years, and we thought that National Dog Week would be the perfect time to host Bone Appetit," says Theresa Nemetz, founder of Milwaukee Food Tours.
"We'll be visiting an indoor dog park, a doggie social club for a treat tasting and agility lesson, lunch at a dog-friendly location, and a doggie spa for some coffee, dessert and relaxation. This is the inaugural Bone Appetit dog friendly food tour but we hope to make it an annual Milwaukee Food Tours tradition during future National Dog Week celebrations."
The tour costs $60 for one person and one dog. A second adult can join you for $45. The fee includes transportation, lunch and dog treats and toys.
It also promises to be an interesting experiment for Milwaukee Food Tours, says Nemetz, who is up for the challenge and has thought things through carefully. I asked her if she expects to stop at a lot more trees that she does on a typical food tour.
"Adding the element of dogs to the tour is sure to create some unexpected challenges along the way," she says.
"In anticipation that the dogs don't know each other, we are meeting at a dog park and will be working with professionals to introduce them. Plus, we hope that all participants enjoy riding on a bus. Bathroom breaks will be featured throughout the tour, and each dog will be receiving a doggie bag filled with treats and toys to entertain them along the way."
The tour will be limited to 20 dogs and Nemetz asks dog owners to consider whether or not their dog is socially attuned to such a tour. Will it get along with other dogs? Will it be comfortable riding on a school bus?
She reminds, too, that dogs must have their DHLPP and rabies vaccinations and must sign a waiver attesting that the shots have been administered. Dogs must be on a leash and Milwaukee Food Tours reserves the right to refuse attendance and refund tour fee if a dog shows aggression at the start of the tour.
Although Nemetz doesn't have a dog of her own, she does have canine experience as part of an extended pet family.
"(Husband) Wade and I are not lucky enough to be dog owners ourselves yet, we are aunt and uncle to two fabulous Labradoodles named Ginger and Cooper, along with a German Short Hair named Moses."
Tickets for the tour and more information can be found at milwaukeefoodtours.com/beyond.php.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.