Things to Know about Pet-Friendly Hotels
Be My Guest: Things to Know about Pet-Friendly Hotels
If you’re like 85% of the dog owner population, you think of your pup as family (as reported by the American Veterinary Medical Association in 2018). So that means Buster gets birthday and Christmas presents, sleeps on the bed with you, and goes with you when you go on vacation, right? Of course! In 2016, a survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association showed that 37% of pet owners take their dogs, cats, birds, and other furry or feathered family members with them on vacation. But unless you own a camper or are staying with relatives during your vacation, you’re going to have to rely on a pet-friendly hotel when you make your travel arrangements. You should know, though, that while “pet-friendly” seems like a blanket statement that would apply to all hotels that welcome dogs, policies vary greatly from one establishment to the next. While of course up-to-date vaccinations are a typical requirement, other policy details vary. Weight limits, breed type restrictions, and number of pets allowed per family are just a few things you should be aware of when planning your trip. Let’s take a closer look at what you should expect and what you need to know if you’re going to be checking in to a pet-friendly hotel on your next family vacation.
Pet Friendly…or Pet Not-so-Friendly?With 75% of luxury and other types of hotels allowing pets, according to the American Hotel & Lodging Association, you’d think it might be easy to find an accommodation with exactly what you’re looking for. Well, that might not be as simple as you think. Traveling with Mo, Larry, and Curly? Some pet-friendly hotels have a pet maximum; some might allow as many as three, while others might only permit one or two per guest. Is Barney a 100+-pound Akita or Rottweiler? That might be an issue at many locations; most hotels accept pets up to 80 pounds only. And are you planning on everyone going to the continental breakfast at the same time? You can’t if your hotel’s policy does not allow your dog to stay in the room unattended (and in most cases, your dog will not be permitted in food areas, pool areas, or on-site fitness centers). Be aware, too, that some pet-friendly hotels charge a pet fee—usually $20 per night, but this varies and could be as high as $50/night. And of course, you’ll assume responsibility for any damage Suzie might inflict upon your room. Some hotels, too, might restrict certain types of “aggressive breeds”. And if Dixie is a barker? You could be asked to leave the premises if incessant barking or other disruptions affect guests. Of course, sometimes pet-friendly MEANS pet-friendly; for example, Loews Hotels offers food and water bowl place mats and special Loews Loves Pets “Do Not Disturb” signs. Sheraton Hotels & Resorts give your pup the royal treatment, with everything from custom pet beds to a welcome kit with treats and local pet-related info. Check out sites like BringFido.com or PetsWelcome.com to find out which hotels offer pet-friendly services.
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Written by Harrison Howe