Pet-friendly Vacation Planning
There’s nothing that says “summer” is like a great vacation, and there is no better companion to have than your pet. Here’s what you need to know to plan a pet-friendly trip for your travel cat or adventure cat.
Traveling with pets is different for all destinations.
Are you ready to handle the paperwork required for your pet to cross borders? What about putting them on a plane to go on a long journey? Have your pets ever been in a car for a long time? If you haven’t done so, you should try some day trips closer to your home.
Pets are not allowed in most national parks, even though they have a lot of nature to explore. Acadia National Park, in Maine, is the notable exception. It has more than 100 miles of hiking trails that are pet-friendly. New York City’s concrete jungle might not seem ideal for a pet-friendly vacation. It’s a dog-friendly destination, with dogs on leashes allowed in Central Park and over 50 dog parks spread throughout the city.
Consider the climate of your plans. The desert may be stunning, but dogs cannot be outdoors in temperatures above 90oF, and cats can’t be outside if the temperature is over 100oF. If you are there in the summer, you must avoid afternoon hikes. Instead, find air-conditioned activities that can be done indoors.
Do your research before you decide on a destination for your pet.
How will you get from A to B? Small pets can board the plane with you. However, many airlines will require that large dogs enter the cargo hold underneath the plane. This can be an incredibly scary (and dangerous) experience. Boats are generally not pet-friendly. This leaves us with road trips.
It is possible to drive with your pet if they are used to the car. When you are road-tripping, it is important to stop more often for rest stops to give your pet time to stretch and go potty. They can watch the world from the window or snuggle up in their dog or cat bed the rest of the time.
We’ve compiled a complete guide to planning the ideal pet-friendly road trip. (Most of these tips also work for cats).
You will find pros and cons for every type of accommodation that you and your dog may choose to stay in during your travels.
Camping is a great way to enjoy nature, and many campgrounds welcome pets on leashes. Never leave your pet unattended during your trip if you decide to camp. Unattended, a tent is not secure enough for a pet, and it is also too small. A camper or RV is even more dangerous. If you are camping with your pet, it’s impossible to sneak away for a trip to the museum.
Airbnb or other vacation rentals where you can stay in an apartment or house will feel most comfortable and familiar to your pet. This means less stress for both them and you. If your pet is well-behaved, it may be comfortable enough to stay alone for short periods. It can be difficult to find pet-friendly rentals, and many of them charge extra fees for your furry friend.
The services offered by pet-friendly hotels vary greatly. Some pet-friendly accommodations are nothing more than regular hotels that let you bring your pet to your room. Some hotels have pet-friendly areas, offer pet-sitting, and even provide pet spa treatments. The constant foot traffic and noise in a hotel may be too much for anxious or territorial pets. They might prefer a more private place to stay.
Enjoying the Food
You can find pet-friendly restaurants in many cities and towns worldwide by quickly searching online! Many restaurants will allow pets to dine on their patios, even if you must exclude most of the more expensive dining options. You’re more likely to find indoor restaurants that allow pets, so plan to order takeout if the weather is bad.
Now that the basics are out of the picture, let’s move on to the fun stuff: pet-friendly activities! Google is your best friend, but there are also a lot of pet-loving bloggers who have already done the work for you. You can find a list of pet-friendly destinations by plugging in the destination and “pet-friendly activities.”
Your pets can enjoy the outdoors by hiking and taking beach days, but that’s not all they offer. You can find guided tours and outdoor sculpture parks that welcome pets +1 depending on your location. Dogs are welcome in many local shops, and you can take your dog to the dog park.
There are many options for planning a vacation with your pet! Some travel agencies offer pet-friendly vacation packages, which include destination research. You and your pet will remember this trip forever, regardless of your plans.