If your favorite furry friend will be taking a vacation with you and will be spending time in a hotel, here are the dos and don’ts to make your trip as relaxing and enjoyable as possible for everyone involved.
- Do let the hotel know your pet is coming along. It is never a good idea to sneak a dog into a hotel that specifically doesn’t allow pets. This could get you both kicked out of the hotel with a huge fee to pay! Even hotels that are pet-friendly should be notified and you should answer any of their questions honestly. If you claim you are bringing a Dachshund and show up with a St. Bernard, they are not going to be too pleased.
- Do bring the comforts of home. Travel can be stressful for anyone, dogs included. To make the trip more comfortable, bring items such as a bed, toys, a food bowl, or a special blanket. This will keep her occupied and will keep a familiar smell in the new environment.
- Do purchase her normal food and treats. Quickly changing to a different type of food will upset your dog’s stomach, leaving behind a mess and a lot of stress for both the human and dog involved. Save some hassle by bringing a container of food enough to last the entire trip. Or, if that is not an option, check ahead and see if a store nearby carries the food for you to pick up on your way to the hotel!
- Do request a room on the ground floor. This will make it easier to take bathroom breaks and let out some energy on a quick walk. If your dog hates the stairs or is too small to climb them easily, this eliminates the problem. It’s also an issue of safety. Many rooms above ground level have balconies that may not be pet-safe.
- Don’t be alarmed if the hotel charges a pet fee. This is actually quite common and helps the hotel off-set the costs of allowing messier, less behaved animals to stay in their hotel. Try to find out what the fee will be before check-in to avoid confusion.
- Don’t forget to bring your dog’s leash and ID tags! The leash is important for walking and traveling from location to location. The ID tags will make sure your dog can always be connected to you. It is also a smart idea to bring any paperwork related to your dog such as vet papers, adoption papers, or registration papers.
- Don’t leave your dog alone in the room. Many people think that their dog will be fine alone since she is fine alone at home. This is usually not the case. Dogs can be very stressed in a new environment, especially if the person who feeds them has left. If it cannot be avoided, make sure the hotel staff has your contact information in case your dog whines or barks in your absence, and then come back immediately if they do contact you. When taking a dog on vacation, be prepared to take her not only to the hotel but to every location you plan to go.
- Don’t forget to be a good guest! This includes cleaning up after your dog outside and inside, keeping quiet and not disturbing the neighbors, and making sure you follow all other rules related to your pet. This makes the trip safer and easier for you and your dog, and this will make sure you can return next year for your vacation.