When you visit historic Starkville, Mississippi, you’re in “Bulldog Country” since its home to the University of Mississippi which ranks in at #142 in the U.S. News 2014 edition of Best Colleges. There’s so much to love about Starkville and since we like taking Kirby with us whenever we can, we decided to focus on the dog friendly areas, and the great news is, there’s a lot!
First and foremost is the campus sitting on 4,200 acres which greatly contributes to the Starkville community. The official school mascot is an AKC registered English Bulldog named Bully, the most unique symbol of Mississippi State University tradition is the cowbell, and the colors are white & maroon. "Woof, woof, who let the Dawgs out!"
This is where you’ll find the College of Veterinary Medicine. Kirby helps foster homeless dogs in our home through the Homeward Bound Project which was started in 2007 and is run by the current vet students. About every six weeks these dogs travel north to no-kill organizations in Connecticut, New Hampshire and New York where people are waiting to adopt them. "So far, 3,285 lives have been saved and still counting! I've shared my home with ten of these amazing, loving dogs who found their forever homes which saves two lives cos it opens a space for another. You should really try it!"
There’s also yearly classes held for AKC Canine Good Citizen, rally, and agility training taught by the vet students. "I've taken these classes so I can tell you about the great trainers we have here who helped me earn my CGC and RN titles."
A doggerific place to hang out on a weekend afternoon is in The Cotton District located between the campus and downtown Starkville. It has a French Quarter flavor with all the little cottages, apartments, shops, and cafés intermingled. "As long as we mind our manners us dogs are allowed on the café patios or porches while our humans socialize with a few beers and good food. It's fun watching the other dogs and humans walking, biking, and just hanging out. They always bring us a fresh bowl of water and I usually get a few bites of something tasty."
Every spring is the Cotton District Festival filled with arts and crafts, lots of great food, and live music. "You’ll see a lot of dogs at this event cos we all want to go have fun with our families!"
Not far from the Cotton District is Moncrief Park, home of the only dog park which has two large fenced areas – one for small dogs like Kirby and one for large dogs. There are shade trees, benches and picnic tables, and a real working water fountain for both humans and canines. They just added a small agility section. Right next to the dog park is the kiddie park, a large covered pavilion, and a public swimming pool which is where the local shelter hosts the annual Pooch Pool Party at the end of the summer. "This is my favorite event of the year cos us dogs get to swim for three hours and all the money goes to help the shelter dogs. One year I won the Best Fetch Title and there were two labs n the race. Ok so it was only by a nose."
There’s a lot of great places to shop for just about anything you’re looking for at little specialty boutiques and numerous chain stores. "Us dogs can go in Lowe’s, The Oktibbeha County Co-op, and the Tractor Supply store while Pet Smart is just thirty minutes away in Columbus, Mississippi. This is good training since I've learned to walk next to the cart and stop and sit when my humans stop to look at something."
Starkville, being a college community, has a large number of rental homes and apartment complexes with more being built every day. The great thing is most are pet friendly only requiring a pet deposit and small monthly fee. No matter what part of town your in you will almost always see someone walking or running with their dog.
So there you have it – Kirby's top dog furiendly reasons to love Starkville, Mississippi! "Me and Bully be seeing you soon!"
We’re joining up with some other bloggers who are sharing their dog friendly towns so if you’re thinking of moving, or just making travel plans with your pup, be sure to check them out!