Hit the road with your four-legged pals — Photo courtesy of E+ / Gang Zhou
Think travel is only for the two-legged? Think again.
From hotels offering free stays for pets and helpful blogs offering useful travel tips and packing lists for four-legged travelers, to popular attractions with air-conditioned kennels and onsite pet sitters at hotels, traveling with your pet has never been easier.
From popular hotel chains to independent boutiques hotels, it’s easy to find lodging that offers accommodations for pets at all price points.
Room service meals for your pet? Check. Playgrounds designed especially for dogs? You bet. Check-in welcome bags of chew toys, comfy beds and dishes are standard at some resorts, and in-room grooming can often be arranged. Dog-friendly beaches, pet boutique shopping and dining in popular travel destinations are big, too.
And pet travel is not just for cats and dogs. Some properties now welcome a variety of pets of all sizes. Just call before making your booking – always a good practice, as pet policies and facilities can vary by location.
Red Roof Inn Plus
Across the United States, The Red Roof Inn Plus offers pets free overnight stays. Their doggy blog, written by mascot Mac, offers a comprehensive and printable pet packing checklist to rival your own, as well as a list of dos and don’ts when traveling with your pet. Dogs are not supposed to be left alone in the room, however, and taking your pup for a walk while cleaning staff are present is advised. They also accept cats.
In true pet-positive spirit, Mac’s blog features a “Donate” button, and the “Mac Gives Back” program supports a different community cause for pets in need every month. Animal lovers are invited to share the love on social media by posting with #MacGivesBack. They’re also asked to suggest local pet-related causes by sending a message through the “RedRoofLuvsPets” Facebook page.
Eden Roc Hotel Miami Beach
Lucy at Eden Roc Miami Beach, Florida — Photo courtesy of Sherel Purcell
For pampered pets who want to be right on the beach, the famous Eden Roc provides a doggy bag of high-end amenities. That includes a dog bed, dog dishes and chew toys for up to two dogs with updated vaccination records and a $150.00 fee per stay.
Nationwide, Loews Hotels encourages guests to bring their pets along (maximum two per room) as part of their “Skip the cat-sitter or dog kennel” service, where they’ll be welcomed at check-in with treats, bowls and placemats.
The hotel can also provide pet beds, toys and, especially for cats, litter boxes and scratch posts for those who like to travel light. Guests will also be presented with a “Pet-in-Room” sign for your door to alert staff.
Additional pet perks include room service gourmet meals for both cats and dogs specially developed by hotel executive chefs, leashes, collars, litter scoopers and pick-up bags. You’ll also receive dog-walking maps with suggested routes and recommendations for local parks and pet-friendly cafes and restaurants, as well as listings of top pet-walking and sitting services available.
Proof of up-to-date pet vaccinations are required. It’s best to check with the specific hotel regarding fees for extra cleaning and other pet policies before departure. Loews Miami Beach, for example, welcomes up to two pets of any size for $50.00 per stay.
Windemere Inn by the Sea, Melbourne
Pups headed to the beach at the Windemere Inn By the Sea — Photo courtesy of Sherel Purcell
A beautiful beachside property, the laid-back Windemere Inn By the Sea at Melbourne, accepts pets for an extra charge.
The Atlantic Hotel and Spa, Fort Lauderdale
Further north, The Atlantic Hotel and Spa sitting on Fort Lauderdale Beach offers fully equipped kitchen suites, including a two-burner stove, microwave and fridge for those pets who prefer homemade food while traveling. Easygoing dogs under 60 pounds that are enrolled in the VID (Very Important Dog) program get a doggy bag of goodies for a $150.00 cleaning fee per dog, per visit.
TradeWinds Island Grand Resort, St. Pete Beach
Doggy playground at TradeWinds Island Grand Resort, St. Pete Beach, Florida — Photo courtesy of Sherel Purcell
If you’re traveling with exotic pets such as birds, ferrets, monkeys or dogs up to 80 pounds, consider the “4-paw” TradeWinds Island Grand on St. Pete Beach. Here, two pets can stay for $30.00 per night in one of 48 pet-friendly suites. The concierge has Information on nearby pet grooming, sitting and veterinarians.
Dogs love the leash-free Pet Play Zone with beachside hammocks, a doggy drinking fountain, fire hydrants and a dog wash area. A dog walk is set along Island Grand’s waterways and beachfront dunes, and a dog-friendly beach and paw playground is 10 minutes away at Fort De Soto.
Room service is available to pets through the Paw Court Bistro, and the Doggie Accessory Center contains toys, leashes and dog bowls on loan, accessible via your room key.
Urbanica, Miami Beach
The boutique hotel, Urbanica has two locations in South Beach and invites dogs under 22 pounds to stay in select room categories for $40.00 per dog, per night. Emotional support animals are considered pets and are charged accordingly.
To ensure a good time is had by all, be sure to sign and return the pet agreements, pack proof of current vaccinations and check specific requirements of all properties on your list before your trip.