Tips for Traveling With Pets Plus Seriously Pet Friendly Hotels

tips for traveling with pets

Associated Press

For many pet owners, the idea of a vacation without Fido or Fluffy isn't a vacation at all. But, there are many considerations to take when traveling with pets-from what to pack to where to stay. Here are a few tips and pet friendly hotel chains to make traveling with animals a little easier.

1) Make sure your pet is wearing a collar with up to date contact identification. If you're flying, also label your pet's crate. That way, if your pet gets separated from you, someone can contact you

2) Keep a leash on your pet.

3) Keep a copy of your dog's vaccination records in your car (or carry-on if you're flying.)

4) Make sure to bring water and bowls, as well as treats and baggies for picking up after your
dog. Not all rest stops provide them, and they're unlikely at airports.

5) Try to book nonstop flights to reduce the stress of changing planes on your pet.

6) If your animal is prone to carsickness, pack towels and cleaning supplies

7) Don't let your dog ride with its head out the window. Flying dirt and debris can cause eye or ear infections.

8) If your pet is restless in the car, try popping in a kids' movie or CD for ambient noise.

Then there's the matter of your accommodations after arrival. While there are many pet-friendly hotels to be found, make sure you are clear on your hotel's pet policy before you arrive. Many have restrictions on the size and number of pets allowed in a room, for example, and not all hotels have the same requirements. Also, it doesn't hurt to ask about pet perks-some hotels offer amenities like dog beds, treats, water bowls and even discounts to local dog walkers and groomers.

If you're still looking for a place to stay, websites like,, allow you to search for pet friendly hotels across the U.S. and around the globe.

A great number of national chains do allow pets to say, but some go above and beyond in terms of pet hospitality. Here are a few:

Loews Hotels: According to the company "Loews loves pets," and the chain has some of the most pet friendly hotels going. Upon check-in, pets receive goodies like a pet tag, bowl and treat, and owners get brochures detailing local pet services like vets and groomers. A pet room service menu is even available, as are dog and cat beds, bones, catnip, litter boxes and litter, and pooper scoopers. Be sure to check out Loews' Orlando locations when planning a theme park trip as Disney properties do not allow pets.

Hilton Hotels: Like Loews, Hilton hotels are also very accommodating of your four-legged friend. At Hilton they'll be welcomed with a "creature comforts" package-a travel tote filled with organic treats, bio-degradable waste bags and a travel-sized bottle of cleaner/deodorizer for pet stains. Pet beds, bowls and placemats are also available for your room. And, if you need to see the groomer or find a walking trail, the concierge can help you out with that.

Kimpton Hotels: Kimpton Hotels invites you to bring your pets regardless of "size, weight, kind, or breed." And it's true; they've hosted animals like aardvarks, warthogs, flamingos and lizards to name a few. At this chain, pet packages are available depending on your choice hotel. Four-legged guests at the Hotel Allegro in Chicago, for instance, can enjoy a pet bed, bowls, and a "sWAG" bag containing water, snacks and a leash to keep. A few hotels are home to Kimpton's directors of pet relations-in house fur babies helping to welcome guests and their pets. Their e-mail addresses are available online.

W Hotels: At the W hotels, PAW stands for Pets Are Welcome. The hospitality begins at check in when you'll receive a pet toy, pet treat, pet bag and clean-up baggies. The luxe treatments continue in your room where your pet can enjoy a pet bed, dishes and a special turndown treat. Other necessities like toys, food, wee pads, litter boxes and pet first aid kits are available. There's even hotel staff available to take your pooch out for a walk. Other hotels in the Starwood family are pet friendly too. Check out their websites for more details.

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