PetPlace 2020: Year In Review

2020 was quite a year. We started off strong, but soon ran out of toilet paper and weren’t allowed to leave the house. We were laid off from jobs, struggled to pay bills, and had to make tough decisions.

However, 2020 also gave us reasons to celebrate. We held drive-by birthday parades for friends and loved ones, got creative about keeping in touch with those who mattered most, and figured out how to use Zoom for everything. We adopted new pets, spent more time outside (socially distanced, of course!), baked endless trays of brownies, loaves of banana bread and sourdough from scratch, and some of us even got to finally work from home.

At PetPlace, we are celebrating our favorite stories from the past year. Here’s a look at our
year in review:

The Pets of PetCon: Special Needs Dogs

We had a pawsome experience attending PetCon before the world shut down, getting up close and personal with some of Instagram’s most famous pets. In addition to being super cute, some of these celeb pets included special needs pups that warmed our hearts.

PetPlace Chat: Meet NatGeo’s Newest Celeb Vets

We had the pleasure of interviewing the husband and wife veterinarian team behind NatGeo WILD’s Heartland Docs. Doctors Ben and Erin Schroeder spoke to us about the highs and lows of being farm town veterinarians, as well as how they navigate working together as a married couple.

The Impact of WeatherTech’s #PetsMakeADifference Campaign

Super Bowl 54 seems like a lifetime ago, but one commercial stood apart from the rest for us. It starred Scout, the beloved family golden retriever of WeatherTech’s CEO, who had been diagnosed with a rare heart tumor, but survived thanks to the dedicated team of doctors at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine. We had the pleasure of speaking with the Dean, Mark Markel, about working with Scout and the impact of the #PetsMakeADifferenceCampaign.

Westminster Dog Show: Meet the Breeds

We got to attend one of the world’s most renowned dog competitions, Westminster Dog Show, in New York City back in February (is it me, or does that seem like 3 years ago now?!!). We met some fabulous dogs, spoke with their owners and trainers, and got a behind the scenes look at what goes on at the famous dog show.

PetPlace Chat: An Interview With the Dog Doc, Dr. Marty Goldstein

Dr. Marty has been a leading voice in integrative veterinary medicine for over 45 years, so when his new documentary, The Dog Doc, debuted in March, we didn’t want to miss an opportunity to chat with him.

Indoor Exercises & Fun Activities For Your Pet

When COVID hit and we were all trapped inside with pets and loved ones (or solo, making sourdough bread), we turned to one of our experts, Dr. Alett Mekler, to create ways to keep our pets active and engaged during lockdown.

The Ultimate Guide to Road Tripping with Your Cat

Bored at home and want to hit the road? We get you’ve got you covered! We interviewed Holly Anne Dustin of Feline Friends Cat Care and Consulting to collect the best tips for road tripping with your cat.

How Service Dogs Provide Care During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Service dog organizations were negatively impacted by the pandemic, which forced them to halt all advanced dog training. As a result, people in need of service dogs were forced to remain on the waiting list for one of these well-trained pups

COVID-19 Guide to Pet Care

With so many businesses shuttered during lockdown, many had to get creative with how to safely service their customers (like vets and dog walkers). Others, like dog groomers, were forced to shut down completely. Here are some ways that pet businesses were affected by the pandemic, and DIY tips for grooming your pet at home (just in case).

The Puppy Checklist

2020 was a great year for pet adoptions, even though it was a dumpster fire for almost everything else. We put together a helpful checklist for those who are considering adopting or welcoming a new puppy into their home this year. Its value will extend well beyond 2020!

Tap Into Your Deeper Self with Equine Guided Learning

We had the opportunity to interview Gail Carruthers, a triple-certified equine guided trainer and co-owner of Skye Blue Acres outside of Toronto. Carruthers and her other facilitators teach you how to “speak horse” to improve your personal development, social-emotional learning, leadership training, and even manage grief.

PetPlace Chat: Meet Brussels Sprout

We were so taken by Brussels Sprout after meeting him at PetCon that we were delighted to be able to interview his mom, Sigrid Neilson, about the Brussels Griffon breed. She gave us some great tips on how to find a reputable breeder and how to support a cause close to her heart.

PetPlace Chat: Here Comes Meatball

Like Sprout, we also met Meatball at PetCon and jumped at the chance to interview his dad, Tony Hayden, about discovering that Meatball had a genetic disease called cerebellar hypoplasia and how the Internet ended up being the savior he never knew they both needed.

Safely Handling Backyard Chickens

2020 was a weird year, which explains why #backyardchickens started trending on Instagram (over 1.5 million posts!). We interviewed two backyard chicken coop experts, Tory McCagg and Stacia Campbell Howard, to get the best tips for those of you brave enough to raise your own #backyardchickens.

Survey Results: Returning to Work After Lockdown

After the first wave of the pandemic was over, we surveyed over 300 PetPlace readers to ask them about how they felt about returning to work after spending so much quality time at home with their pets. The answers might surprise you.

The Pet-Friendly Travel Guide

Although travel was a bit more limited in 2020 than in previous years, we put together a pet-friendly travel guide for a handful of states across the country. Since people aren’t flying as much right now, we wanted to make it easy for you to take a road trip with your pet.

PetPlace Chat: @DoggosDoingThings

If you love pet memes, there’s a good chance you have seen (or already follow) posts from the insanely popular Instagram account @DoggosDoingThings. When we found out that they published a book, we reached out to chat with the man behind the account, John Trulli.

The Breed Guide

With so many people interested in becoming pet parents this past year, we decided to launch a Breed Guide to help make it easier to find the best breed for your home and personality. Expect more breeds and detailed information from our amazing team of vets in the year ahead!

PetPlace Chat: Philadelphia Councilwoman Bass and The #PlayFree Initiative

PetPlace is headquartered in Philadelphia, so when we learned that our city was on the list for a new initiative from Stonyfield Yogurt to create organic parks for people and pets across the country, we wanted to know more. We spoke with Philadelphia Councilwoman Cindy Bass about her involvement in the program and why it’s a great initiative for cities to support.

Pawsome Fall Style Report

Fashion Week might have been canceled this year, but that didn’t stop us from letting our inner fashionista flag fly! The Pawsome Fall Style Report highlights a variety of cute options for the most stylish of pups.

Animal Shelter Appreciation Week: See Inside Delaware Humane Association

We sent our video team to the Delaware Humane Association in Wilmington, Delaware to get a better understanding of how shelters work and what you can do to show support. Plus, we got to meet some pretty cute cats and dogs while we were there, which is always an added bonus!

Election 2020: Cats vs. Dogs

It was certainly a contentious year for politics, especially when it came down to who you voted for: cats or dogs?! We broke down all the important issues for each candidate in order to help you better understand their platform and figure out once and for all if you’re a cat person or a dog person.

PetPlace Chat: Meet the Hosts of the National Dog Show

Every Thanksgiving, the National Dog Show is broadcast live from Philadelphia, bringing joy to millions of dog lovers across the country. Although it was not open to the public this year due to public health concerns, we were able to chat with the co-hosts of the event, David Frei and John O’Hurley, about their nearly two-decade partnership, their lifelong affection for canines, and what to expect from this year’s competition.

Holiday Gift Guide for Pets and Pet Lovers

We launched our first PetPlace Holiday Gift Guide, which featured a variety of gifts for pets and pet lovers from some of our favorite brands. Although the holidays are behind us, if you still want to purchase a little something special for your pet, check it out (and maybe start making your list for next year... too soon?).