Adventure Bucket List for My Dogs

For too many people it takes a terrifying illness, hit- ting retirement age, or some other life altering event to honestly begin thinking about the things they want to experience in their lifetime. In many of these cases, it will then be too late to turn these dreams into a reality

Annette White

By now, it’s probably obvious to everyone that my pets are the absolute light of my life as cheesy as that sounds. All of my pets are rescues and most of them have sob stories, BUT it’s become our mission to give them the absolute best life possible. We’ve had Atlas since he was a puppy after adopting him from the pound. He’s had a life of adventure, luxury, being spoiled, and tons of unique excursions/events. As for Mickey, we’re pretty sure that when we got him he really hadn’t had much of a life. So, we came up with the idea of creating both dogs a bucket list.

Atlas has done SO many of these, but we wanted to create one they can do together with things they both love. It’s even more important now that they’re older, so we’re doing as much as we can to make them happier than ever. Below are just the first set of ideas we came up with and we’ve crossed a ton off the past 2 years. I’m sure there will be a part two of this post as we add more, experience more, and, of course, take tons of pictures.

Checked Off the Bucket List

We’ve gotten a great head start on our doggo bucket list which is super exciting. Below are some pictures and details from each adventure and treat we’ve gotten to do with them!

Pup Cups

Surprisingly, we’ve never done this with either of our dogs until recently. Lancaster does a First Friday event with shops open later, the occasional food truck, live music, etc. We were treating them to a walk downtown and treated ourselves to ice cream. They didn’t have a flavor safe for the dogs, so we decided to go to a local coffeeshop to surprise them with the pup cups. Atlas’s was gone in about 5 seconds and Mickey looked like he was about to explode from excitement and pure joy. We will absolutely be doing this again for them.

Camping

After lockdown ended, we decided to go camping with our friends who were in our bubble. We drove to the Finger Lakes region of NY and set up tents. The dogs loved the new sniffs. The grass was a little crunchy, so it wasn’t ideal for lounging around for them, but they loved the grilled meat treats, new walks, hiking, and just hanging out with us outside for an entire weekend. Turns out, I don’t have pictures from this weekend, but know that it was super fun and our dogs were happy. That’s what counts.

Wine Trail

The Finger Lakes region is one of our favorite places to take a trip with our dogs. We’ve taken the pups to WildWood Farm’s bed and breakfast about 4 times now and will continue to do so for years to come. We love staying on the farm, hiking nearby trails, and bringing them to the wine, cheese, and food places. The area is insanely dog friendly, so it’s always one of our favorite places to take them since we know they can come with us everywhere.

Cheese Tour

The last time we went to Watkins Glen, we decided to take a cheese tour at Muranda Cheese. While many of the cheeses were not dog-friendly, we did sneak them a few bites from the pain/non-garlic/non-spicy cheeses we got to taste. Plus, once we got home and used the cheeses we got there, they absolutely enacted the cheese tax and got to sample even more.

Glamping

Over Halloween one year we decided to rent an extremely adorable cabin/tent complete with slide about 1.5 hours away from home. We loved the mini road trip away from home and the fact that we got to camp comfortably in the middle of the woods. The dogs absolutely loved it. The smells were their favorite and they loved snuggling with us by the campfire. It was a very soggy weekend, but we’d do it again in a heartbeat.

Road Trip

We’ve taken SO many of these with the dogs that it’s hard to know how many we’ve taken them on. We’ve taken mini road trips to town close by, driven to taken them on hikes in new areas, taken them to new cities, gone to new states, and so much more. They love exploring, so it’s the perfect way to spoil them with new adventures.

Train Ride

A few months ago, we took a mini road trip to Jim Thorpe with friends. We wanted to walk around and explore a place we’d never been before. While I was researching attractions, we looked up the popular train ride and OH MY GOODNESS it was dog friendly. We immediately booked it.

All of our dogs loved it. They were nervous about the steps getting on and off, but other than that they had a blast. They loved the wind in their faces, all the smells, watching the scenery go by, and getting pet by literally everyone. Can’t recommend this enough. I’m so happy we got to take them on such a unique experience.

Dog Park Play Time

A few years ago, someone won a major contest to have a insanely amazing dog park built. We were lucky enough that person lived in Lancaster. It has two sides, one for large dogs and another for little dogs. Both have seating, turf that’s regularly cleaned, big trees for shade, and there’s even mini water parks for the dogs. It’s honestly one of the best dog parks I’ve ever seen and our boys love going there.

Hiking

We weren’t sure if Mickey would like hiking, but we gave it a shot around the time we got him. Turns out, this chihuahua gremlin LOVES hiking and Atlas is obsessed. We’ve taken them all over Lancaster County, Williamsburg, VA, Virginia Beach, VA, and Finger Lakes, NY to name just a few. They love adventuring as much as we do and it makes me day to see how happy they are every time we take them.

Photoshoot

Atlas has had a few, but we did a family photo shoot after we got Mickey as well. Those pictures are hands down my favorite pictures of us of all time. We had an absolute blast and it’s such a great way to have really fun pictures where everyone is together in them.

Items to Complete

These are the rest of the items on the list…so far. We keep coming up with new ideas, so as we do, I’ll keep writing new updates!

Best Burger in PA

One of the restaurants near us got voted best burger in PA, so we absolutely NEED to take the boys to experience this deliciousness. Plain burger patty for them and all the fixings for the humans!

Night Out at the Movies

Dogs deserve to go see a drive in movie. At some point in the near future, we’re planning on driving out towards Philly to give them a fantastic night out at the movies.

Nose Classes

Atlas took agility classes and loved them, but it’s not quite Mickey’s speed or style. Instead, we want to put both of our fur dudes into nose work classes. They will learn how to find treats just by sniffing and I honestly think that would be their version of heaven.

Choose Their Own Fun Day

I saw a game people played with their dogs on Instagram to create the perfect day for them. They wrote down their dogs’ favorite things to do on index cards and showed them two options at a time. The one they pawed or sniffed was the one they ended up doing. They kept doing that all day long for an epic choose your own adventure day but the dog version. I need to make this happen.

Beach Trip

Atlas grew up 20 minutes from the beach and loved chasing waves and rolling around in the sand. Mickey likes walking along the water, but I doubt he’d like the ocean. It’s just too aggressive for his tiny little old man body. So, we want to take them on a beach vacation where Atlas can frolic on the beach and Mickey can casually look at it while walking on a boardwalk somewhere. Best of both worlds for both of them.

PA Renaissance Faire

I love that the Red Faire near us has dog-friendly weekends. How freaking cool is that!?We’re absolutely going to take both the boys to one of the themed days so they can have a delightfully nerdy time with us. I’ll do my best to have them in some sort of costume or festive garb.

Baseball Game

We live a few blocks away from a baseball stadium. It’s for a local team, so nothing massive, but they do a lot of fun events throughout the year. One we haven’t tried yet but need to is the dog-friendly Wednesday home game. Baseball and a hot dog for the dogs? I think so.

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