How to Find Dog-Friendly Vacation Retreats
Most pet owners don’t enjoy leaving their furry friends behind when they go on a family vacation. After all, aren’t Venkat and Fluffy family members as well? These days, there are ways to take your pets with you by finding a pet-friendly vacation retreat.
One of the first things to do is to do a bit of research ahead of time. You can do a Google search to see which places will accept pets and if they charge extra for doing so. There are several special websites for pet owners that help you search for hotels such as http://www.pet-friendly-hotels.net/ or http://www.pettravel.com/. I found a great site last year, http://www.vacationrentals.com. You can search by state in the US for dog-friendly places to stay. What is great about this site is that they are mostly houses and cabins for rent. So if you like more space and more privacy you are bound to find something you like here.
You run the gauntlet of everything from a hotel that allows you to bring your dog into the hotel and charges you an extra fee but provides nothing else to the really pet-friendly locations that offer food, toys, treats, dog beds and special doggie babysitters.
It all depends on what exactly you want — a place to sleep or a hotel with ways to entertain your dog while you are off doing vacation things that dogs aren’t allowed to attend. You should also double check when making your reservations if dogs are still allowed. The facts online could be outdated, so don’t run the risk of driving all the way to the hotel late at night to find out that Fido isn’t welcome after all.
Most hotels that do allow dogs will want you to obey certain rules such as where your dog can go to the bathroom, when he can be off leash, if he must be shut up in a carrier if you are gone, etc. book your stay. Your dog may also have to show proof of having his shots, and be friendly to other people or be clean and flea free. There may be a statement that you will have to sign that says if anything is torn up or ruined that you must pay for the damages. You should always call ahead to find out exactly what to expect so there will be no surprises.
The bottom line is that these days it is quite possible to take your dog with you when you travel, as long as you do your homework and are prepared.