Now this is a hotel trend we can really get behind! When you check in for a room, what do you tend to expect? Maybe a bottle of water or a few snacks in the mini-bar? A neatly turned-down bed? Sure. But what if your room also came with the ability to take a shelter dog or puppy on walks or local day hikes?
Photo via Fairmont Hotels
A number of hotels are starting to experiment with “canine ambassadors,” loaning guests shelter dogs in order to help both the human and animal stay more active by enjoying runs or walks around town. This has been positively received by many, as travelers who are missing the pets they had to leave at home can enjoy a little furry companionship during their stay.
In 2012, the Humane Society of the United States showed that 62% of American households have pets—and this number is rising every year. That reveals an obvious love of pet presence, so it makes sense that hotels would like to try and provide the same “creature comforts.”
Here are some of the places you can find shelter dogs acting as hotel ambassadors:
- North American Fairmont Hotels – Eight Fairmont hotels are part of this program, with dogs greeting guests as well as going on walks and runs—with some hotels even having a special concierge who handles shelter dog loans.
- Aspen, Colorado – A handful of Aspen-based hotels are getting involved in this initiative, including The Little Nell and the Mountain House Lodge (shuttle service to and from the Aspen Animal Shelter is provided).
- Red Mountain Resort, St. George, Utah – This resort offers a Puppy Pound Hike that matches guests with a puppy or older dog from local shelters for scenic area hikes.
Hadley Schroll, a spokeswoman for FRHI Hotels & Resorts said, “The program results in higher guest satisfaction and more personalized guest experiences, while positioning the hotels as unique and distinctive in their respective destinations.”
We hope this sort of hotel trend continues, not just as a great guest amenity but also as a way to help local shelters gain more exposure and help their un-adopted dogs be more active and socially adapted.
Seth Sachson, the director for Aspen Animal Shelter, specifically noted this, saying: “The outings provide exercise and socialization for the dogs and often lead to successful adoptions.”
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