Pet-Friendly Vacations for the Summer
Is traveling with your four-legged friend on the agenda this summer? If so, you’ll want to discover some places where pet parents enjoy time with their fur babies without pet restrictions.
This guide to pet-friendly vacations includes top travel destinations along with a handful of vacation tips to ensure an enjoyable time with your pets.
Pet Friendly Summer Vacation Destinations
Check out these pet-friendly locales.
Asheville, North Carolina
“Asheville is a free-spirited place with a special love for furry guests and their families,” says Dodie Stephens, the Explore Asheville Convention and Visitor Bureau’s Director of Communications. “Our Blue Ridge Mountain city blends an outdoorsy vibe with a creative culture of independent businesses and unique accommodations, many of whom get inspired to create special experiences for travelers on four legs.”
For starters, Asheville, aka the “Dog City USA,” boasts the United State’s first official dog welcome center. Upon arrival, your pooch can enjoy some dog-friendly ice cream, free doggy goodie bags and a pooch-friendly bathroom.
While Asheville provides many dog-friendly hotels and cat-friendly hotels, there are a few notable ones.
- The Aloft Hotel has garnered national attention for its unique adoption program. Dogs who are up for adoption lounge in the hotel and interact with guests, where they can be matched with a potential owner.
- The highly rated Abbington Green B&B also shows real pet love. Upon arrival, pet parents are greeted with a welcome letter from the B&B’s host dog, Lady Amber Abbington. There are homemade doggie treats, plush pooch beds and a dog-run on the property. There’s also a charming Wall of Fame with “thank yous” from past canine visitors.
Other Asheville points of interest include the French Broad River, Azalea Park dog parks and the noteworthy American Museum of the House Cat, which features fine cat art dating to the late 1800s.
There’s no shortage of pet-friendly adventures in Austin. Toss a stone in any direction year-round, and you’ll have no trouble finding dog-friendly patios, bars and restaurants.
This city has 12 off-leash dog parks for your dog’s running pleasure. If you and your four-legged friend want to cool off on a hot day, you can go for a swim in “Barking Springs,” or enjoy the great outdoors with creeks, paths and trails.
In the summer months, you can enjoy dog-friendly outdoor festivals, get a drink with your pup by your side at one of Austin’s many bars, or treat your canine companion to some dog treats at one of the many pet boutiques, such as Woof Gang Bakery or Lofty Dog.
San Diego, California
With an average temperature of 72 degrees Fahrenheit, San Diego is a top destination in the U.S. for pet travel and serving as a year-round playground.
“San Diego’s varied terrain can be enjoyed by all, including sand and waves at the local dog beach, hiking through the trails of East County and pet patios at breweries and restaurants,” says Candice Eley, director of communications at the San Diego Tourism Authority.
There are plenty of off-leash parks and adorable pet boutiques to boot.
Whether looking for affordable to luxury accommodations, you’ll find no shortage of dog-friendly hotels and cat-friendly hotels. Some offer special accommodations, such as pet beds, a canine turndown for a nose-to-tail pamper experience, walking services and “yappy hours,” with discounts for both humans and dogs.
Tips for Traveling With Furry Companions
Prior to travel, make sure your pets are in solid health, up to date on essential vaccinations and their current ID tags or microchips are accurate. Before flying with a dog or cat, read up on airline pet policies and dog-friendly airports.
Whether vacationing by way of plane, train or automobile with your four-legged companion, your pet’s comfort is essential. If flying with a dog or cat, an airline-approved pet carrier can keep your dog or cat safe and cozy. To ease the stress and burden of packing for your travels, consider using a travel kit like Solvit’s Pet Travel Organizer Kit, which includes a food storage bag, water bottle and collapsible bowls.
If camping with dogs is part of your travel agenda, do your homework well ahead of your outdoor adventure. Study up on popular campsites to see if they have any rules or restrictions on bringing pets. For instance, some campgrounds only allow small dogs, while others don’t allow pups whatsoever. Check for any pet-restricted areas, such as trails, creeks or ponds.
Pack plenty of essentials, such as food and water, for your adventuring-seeking pup. And if vehicle space is a concern, pack compact items for your pooch, such as PetSafe’s collapsible bowl, ChuckIt’s travel bed and Firstrax’s transportable crate for indoor or outdoor use.
Let’s not forget that getting dirty or wet might be part of your pooch’s rollicking good time. When camping with dogs, a comfy Plush Paws car seat cover will come in handy.
When gearing up for pet travel this summer, there’s no shortage of places to visit and fun-filled activities to enjoy. Whether you’re on a budget or splurge on a luxe trip, yearn for the great outdoors or crave something more leisurely, these pet-friendly vacations will please you and your four-legged family members.
By Jackie Lam
Featured Image: via iStock.com/Kerkez