A Vacation for the Whole Family - Pet Friendly Trips in the USA

What to do with your beloved canine companion while on vacation is always a problem for devoted dog owners. A recent survey in Britain found that the vast majority of British dog owners worry so much about their pets while they’re on vacation that it spoils the experience for them – so much so that many scrap their vacation plans altogether. Most American dog owners would undoubtedly sympathize with this. However, more and more the need for this worry is being eradicated. Pet friendly hotels are springing up everywhere, ensuring that you can take your complete family with you on vacation and not leave your beloved pooch behind. With the added security provided by the LeashLocket, you need not worry about your dog getting into trouble in unfamiliar climes, either! Here are a few of the best options for a vacation with your dog in the USA.

Pooch Pampering

If your dog likes a taste of the high life, you could do worse than to treat them (and yourself!) to a stay at the Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch, Colorado. Here, dogs will be treated to massages and canine haute-cuisine – although many dogs will probably be more interested in the twice-daily runs in the mountains which are also on offer. The San Francisco Fairmont offers dogs the chance to sup upon delectable cable-car shaped cookies and enjoy the delights of a specially adapted doggie mini bar (including rope toys and organic snacks). Should all this gastronomic luxury cause your pet to become a little…windy, aromatic candles are provided to neutralize odors, while dog beds can be infused with scents of cloves, spearmint, and lemongrass through the application of a handy spritzer. If your dog is prone to muscle aches after a long day enjoying themselves, then they can have a relaxing reiki massage at Vermont’s Topnotch Resort - which also allows canine guests to take home their very own water bowl as a memento. If you’re heading to California, however, the Stanford Inn, Mendocino,  is more than worth a visit. Renowned for its canine-inclusivity, this friendly hotel affords dogs a home from home. Many dog-friendly hotels draw the line at eating with your dog – not so the Stanford. This hotel has been pet-friendly since the 1980s, so know exactly how to make dogs feel welcome.

Sea Dogs

The cruise industry is swiftly wising up to the advantages of allowing pets on board ship. Service dogs have long been accepted on cruise lines – but a great many cruise providers around the world are now offering specialized pet services as well. British cruise lines like Cunard are thus far leading the world in pet-cruise provision - perhaps understandable, given the legendary British love of dogs. Some British boats even offer a luxury pooch-pampering package, whereby dogs are treated to massages, long jaunts around the deck, and even their own specialized canine ‘butler’ to attend to their every need. However, increasingly other nations are catching up, and many American cruise lines are also now offering doggy cruises. Due to the nature of maritime travel, most cruise lines do request that dogs travelling with owners are well lead-trained and that owners have reasonable on and off lead control. However, for those with the LeashLocket, this is certainly not a problem!

Quirky Breaks

They don’t get much quirkier than the Dog Bark Park Inn, Idaho. This giant, beagle-shaped accommodation created by chainsaw artist Frances Conklin regularly features in lists of the world’s most unusual hotels. As well as being extremely quirkily shaped, it is well-appointed and very willing to accommodate well-behaved pets (by prior agreement). What better vacation for a committed dog-lover than a hotel shaped like a dog? Alternatively, the Loews Coronado Bay Resort in California comes highly recommended by Travel and Leisure Magazine, who have written enthusiastically about the hotel’s dog-inclusive policy. This even extends to giving dogs the opportunity to catch a few waves alongside their owners – a dog-surfing package includes dog-surfing lessons, a copy of ‘The Dog’s Guide to Surfing’, and a specially adapted canine short board. If your dog is more spiritually minded, however, they can have a psychic reading during their stay at the Hotel Monaco in Portland - which also offers the less metaphysical services of dog walking and sitting. Pets stay for free at Hotel Monaco – a major point in its favor!

A Good Romp

Oregon’s Cannon Beach is a hidden gem for dogs and dog-lovers. A charming little seaside town with an ample beach upon which even the largest hound can let loose, this place is stocked to the brim with pet-friendly restaurants, hotels, and parks. The Ocean Lodge welcomes dogs, and provides baskets, toys, chews and treats to ensure that your pet enjoys their stay. It also has an outdoor dog-shower – handy after a romp over the wet sand! Energetic dogs will also appreciate the opportunities on offer at the West Beach Resort on Orcas Island, Washington. Here, your dogs can run along a dog-friendly beach, play in the Eastsound dog park, and explore the Turtleback Mountain Preserve (although you will need them on a leash for this, the LeashLocket will allow your dog a degree of freedom to explore while you maintain total control should the need arise). Often, outdoor space close to the hotel is an issue for owners taking dogs on vacation. Not so at the luxurious, Japanese-inspired Ten Thousand Waves resort at Santa Fe. The cottages on offer here come equipped with private outdoor areas for dogs to unwind in the evenings – with dog-proof fences to prevent them from visiting other guests! Carmel-By-The-Sea’s Cypress Inn (co-owned by the legendary Doris Day) gives pets the opportunity to partake in a ‘yappy hour’, wherein they can enjoy treats and drinks in the company of their owners (who are similarly plied with comestibles and beverages). The nearby beach is also excellently dog-friendly, meaning that your canine companion is bound to sleep well (on the specially provided dog beds).

Contributed by reader, Emma Renfrew