RT’s pet service guide: Posh options for pedigree chums

Moving your life to a new country is hard enough without leaving your pets behind. Whether you brought your four-legged friend with you or just plan to do so, all you will need is on hand in the capital.

­Shopping spree

To start with, there are almost 400 pet stores in the capital. The oldest and the largest of them is located right on Arbat street, offering the clients a wide range of pedigree kittens and puppies. If you did not find the breed you like on display, you can pre-order it.

If easy access is what you need, listen to “Beethoven”. It is a chain of some 40 stores around Moscow. Their slogan says “Come on in, and bring your owner!” Everything your pet picks can be delivered to your door.

Remember that Moscow’s environment authorities urge pet owners to put shoes on their animals in winter time. This is more about health than fashion: The anti-icing chemicals used on the city’s streets can cause burns on the animals’ paws, so the winter boots are the must.

­Vet’s helping hand

While Moscow does not lack qualified vets, finding one that speaks your language might be a problem.

“Movet” is probably the most well-known clinic for expat pets in the capital. They will come to rescue if you need to pick an animal, get it in or out of the country, or even find it a temporary home. However, if it is your beloved ferret that got sick, you will have to seek help elsewhere.

“We don’t work with any exotic animals and no birds,” Valeriya Shishmareva, interpreter at “Movet” clinic, told RT. “But if expats need their birds or exotic animals to be checked, we can help them take their animals to special vet clinics and help with translation for free.”

­Pet gym – key to healthy lifestyle

If you want to ensure that flea killer is the only medicine you ever need, exercise is the answer.

The gym called Dog Palace offers training and rehabilitation programs for animals.

It is very popular among local pet owners, but just four years ago many in Moscow called the idea barking madness.

“People didn’t take it seriously,” Olga Zolotukhina, director general at Dog Palace center, told RT. “But I didn’t invent anything new. I’ve seen plenty such centers in Europe and decided to open one in Moscow because I’m a dog owner myself. We’ve studied the way it’s done abroad. Anyone can pour water in a tub, but you also need to know what to do next and which exercises really help.”

­Pet spa and pet limousine

After a healthy workout, why not drop by for a haircut or a SPA-procedure? The way they treat pets at “Milord” – a chain of five grooming studios – will make any owner jealous.

Basic dog-grooming will cost around a thousand more than elsewhere in Moscow. “Milord” also offers ozone-therapy, designer clothes and even celebrating a birthday in style.

After all that, a walk through Moscow’s mud may not be a good idea. Few taxi companies will take you on board with a furry friend, unless it is “Zootaxi”.

“There are about 6 million pets in Moscow, and driving them around can be a challenge,” Yulia Godunova, director general of Zootaxi, told RT. “We can be especially helpful if your animal is ill – our drivers can carry it and make it comfortable inside the car. And it’s not just cats and dogs we drive. We’ve had goats, too, iguanas, even a snake.”

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