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Meet the Long Beach Paletero Selling Ice Cream To Both Dogs and Their Owners

Inside this paletero's ice cream cart, modified with four 14-inch balloon wheels to help push its weight across the sand, one will find a selection of ice cream for dogs, or “Frosty Paws” to be exact.

2:43 PM PDT on August 14, 2023

    Photos: Janette Villafana for L.A. TACO.

    It’s a hot summer day and you’re out enjoying the ocean breeze that Long Beach is beloved for, on L.A. County's only dog beach. At a distance, as you sit on the warm sand enjoying the view of the muted waves crashing one-by-one, you hear the nearby sound of bells ringing. Not church bells, but a paletero, waiting to save you and your furry friends from the blazing sun with his icy treats.

    This puppie pop-pushing paletero, who would prefer not to use his name for privacy reasons, said he has been rolling his cart along the shore of Rosie’s Dog Beach for the past three years. He sells the classic and nostalgic paletas that everyone enjoys, like "Cry Baby" cherry sour ice, and character paletas ranging from Sonic and The Power Puff Girls to Tweety Bird. 

    Also in his ice cream cart, modified with four 14-inch balloon wheels to help push its weight across the sand, is a selection of ice cream for dogs, or “Frosty Paws” to be exact. Asked when he decided to include dog-friendly ice cream in his inventory, he tells L.A. TACO he’s been doing it for some time now.

    “When we lived in San Diego, I used to do the same thing, sell paletas and ice cream for dogs,” he said in Spanish, as four-legged customers dashed around his cart. “We would also sell at a dog beach, so we decided to continue doing it when we moved here.”

    We first heard about the paletero through our LBC-based editor-in-chief. The treats include peanut butter-and-vanilla-flavored ice cream that come in 13 oz. containers, for your pup to enjoy. For dogs that frequent Rosie’s Dog Beach, the paletero needs no introduction, the sound of his bells lures furry customers to him from an inhuman earshot. Some sit patiently next to their parents as they pick and choose their icy treats. 

    “As a street vendor, we’re more used to interacting with people, but it’s nice that here I get to interact with the dogs and their parents,” he said, a bit shy. “Some dogs already know me.”

    He said his busiest days are the weekends, when more people tend to flock to the beach for relaxation or fun. However, he said you can also find him pushing his D.I.Y. ice cream cart from Wednesday through Sunday all along Rosie’s Beach. He accepts cash and electronic payments like Venmo and Zelle. 

    “I'll be here," he wanted us to let Angelenos know, right before attending to a new customer. "Keep coming to Rosie’s Dog Beach and I hope they continue to buy their dogs some ice cream because they like them a lot."

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