As consumers today expect more and more from their accommodation when staying away from home, so more and more hotels, guest houses and bed and breakfast venues will offer dog-friendly accommodation, allowing you to bring your own dog with you when you go to stay. We have covered the basics of this within this article, along with a couple of links to visit to find dog-friendly hotels in the area you are planning to visit.
However, don’t rush into booking a hotel that claims to be dog-friendly without knowing all of the facts: Dog friendly means different things to different people, and it is worth learning more about some of the common caveats that are placed on allowing you to take your dog to a hotel, so that you can check the restrictions before you book in. Read on to find out more about some common caveats attached to dog-friendly hotel rules.
First of all, it is important to note that most hotels will add a charge for you taking your dog with you, whether this be a clear fee either per night or for the whole stay, or if the added cost is factored into the price of the room. Many hotels will also ask you for a damage deposit when you check in, which may not always be mentioned ahead of time.
Most hotels too will not allow you to check in with lots of dogs; some hotels will have a rule on just one dog per room, or that you need to speak to them first about boarding with more than one dog. Again, find out about this first, and ensure that you clarify if any added fees are charged per dog or per room.
British law is very black and white when it comes to banned breeds, and there are just four breeds that are not permitted to be owned within the UK. However, hotels and other forms of accommodation can realistically place any restrictions that they wish on allowing your dog to stay, and a small number of hotels may actually have rules forbidding certain breeds from staying, due to the hotel owner’s perceptions of said breeds, or past experience with them.
While this is not really fair, it is worth checking in advance to avoid problems on arrival.
Some hotels too will only offer to board dogs under a certain size, which may be due to the size of the rooms, or the perceived problems that boarding larger dogs can cause. Find out before booking in, and ask the hotel to clarify for certain whether or not your own dog will be accepted.
Most hotels and other forms of accommodation will have restrictions on room cleaning when a dog is in residence, for the protection of their staff. Many hotels will advise you that your room will not be cleaned during your stay, or ask that if you wish to have your room cleaned, you arrange a time for this when you and your dog will be out for the duration.
It is of course entirely possible that dog-friendly hotels will have other dogs in residence, perhaps owned by other guests, or living at the hotel with the owners or staff. This means that before you book in, you should ensure that your dog is well behaved and trustworthy with others, and will not cause friction between you and other guests or owners.
Your hotel will almost certainly have a caveat in place that your stay will be terminated if your dog causes a disturbance to other guests, and a dog that barks constantly or makes a lot of noise will definitely disturb others! If your dog is very noisy or not happy being left alone, you may have to manage this accordingly.
Many hotels will have a rule that your dog cannot be left in the room unsupervised, either at any time, or other than for short periods of time while you possibly go for a meal. Find out about this before time, and follow any rules. Some hotels will allow you to leave your dog alone providing that you tell reception when you go out and come back, or they may have contacts with dog sitters and other services that may be able to help you with this, so if you do need to leave your dog alone during your stay, find out the rules, and the options available to you first.
This rule is partially to avoid disturbing other guests, and also due to health and safety reasons; for instance, if there was a fire in the hotel when you were out, who would know that your dog was there alone, and be willing to go and recover them?
Dog friendly hotels do not always permit dogs in public areas, and in some cases, will forbid them from being allowed on the beds or the furniture within your room. Taking some clean sheets, blankets and bedding of your own that can be used on the hotel’s furniture can help with this, and avoid further charges for cleaning being made.
Your dog should be treated for fleas and not carrying a flea infestation when you check in! This is simply good manners, and you should bear in mind that if your dog brings fleas into the hotel or the room, you will likely have to pay a supplement for the hotel to resolve this.
Finally, don’t assume that just because a hotel allows canine guests that the hotel will be in an area that is very dog-friendly. Even city centre hotels today commonly accept dogs, and while this may be convenient for you, it may mean that you will have to travel some distance to get to a suitable place to walk your dog, or to allow them to do their business. Again, check with the hotel first.