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For many dog owners, dogs have almost, if not already, taken the place of kids in our lives. In fact, as discovered by the American Veterinary Medical Association, the percentage of families with pets in the US is actually double that of those with children. We love pampering our pets, bragging about them, and even looking forward to bonding with them every single day. In addition, when we think about traveling somewhere, we often reject the idea of leaving our adorable furballs behind simply because everything isn’t just as fun and meaningful without them.
Top Dog-Friendly Vacation Destinations
Although not all exciting venues are ideal for pets, such as art museums and cruise ships, worry not for there are loads of other vacation spots that can still offer us and our four-legged best friends great places to retreat and wonderful new experiences to relish.
· Resort pampering. While cat-friendly resorts and spas provide accommodations that include scratching posts, litter boxes, customized pet beds, and room-service menus, those that cater to pooches tend to offer the same types of amenities only with a slightly more demanding program of activities. Canoeing, trailing, and other thrilling tour packages with in-room massage services are provided; not to mention the dog-friendly room-service menus as well as fenced play areas and dog-sitting services.
· Big city getaways. Big cities in the US are some of the friendliest travel locations for dogs nowadays. Countless luxury hotels in big cities don’t simply accept pets, some also have special programs for them such as bathrobes, massages, canine cocktail hours, and even training sessions. According to a survey in 2006, the following are the top-rated cities with the most pet-friendly hotels: Houston, Texas; San Antonio, Texas; Austin, Texas; Albuquerque, N.M.; Phoenix, Ariz.; Dallas, Texas; New York, N.Y.; Orlando, Fla.; Nashville, Tenn.; and Tucson, Ariz.
· Taking the plunge. Whether you’re off to beat the summer heat or to simply marvel at the ocean’s magnificence, sea and lakeside vacations are an awesome option when joined by the family dog. Michigan and Minnesota have great lakes and wide shorelines to offer you and Fido. Water activities like boating, shoreline fishing, river trails for canoes and kayaks, and motor boating are just a few of their lures. California, Florida, and other seaside states have lots of dog-friendly beaches to offer.
· Fun vineyard stopovers and more. Although not particularly dog-centered, some spots are just plain Fido-friendly. A number of beautiful vineyards in Virginia, California, Michigan, Missouri, Oregon, and Florida welcome dogs and even offer first-class wines with such dog-centric names as Play Dead and Merlot Over. Aside from that, most major theme parks keep your dog in mind, allowing you to board your pooch at the park as you spend the day thrillseeking. Numerous exercise areas, pet recreations, and pet-sitting services are available in most of these locations.
Dog shows, agility training classes, road trip, public land adventures, camping excursions, and hiking into the wild are some of the other vacation adventures that you can do with Fido.
When planning a vacation with your pup, just think about the things you both love to do together, and kick them up a notch! Love going for walks? Find a dog friendly place to hike with your pet. Love swimming with your dog? Take a beachside vacation and let him experience the waves. Does your dog love to ride in the car? Take him on an extended road trip or dog park tour!
Have you taken your dog along on a family vacation? Tell us about it!