My two rescue beagles Seaver and Shasta look a lot alike but are polar opposites when it comes to personality. Seaver bravely patrols the world on foot, but cowers at the prospect of getting in a car. Shasta is afraid of footsteps yet fearlessly leaps into any car. As Shasta gets older, we have to hold her back because she’ll overestimate her leaping ability and bounce herself off the side of the car instead of jumping into it.
The first time she did that, I was running late, loading my kids up to go to school and the dogs to go to doggie day care, and my husband had already left for work. After Shasta bounced off the car, she yelped and seemed to limp a bit. My mind raced and I wondered if I should take her to the vet with the kids right away, or drop the kids off and then take her to the vet … She wasn’t in mortal danger, but I didn’t want her to be in pain. I also realized I was going to miss my first few meetings at work entirely in either scenario.
In late 2017, I saw a kitten — that seemed to have been dumped on the road with his littermates — get run over. I had jumped out of the car and told my husband to take the kids home so they didn’t have to see a suffering (or dead) kitten. Thankfully, another driver pulled over and helped me get the kitten to my house so I could put him in a laundry basket lined with towels and drive him to the emergency room. The whole process probably took an hour, and if the kitten hadn’t been paralyzed and in shock, a laundry basket in the front seat would have been a really bad idea.
The good news is that in both cases things worked out. Shasta shook off her body slam into my car and didn’t need to go to the vet that day. The kitten made a full recovery, other than a tail that won’t twitch and a swagger in his gait. With the help of Silicon Valley Pet Project, he and his brother (who was found by a neighbor up a tree in the middle of the street that day) were placed in a forever home together.
But while I can get food delivered to my door or a ride anywhere in a matter of minutes — and I can call 911 if I ever need an ambulance — there wasn’t anyone on-call to help me transport injured animals to the vet.
Then I found out about 360 Pet Cab. Founder Jeanne Salem and I share a first name and a lifelong love of animals. If I’m ever in a bind, 360 Pet Cab can transport my dogs to and from the vet, groomer, or doggie day care. While we thankfully haven’t needed the emergency transport service yet, it’s so comforting knowing there is an on-call pet transport service to safely and reliably get my pets to the vet in an emergency too.
Most cars just aren’t set up to safely and comfortably transport an injured or sick dog. And 360 Pet Cab has the necessary equipment like oxygen plus professionally trained staff who know how to gently handle dogs even when they’re big, scared, and hurting.
Recently, 360 Pet Cab was called on for a last-minute transport from Sage Veterinary Centers in Redwood City to an owner’s home in San Mateo. The dog was a beautiful German Shepherd named Freedom, and his owner, Barbara, was the only person he allowed to touch him.
Jeanne helped get Freedom into the van with a portable staircase. Barbara sat in the back cab seat to comfort Freedom while they drove.
On their way to Barbara’s home, Jeanne learned Freedom is a retired police service dog who assists Barbara, who is also retired from the police force. When they arrived, Jeanne used a sling to help Freedom walk into the house. Freedom faced her owner while walking so he felt comfortable to allow Jeanne to help lift the 80-pound dog. It took about 30 minutes to get him in, but Freedom was guided comfortably into his crate at home. This all takes a lot of patience and careful thought to keep the pet patient calm.
I’m really impressed with the professionalism and loving care with which 360 Pet Cab serves its human and animal customers. Whether handling emergency or nonemergency transport, this new service meets an unmet need here in the Bay Area.
Jeannie Entin is a communications consultant and freelance writer based in San Jose. She is the proud owner of brother/sister beagle rescues named Seaver and Shasta. Connect with her on LinkedIn. Pet Cab 360 is a new service that takes pets on appointments.
Freedom needed a ride and Pet Cab 360 provided.
Main article photo by: Photos courtesy Pet Cab 360