There’s more to planning a pet-friendly holiday than booking a rental house with a tiny ‘pets allowed’ icon on the advertisement or a certain box ticked on a website listing. If you’ve found this out the hard way, this will not be news to you (or your ruined holiday!)
We believe taking your pet on your well-deserved break can be as simple as packing some extra socks, but there are a couple of things our expert eyes have picked up on over the years that can make a big difference between truly memorable getaways and those that are memorable for all the wrong reasons.
Luckily, the widespread desire to take your pet on holidays is becoming a much more acceptable idea, and pet-friendly rentals are increasingly being heralded as the next big thing in the domestic holiday market.
But before you go, check out our must-have list of pet-friendly inclusions and see how your booking stacks up…
* A fully fenced yard: Even the most obedient of hounds can be tempted by the wonderful whiff of a sausage sandwich or overly friendly feline across the road when they’re away from home, so choosing a place with an enclosed yard is a must for truly pet-safe holidays.
* Secure balconies and wet areas: Just as a secure yard is a good idea for holiday digs, so too is a big safety tick in areas where there are height or water hazards.
Pools and spas should be fenced, and all balconies or upstairs decks should have secure balustrades that are both dog- and child-proof. Your pet might be well-versed in their own safety at home, but they can easily get disoriented in new places. Be safe rather than sorry!
* Nearby off leash areas: There’s no point allowing pets in your holiday home if you’re right in the middle of a national park. Make sure there are adequate exercise areas, walks, off-leash beaches, and dog parks at your holiday destination to keep the pet happy.
* Inside access: True pet-friendly accommodations don’t insist on keeping pets outside. It’s fair enough to ask you try and keep pet hair off the velour couch, but we think advertising a property as pet-friendly when the little guy can’t legally cross the threshold is splitting hairs. (Pardon the furry pun.)
Having a great time in front of the fire or around the dinner table while Fido looks forlornly through the sliding door isn’t fun for anyone, so check the restrictions on your house or room before you go, and make sure you know if the fur baby is allowed inside or not.
There are plenty more luxurious additions you might come across with the ubiquitous ‘pets allowed’ box ticked… think doggy-sitting, pet pampering, professional pet-minding, and organised social outings for your fur friend. (Pssst, our helpful mobile app is a great spot to start looking for all these little luxuries, too.)
But we think that as long as you start out with these four things, your pet-friendly getaway will be a whole lot of fun for everyone. Humans included!