Article Submission Guidelines


Unsolicited Articles:

  • For submissions (for other than reader-submitted “Saving Lives in the City” or “Saying Good-bye” stories), first query the editor-in-chief at with a short synopsis of your idea. You may also contact the editor-in-chief to query about the magazine’s writing needs (see third bullet below). In both cases, please include a writing sample.
  • For reader-submitted “Saving Lives in the City/Rescue” or “Saying Goodbye” stories, refer to Submissions Guidelines.
  • Pets in the City is regularly looking for filler material that isn’t time sensitive : articles on breed profiles, profiles of local rescue organizations, training how-to’s, seasonal tips, and informational guide/tips on exotics.

All Articles:

  • Informative articles are preferred over first-person stories.
  • The word count range is 500-700 words, unless specific permission is granted by the editor to go under or over.
  • If possible, please include high quality, 300 dpi photographs to accompany the article/story.
  • Accepted articles and stories will be edited to meet editorial standards, including the PICM Style Sheete.



  • Unless you are a recognized expert in subject matter being discussed (e.g., a veterinarian discussing animal health issues), include input from professional, authoritative figures in the given field.
  • Do not use another writer as a source unless he or she is considered an expert in the field.
  • At the end of the article, include a list of all sources on a separate page. Include at least 5 sources. Sources assure the editor you have done your homework and allow for follow up/fact checking.
  • Following journalistic standards, the bibliography will not be included in the article.  Nor will sources be included as “reader resources.” They are solely for the editor’s benefit.


  • Write in active voice. If you are not familiar with this concept, please research active versus passive voice.
  • Avoid weak verbs, especially forms of “to be” (is, are, am, was, were, will be) that often coincide with passive voice!
  • Use present tense for quote attributions: “says,” not “said.”
  • Capitalize breed names.
  • Use serial commas in a list.
  • Refer to an animal as “she” unless you’re referring to a specific individual, when it can then be referred to as “he” or “she.”


  • Edit your work heavily for conciseness. Read your work out loud to “hear” empty phrases and repetition. Use the active voice, imperative verbs, modifying words and phrases, the possessive apostrophe, and single-word transitions to reduce wordiness.
  • “Show” or support key points through examples and quotations, rather than simply “telling” the reader.
  • Have questions about grammar? Refer to The Chicago Manual of Style. Questions about style? Refer to Associated Press (AP) Style Guide.
  • Please make sure your manuscript is properly proofed and edited prior to submission. Have another person review it for a second set of eyes.

Disclaimer: PICM reserves the right to edit, alter, or modify the submitted article to the extent in which we deem necessary.


  • Use Times Roman 12 pt font.
  • In the top left corner, put your:Real Name (NOT your pen name)
    City, State, Zip, etc.
    Website (including blog sites)
  • Include the word count in the upper right corner.
  • Four lines down, center the title in ALL CAPS. On the next line, type “by”. On the line after, type the name to be used in the publication for the byline (real name or pen name):


  • Two lines down, begin your article/story.
  • Double space throughout.
  • Begin each paragraph with a 5-space or half-inch indent.
  • On the second and any subsequent pages of the submission, create a header and include your REAL LAST NAME, hyphen, and one or two keywords from your title on the right hand side of the page. Also include the page number:

LAST – Title, 2

  • DO NOT put a header on the title page, only on subsequent pages.


  • We generally limit bios to those deemed experts in their field. If you wish to include a bio (to be included at publisher’s discretion), insert at end of article.
  • Present bio in third person (e.g., “so and so does this,” NOT “I do this”) and include your credentials and the name of your organization, if appropriate (e.g., name of veterinary clinic).
  • Do not include contact information, such as websites, phone numbers, or addresses (readers can always find you via an internet search).
  • Limit bio to 50 words and italicize the text.


  • Attach Word document to an email.
  • Address submission to
  • In the Subject line, type “SUBMISSION: [Article/Story Title]_XX Word Count.”


  • Deadlines are the 10th of each month, for inclusion in the following month’s issue.
  • If the article is submitted after the 10th, its publication may be postponed to a later month.

Submission example

Sources example