Tag Archives: Animal Medical Centre

Client Testimonials

    Testimonial from Roberta Flack
I have depended on Pet Chauffeur for ten (10) years to help me get my pets to life saving situations. Whether the trip is long or short, my animals are always looked after with the greatest care.  It’s good to know this kind of assistance is available and on time.  Thank you David and crew for being in my life.  Even if my concerts and public appearances take me from home, I can trust Pet Chauffeur to look after the travel needs of all of the dogs and cats, who are a part of my family.  BIG THANKS!
” Testimonial from another happy client”
   About seven years ago, in late November, my dog needed major surgery at Animal Medical Center in the far E 60s, a pretty far walk from my UWS apartment. My dog was small, but never learned to ride in a bag; she was a rescue and freaked out when she was put in the bag, so I worried that she had had some kind of trauma about being shut up in places and didn’t push it.AMC called me on Thanksgiving night to let me know that she could be picked up if I wanted to come get her. I didn’t want her to have to spend one more minute there than necessary so I walked over there in a mix of light snow and rain; I thought I needed to save all the money I could for a cab ride home and didn’t even want to buy a  Metrocard. I worried about getting a cab, though. Cabs often pass people, even with small dogs, and I didn’t see many as I walked over.My dog had had a giant tumor removed from her side. She had been shaved and was stapled up from end to end like some kind of Frankenstein dog. I wrapped her in a blanket and headed out, apologizing for the weather and hoping I’d be able to get a cab somehow.Then outside the exit to the hospital I saw an orange and blue van labeled “Pet Chauffeur.” I walked up and asked the driver if he was waiting for someone. No, he had just dropped someone off. I asked how much it would cost to take me and my dog back to my apartment and it turned out I had just enough money with me. The driver took us home in the bad weather, without my dog ever having to wait in the cold rain and snow at all.I don’t have any business advice to offer Mr. Lang. I just wanted to say how much I appreciated that van being there that night and I sincerely hope he makes it through this recession storm. Good luck–

Cities Will Talk to the Animals by Going Orange

By Sharon L. Peters, Special for USA TODAY
April 10th, 2011   The color orange will infuse landmarks Tuesday from New York and Philadelphia to San Francisco.
Manhattan’s Empire State Building, Chicago’s Sears Tower, San Francisco’s City Hall and Philly’s quaint quarter-mile span called Boathouse Row will be lit in orange; the famous Wall Street charging bull sculpture will be decorated in the color; and the Louisiana Boardwalk fountain in Bossier City, La., will look to be spraying orange water.

It’s the 141st birthday of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, and people and groups nationwide are donning and draping the ASPCA’s signature color to “celebrate the special human-animal bond,” says Jo Sullivan, the organization’s vice president of development and communication.

School teachers and librarians will offer special-educational programs, shelters are holding special animal events, and animal-friendly businesses have devised ways to trumpet support of the day. Pet Chauffeur in Manhattan the premier pet taxi service ,will tie large orange bows on its cars,pet transportation is a big service in NYC. Petride.com 212-696-9744 is open 365 days a year.  Also Jack London Square in Oakland will display ASPCA posters.


• New York – A celebration at Union Square from 4 to 8 p.m. will feature Animal Planet personalities, a costume party and an adoption fair.

• Bossier City, La. – Louisiana Boardwalk merchants will dress themselves and their establishments in orange, eateries are concocting orange drinks, and their will be a pet costume party.

• The L.A. Coliseum – “Go Orange for ASPCA Day” will streak across the Jumbe\otron.

• Austin – The Round Rock Express minor league baseball team will make an announcement during the game, and employees will wear orange wristbands.

The efforts are an outgrowth of a Manhattan celebration last year of the New York-based ASPCA’s 140th birthday. Response to the event extended far beyond New York as supporters from all over the country e-mailed goofy costumed-pet pictures to support the day.
“It was to have been a one-time event,” Sullivan says, but organizers realized that they had “tapped into something.”

Three decades ago, valuing animals “was not on the radar” of most Americans, ASPCA president Ed Sayres says. But society has become a more animal-conscious place, he says.

More than 50,000 ASPCA orange wristbands are expected to be ordered online for the celebration (1 million are in circulation already). The ASPCA has created 10 animal e-greetings that website visitors can send to friends and family, and the group is posting several “go orange” ideas.

Dogs Sniff Out Lung Cancer

Specially trained dogs can identify most patients with lung cancer by smelling their breath, researchers said.

Sniffing 100 breath samples from patients with biopsy-confirmed lung cancer, the dogs failed to flag only 29, reported Thorsten Walles, MD, of Schillerhoehe Hospital in Gerlingen, Germany, and colleagues online in the European Respiratory Journal.

Among 400 other samples from individuals without lung cancer, the canine sniff test gave false positives for just 28, the researchers found.

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Action Points

  • Explain that specially trained dogs could identify most patients with lung cancer by smelling their breath.
  • Point out that the findings may be more important for confirming that human exhalations contain markers for lung cancer, which eventually may be detectable by more conventional means.

However, Walles and colleagues suggested that the findings were most important for confirming that human exhalations contain markers for lung cancer, which eventually may be detectable by more conventional means.

“This is a big step forward in the diagnosis of lung cancer, but we still need to precisely identify the compounds observed in the exhaled breath of patients,” said Walles in a press release.

Several earlier studies have found that dogs, with their keen sense of smell, can identify patients with various forms of cancer, including tumors of the breast, colon, and lung merely by sniffing. The proposition originated in 1989 with a case report of a man whose melanoma was diagnosed because his dog kept sniffing the lesion.

The dogs used in the current study were young family pets  —  two German shepherds, one Labrador retriever, and one Australian shepherd. Using test tubes containing exhalations from 35 lung cancer patients and 60 healthy controls, a professional dog trainer taught the animals to lie down in front of tubes with samples from the patients.

During both the training and the subsequent testing phase, each sample was given to the dogs only once so that they would not simply learn to recognize individual participants’ characteristic odors.

The testing involved 50 healthy people, 25 patients with histologically confirmed lung cancer, and 50 patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD). These were different individuals than those providing samples for the training phase.

In the cancer patient group, one patient had stage I disease, two each at IIa and IIb tumors, four were staged IIIa, five had IIIb disease, and 11 were at stage IV.

Blinded observers watched the dogs as they each sniffed at five tubes per session. If a dog appeared to hesitate in front of a tube, it was automatically recorded as an incorrect result. The investigators also took a variety of steps to keep from subtly influencing the dogs.

The testing was conducted in three phases. First, the dogs were presented with samples from healthy controls and lung cancer patients. Next, samples from lung cancer and COPD patients were presented. Finally, the dogs evaluated samples from all three groups.

Somewhat surprisingly, the dogs had the most difficulty in the first test, discriminating the lung cancer patient samples from those of healthy people. The total number of correct results from the four dogs was 22 versus 18 false results.

Accuracy was much better in the second phase, with the dogs correctly identifying 32 samples from the COPD and lung cancer patients against eight false results.

Results were better still in the third test, with 19 correct results and only one incorrect.

Overall, the sensitivity for detecting lung cancer was 71% overall (95% CI not reported). There was little difference in accuracy according to disease stage, the researchers indicated: All samples from the sole stage I patient had positive results in the sniff test. Accuracy rates for other disease stages were:

  • 75% for stage IIa
  • 75% for stage IIb
  • 94% for IIIa
  • 75% for stage IIIb
  • 63% for stage IV

The dogs varied somewhat in their ability to sniff out cancer accurately, with one dog scoring 68% of samples correctly while another had 84% correct results (kappa statistic 0.436).

Specificity overall was 93% (95% CI not reported).

Walles and colleagues also calculated “corporate dog decision” accuracy by counting as accurate only those results on which three of the four dogs gave the same result. Sensitivity of these group decisions was 72% (95% CI 51% to 88%), with specificity of 94% (95% CI 87% to 98%).

The researchers determined as well that the dogs were as accurate in classifying smokers versus nonsmokers, indicating that the animals were not simply responding to tobacco-related breath components.

Because their study ruled out a role in the results for smoking and certain other potential confounders, the current study is an advance over previous research on dog sniff tests for cancer.

It “confirms the existence of a stable marker (or scent pattern) that is strongly associated with lung cancer and independent of COPD,” Walles and colleagues wrote, “reliably discriminated from tobacco smoke, food odors and (potential) drug metabolites.”

Whether dogs will ultimately be better than machines for breath analysis remains to be determined, they indicated.

“Electronic nose technologies” are not yet practical because of their complicated sampling procedures and vulnerability interference, the researchers commented.

Dogs, on the other hand, are “virtually on the verge of respectability” for disease detection. Yet without better understanding of what they are responding to, it will be impossible to develop a reliable screening test for lung cancer based on their abilities, Walles and colleagues suggested.

“Unfortunately, dogs cannot communicate the biochemistry of the scent of cancer,” they lamented.

By John  Gever, Senior Editor, MedPage Today
Published: August 18, 2011

Hydrotherapy – great exercise for cats and dogs

Pet Taxi Service

If your dog suffers from arthritis or has recently undergone surgery, your veterinary surgeon may have suggested  hydrotherapy, also known as water therapy, to help get them back to optimum health.

For some people, the idea of getting their beloved pet to swim if their joints are stiff or they are recovering from an operation seems a bit too much.  But hydrotherapy is actually the most gentle way to help the affected areas heal and retain their mobility.

Swimming helps to improve general fitness, stamina, muscle tone and is helpful in recovering from injury or operation. Muscle wastage begins within three days of any immobilization, so to prevent further weakness or injury it is important to rebuild, through safe exercise, any muscles that have deteriorated.  Swimming is an excellent form of exercise because most of the muscles normally used in movement are involved – without the stresses caused by motion on hard ground.

Some of the benefits of hydrotherapy are: increased speed of recovery, relief of pain, swelling & stiffness, increased tissue healing and increased range of motion in joints.

Water 4 Dogs

Based in New York, Water4Dogs is a state of the art facility that has a number of great rehabilitation programs for poorly dogs.  For example, their intensive rehabilitation package offers amongst other things swimming, a water treadmill workout and rehabilitation exercises if your dog is recovering from knee, hip or back surgeries or suffers with arthritis. This facility has two Ferno underwater treadmills and a custom-made swimming pool with an overhead lift that can support and carry any size dog.

Animal Medical Centre

The Animal Centre is unique in that it provides state-of-the-art therapies for cats, dogs, birds and other exotic animals.  They have a whole slew of treatments for sick animals which includes water therapy in a hydrotherapy tub with whirlpool jets and underwater treadmills. 

If you want to know more about other facilities in NY that offer hydrotherapy for your pets, please check us out on our Pet Chauffeur links page or drop us a at toll-free 866 petride. We provide door to door pet taxi service any where in the New York area. Pet transportation has been Pet Chauffeur’s expertise for 15 years. Dog transportation in NYC can be very difficult at times, we make sure your pet travels comfortably and promptly to their important appointments.

24-7 Specialty Animal Hospitals in New York

Did you know that there are specialty animal hospitals dotted around 15 locations in New York that offer 24-7 emergency care all year round?  This is great because once upon a time if your pet had an ailment that a local vet couldn’t deal with, you had to travel for miles to find a specialist.  Now pets that require specialist treatment can find help much closer to home in state of the art facilities with some of the best veterinarians in the country. I’ll highlight three that Pet Chauffeur has done a lot of work with over the years.

Animal Medical Centre
The Animal Medical Centre has been caring for pets in the New York area since 1910. There are 80 highly skilled, board certified specialists on deck to administer both inpatient and outpatient care 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.  The emergency care they offer covers trauma, collapse, severe bleeding, poison ingestion, illness and severe debilitation.  Amongst the specialist services they offer are oncology, interventional radioscopy and endoscopy, treatment of diabetes, neurology, ophthalmology, surgery and alternative and complementary medicines.

VCA Specialty Animal Hospitals
The VCA Specialty Animal Hospitals have over 520 hospitals in 41 states which are manned by more than 1,800 fully qualified veterinarians; 200 of which are board-certified specialists.  The Fifth Avenue Veterinary Specialist is the only 24-hour emergency hospital in lower Manhattan.  They treat urgent cases such as a fall or any type of car accident, ingestion of a foreign object or unknown substance, seizures, bleeding, vomiting blood, or signs of extreme pain.  In addition they offer specialist services such as cardiology, ophthalmology, oncology, interventional radiology and surgery.

Blue Pearl Veterinary Partners
This specialist animal hospital has 18 hospitals and satellites located in seven states within the US including New York, which has branches in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens.  This family-founded practice was born in 1990 and today they employ more than 800 vets with 100 of them being board-certified specialists.  Their emergency wing cares for our furry friends 24 hours a day throughout the year, and typically treats conditions such as seizures, vomiting and diarrhoea vehicular trauma and bloat.  The other disciplines these vets cover are behavioural medicine, cardiology, critical care, dermatology, internal medicine, oncology, neurology ophthalmology, radiology and surgery.

Dog Fancy Press Release

02/14/ 2002
by Dog Fancy Magazine 

Taxis will pass you if you have a dog (unless your’s can hide in a bag). But several companies have vehicles that will transport dogs. For example, Pet Chauffeur (212-696-9744, www.petride.com) has seven passenger vans specially designed for canine comfort and to hold luggage and pet owners, too. Each van has emergency equipment, including a stretcher, muzzle, disinfectants, and safety belt clips.
“We’d be able to take the dogs quickly to an emergency facility,” says owner David Lang, who has worked the show for five years. “All of our drivers are capable of handling and muzzling a dog.”

It’s a Fare Deal for Fido

     By Ralph R. Ortegas

Vicki Ungar gave up yelling, “Hey, taxi!” to go across town with Molly, her lovable cocker spaniel.”Ten taxis will pass you before one will stop. I guess most don’t like people with animals,” said Ungar, a pet hospital manager who travels to work with her pooch daily.
David Lang, owner of Pet Chauffer, picks up another fare. Ungar gets Molly there using Pet Chauffeur, one of the city’s pet-transportation companies that allow humans along for the ride. Animal lovers who travel with sizable dogs, as well as iguanas, ferrets and other exotic critters, have turned to such companies after being banned from most other modes of public transport.
Cabbies take the most heat for passing on pets, objecting because of their size and even for religious and cultural reasons. Many drivers can’t handle fur. “I’m highly allergic to cats, I choke,” said Fernando Mateo, president of the 30,000-member New York Federation of Taxi Drivers, representing livery cabs. But the biggest objection comes from the potential backseat cleanup.
“Cab drivers don’t like to stop for pets because they fear they might do their business in the car,” said David Lang, owner of the Long Island City-based Pet Chauffeur. Potty accidents are no problem for Lang, whose five-minivan fleet comes prepared for cleanups. Lang charges varying rates around town, starting at $25 for 1 to 40 blocks. He also will go out of state. Locally, owners travel free and crates are not usually required.
Ungar calls ahead to schedule her 15-minute ride to work at the Park East Animal Hospital in midtown. Drivers usually arrive early, she said, and often will tune into Molly’s favorite jazz and classical stations for the ride. Dog and owner make at least 10 trips a week, pricey for Ungar since she started taking Molly to work in January. She declined to discuss how much she pays, but explained that 12-year-old Molly has cancer. “She’s very special, and a great companion,” said Ungar, who was recently divorced. “I’ll really do anything for my dog.”
Pet movers make trips to the vet, hospital, groomers, doggie day care, airports and New York’s animal havens.
“I take a customer three times a week from Tribeca to Central Park with her giant, beautiful German shepherd, Harley!” said Larry Reilly, owner of the Manhattan-based Pet Taxi. Reilly also offers tempting excursions to grassy country settings near mountains and lakes, and provides weekend service to the Hamptons. “Reunite yourself and your dog with Mother Nature,” he urges on his Web site, “Meet other pet owners who want to give their pets a better life.”
In 1999, Gail Pierangelino, a former deli owner and groomer from Manhattan, started a one-woman pet-travel business called Petex. Ever since, she has found customers who wouldn’t travel any other way with their animals. “They have no worries,” said Pierangelino, 47. “They call me up, and I’m there. It’s like having a private car for you and your animal.”

At an Indoor Pet Spa, Why Let the Dogs Out?

By Julie V. Iovine

“DON’T overlook the pet industry. It’s big!” said David Lang, the owner of Pet Chauffeur, as he swiveled around at a red light and pointed a digital camera at the two Labradors drooling in the back seat of his bright orange minivan. ”Can I put them on my new Web site?”
Four years ago, Mr. Lang was the delivery guy for a pet store. Today he operates a five-minivan livery service with six drivers on call to drive the city’s most well-heeled dogs to their increasingly hectic weekly rounds of acupuncture, swim therapy, massage and grooming appointments. Pet Chauffeur even drove a miniature schnauzer to Atlanta recently for a man who refused to put his pet on an airplane. The dog’s trip cost $1,736. The man flew.

If the word of advice for ”The Graduate” in 1967 was ”plastics,” in 2000, think ”dogs.” There are 55 million pet dogs in the United States, and 43 percent of owners celebrated their dogs’ birthdays with a wrapped gift. So says an American Animal Hospital Association 1999 Pet Owner Survey that also found that 84 percent of pet owners referred to themselves as their animal’s mom or dad.

On Wednesday, Mr. Lang was dropping a couple of dogs off at the opening party for Biscuits and Bath Doggy Village at 227 East 44th Street. It’s the latest in extreme dog services that have many dog-lovers panting for more, and the rest of the population aghast. ”A lot of people are deluding themselves that animals have the same agendas and appreciations as themselves,” said Dr. Nicholas Dodman, the author of ”The Dog Who Loved Too Much” and ”Dogs Behaving Badly,” both published by Bantam. He noted that turning pets into surrogate children is the natural outcome of younger couples’ delaying reproduction and empty-nesters’ trying to keep a few warm dependent bodies around. ”The fact is that pets are now regarded as family, and people want to do anything they can for them,” he added.

But for every $450 cashmere dog sweater with a Gucci logo, and every bottle of Oh My Dog perfume now on holiday display at Saks, there also seems to be a new enlightened veterinary office or health center like Bonnie’s K9, which opened this fall in Chelsea offering underwater massage to ease the pain of dogs with cancer. The new Biscuits and Bath Doggy Village treads the line between excess and amenity. Petophobes, steer clear.

Housed in a former carriage house, the Doggy Village is a Health and Racquet Club for dogs and cats. Annual memberships start at $1,000. Lunch is available for both humans and dogs.

The village spreads over five floors, each with a greensward of AstroTurf the size and length of two bowling alleys. ”Why not have a wonderful place where people can play with their dogs freely and learn to be a better parent?” said Sandy Zuchert, the co-founder, with her sons Robert Zuchert and John Ziegler, of the 28,000-square-foot facility that cost $1.3 million to renovate.

The decor is Pet Provencal, possibly in honor of the French, who treat their dogs like full citizens of the state. There are white-washed picket fences around the plastic greens, bleached red-tile floors, blue-and-white striped awnings, a cafe around a gazebo, and strategically placed cement sculptures of dogs and cats in playful postures. The 30-foot lap pool in the basement is decorated with hand-painted tiles featuring ducks. On a tour, the two Labradors didn’t notice the birds. ”But did you see the cabana where we’ll blow-dry the doggies’ hair by hand?” Ms. Zuchert asked, as she bent over to greet one of the Labs with a mouth-to-mouth kiss reminiscent of a similarly riveting one in the movie ”Something About Mary.”

Though Ms. Zuchert, 62, compares the place most often to Central Park without restraint laws, it is also a day care and overnight boarding facility. Cats are kept in a neonatal-like ward with cages overlooking an aquarium and a wicker rocking chair. Ms. Zuchert calls it the ”kitty condos.” Drop-off dogs are taken outside every two hours to relieve themselves. While the two Labs were terrified of the steep stairs and their claws grated on the tile floors, they bounded happily out onto the turf. The indoor pool was another story. There was no way they were going to take a dip — too claustrophobic and redolent of chlorine for a couple of outdoor dogs with webbed feet.

Doggy Village is to a kennel what Ian Schrager’s Hudson is to Midtown hotels. Social chemistry will be everything. The restaurant on the top floor is meant to be a scene. Les Deux Magots in Paris it’s not, but there are intimate little tables with metal chairs gathered around a gazebo where humans can buy snack meals for themselves and organic treats for their pets while they all watch each other frolic. There are plans for book readings, parties and ”lectures for children on neutering,” Ms. Zuchert said. Animal education by way of puppy-training classes and behavior modification courses will be promoted in a big way. A veterinary doctor will be on the premises, available by appointment.

There will be agility classes — the latest update on show-off Frisbee throwing to golden retrievers in bandanas. It’s a workout: dogs race through a course, part steeple, part military obstacle. They slalom, they jump, they balance on see-saws, run through tubes, over ramparts, under bars and burst through something that looks like a collapsed parachute. The two guest Labs watched in muted horror, their tales stiff, while a visiting vizsla went berserk with anticipation. Andrea Arden, a professional dog trainer who will be conducting the classes, said any able-bodied dog can learn in a few months. Six group lessons cost $300.

Doggy Village is a vastly expanded version of the Zucherts’ Biscuits and Bath Gym at 1535 First Avenue and the Biscuits and Bath boutique, a much smaller operation focused on grooming at 255 East 74th Street. But it was Ms. Zuchert’s son John who started the ball rolling in 1990 with a dog-walking business he ran after graduating from high school. ”I was modeling and acting at the time and kind of neurotic about my dog,” Mr. Ziegler, 29, said. One day he tailed the dog walker to see if she would go to Central Park, where she was supposed to go. (”Don’t you ever follow your dog walker?” he asked.) Instead, she took his dog into a nearby building. ”I knew I could do much better than that,” Mr. Ziegler said. Last year, Biscuits and Bath Gym listed 800 paying members.

Part of the business is a nonprofit rescue fund. Stray dogs and cats on death row at the Center for Animal Control and Care will be brought in monthly for visits and cleaned up in the hopes of finding the animals homes. ”You go into the shelters and the animals are terrified and running around,” Mr. Ziegler said. ”Who’s going to take these dirty cyclones? Here, they’ll look clean and smell good. It’ll give them a chance to meet someone who really wants them.”

There were several homeless dogs at the opening party on Wednesday. A television crew milled around the cafe’s gazebo in anticipation of a ”wedding” to be staged between two former strays, Max and Cinder. The bitch wore an outfit donated by Vera Wang. Bruce Hammer, an onlooker who keeps his dog on Long Island, appeared touched. ”I foresee not just dogs getting married,” he said, ”but people getting married who meet while watching their dogs right here.” Unmoved, the two Labs yanked their leashes and headed for the door.

A Cab For Your Lab

By David Serchuk     See full size image

Owner David Lang started Pet Chauffeur four years ago with one goal: to create a recession-proof business.

At the time, Lang delivered prescription pet food for high-end veterinarians. The vets told Lang their clients lacked transport for their animals around Manhattan. Lang was surprised. “I didn’t even know there was a problem with it,” he said, “because I didn’t live in Manhattan.”

Lang realized that no matter the economy, people spend money on their pets. Then he took a closer look at his clientele and realized their problem: Few city pet owners drive and fewer cabs take Labrador retrievers.

For Lang, it made sense. If it’s hard for you to get a cab, try getting one for you and a rottweiler. Not to mention that most cab drivers won’t take any animals becuase the animals might “do business” in the car, he said.

Also, many cabbies have issues with pooch passengers.

“If you ask them, they’ll say dogs are dirty, and we will not put dogs in our car,” he said, adding, “I love it that they hate them.”

In just four years, Pet Chauffeur has gone from one van to 11, and the company’s 20 employees ferry from 20 to 40 people and pets daily.

Their orange vans carry animals either in crates or roaming in the back. Animals can also go with or without their owner.

Business has grown steadily. Lang said the company had $480,000 in total sales in 2002, up 20 percent from 2001.

Pet Chauffeur charges $25 for a trip of one to 40 Manhattan blocks, $30 for 40 to 80 blocks and $35 for 80 to 120 blocks.

One reason for the company’s good health, Lang noted, is that his clients are among the wealthiest New Yorkers. Robert De Niro and his Burmese mountain dog are regulars. Janeane Garofalo, Sean “P.Diddy” Combs and Janet Jackson also use the company.

Non-celebs use it, too. Bruno Lauder and his large poodle, Indi, use Pet Chauffeur to ferry them from his Manhattan home to his Queens business daily.

Last year, Lauder spent $12,000 with the company. Lauder uses Pet Chauffeur because Indi gets car sick, and the company’s drivers are trained to drive smoothly. “David spends a lot of time explaining to them that they cannot be race drivers when you drive animals around,” Lauder said.

While 90 percent of Lang’s business is dog owners, he will transport any animal. A giant bearded dragon lizard was a customer – in a crate the size of a coffin – as were a pair of chimpanzees.

Now Lang wants to expand. Last summer, the firm did long-distance pet-relocation drives on a trial basis, with a pair of bulldogs going to L.A. for $6,100

Pet Chauffeur also has gotten into international animal shipping. After September 11, this has become tougher since airlines investigate every package.

The company does all the paperwork and even books the tickets for its customers. This might seem excessive, but as Lang knows, some pet owners will do anything for their pets. Or at least pay someone else to.

Driving Spot Around Town

By Adam Pincus

David Lang is the owner of a pet transportation service and he does not stop moving. In his Long Island City office, he is taking calls on his cell phone or giving orders while scrutinizing the drivers’ schedules laid out in marker over a wall.
“I love it. It keeps you going. It is quick-paced,” he said.

Lang, 38, runs Pet Chauffeur Ltd., located at 36-03 13th St. in Long Island City, which has been helping animal owners transport their furry loved ones about the city and beyond for some seven years now.

His business, one of a handful in the city that offer transportation services for animals, sprang up because pet owners have found it difficult to hail a cab if the driver sees that a dog or other animal is going to be sitting in the back seat.

He got the idea for the service after delivering medicine and food from veterinarians to pet owners and getting requests from the vets to bring the animals back to the clients. He was also inspired by an uncle who made a small fortune in the pet food business in New Jersey.

He is looking to grow the business, but wants to be sure he is ready for the growth.

“I have vehicles that I am not satisfied with,” he said. “And in New York people give you one chance. I want to make sure I am ready for this.”

His business has expanded to a full-service pet supply service, from food and toys, which are available online, to boarding. He even organizes the shipping of dogs, cats, birds and reptiles. The first floor is packed with shelving for food that the company sells online.

“We are hoping to move out and hold it all in a bigger warehouse,” he said. The current building will then be converted to house more animals. “We are looking to make the whole building a kennel,” with space for 50 to 70 animals.

He now has a fleet of seven vans providing about 60 rides on a given day. On a recent day, most of the rides were in Manhattan, but he said they do frequent runs to the Queens airports.

“We go to Florida quite often. Also California, Virginia,” he said, adding that things get crazy during the Westminster Kennel Club dog show. The company has had a number of interesting passengers.

“We took chimpanzees. They were for a commercial. From JFK to a hotel in Manhattan,” he said.

Although many customers use his service to travel to the vet, other use it to make appointments at doggie spas or even doggie parties.

He said he provides some services that other carriers refuse, including transporting animals on stretchers.

The prices for the transportation service start at $27.50 for the first 40 blocks, but there are no extra charges for the owner. The standard charges rise as high as $165 for picking up a pet at Kennedy Airport.

They house as many as 20 dogs and other animals at their Queens location at any one time.

Behind the three-story house – where he lives with his wife Val, as well as a rottweiler, two cats and some fish – is a dog run with dog houses, toys fenced in with a wall of cartoon paintings of famous hounds such as Pluto and Spike from Tom and Jerry fame, and felines such as Garfield and the Cat in the Hat.

The prices for five days of boarding start at $140 for a small dog and rise to $250 for a 74-pound dog for the same time period. More information can be found on the Web site at www.petride.com.