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Dog Hotels

How many hotels are dog friendly? More than you might think! Not too long ago, most hotels were aghast to welcome a furry friend in a room. The reasons were always the same: noise, fur, dander, and tidiness. Boy how times have changed. Many hotels these days have dog-friendly rooms that are specifically for guests who bring their pups with them! This not only saves a trip to daycare, but it also helps the family vacation turn into a whole family vacation!

Things to consider

Even though your hotel (especially the nation-wide, budget hotel La Quinta) may be very dog friendly, that does not mean there aren’t rules. If you plan an all-day excursion and know that your dog barks when there’s noise outside, taking your pup to a hotel and leaving her in a crate all day may not be the best choice for your. A barking dog can be very disturbing for other hotel guests, especially those in close proximity. New noises are scary, and it’s important to consider how your dog reacts to being in a new location prior to taking her on your adventure.


Similarly, if your dog is destructive, at all, it might not be worth risking a trip to a hotel. Most hotels are pretty conservative and charge a cleaning fee for your pet upfront, but any damage to your room could easily cost hundreds if not thousands of dollars very quickly and easily on a damaged bed, door, or furniture. Especially if your pup happens to be a dog that is prone to chewing on baseboards or other kinds of wood, it might make more sense to keep her at home instead of risking what could happen in a hotel. But if it works, the doggy hotel can be a great experience for your pup and your family!

Dog Cafes

Not too many years ago, it was nearly impossible to find a dog-friendly place to eat outside of very small towns and very hip areas. Today, almost everywhere you turn that has any semblance of outdoor seating also has dog-friendly seating. Not only that, but many establishments have dog water bowls, places to hook up leashes, and even treats ready when you bring your pup to eat with you. Some of the most exciting spots even have dog menus, where you can order your pup a healthy (or very unhealthy) treat.

Things to consider

Dog cafes come with a lot of perceived pros...and some cons. While it’s great to say that your restaurant is dog-friendly, what does that mean for your pup? Well, the first thing to consider is that the restaurant owner might not be taking your pup’s best interest in mind when serving him any food. Especially at local places (not national chains who have been sued enough to figure it out), it’s important to be very careful before giving your dog any food.


Speaking of food, it’s very important to consider how aggressive your dog is with food before taking him out to an eating establishment. If your dog has the least bit of food aggression, you don’t want to worry about him taking a bite out of your neighbor’s hamburger, or worse, your neighbor’s finger, just because he isn’t trained yet to manage his food impulse. Lastly, many of these types of establishments are also very kid friendly, meaning you have to be very sure that children running around and being children isn’t going to upset your pup. Dogs and kids are great together except when they aren’t, and adults are very, very protective of their babies and fur-babies alike. It’s important to take into account that there might be other dogs, trained and untrained, as well as children, also trained and untrained, at these eating establishments and how those interactions might impact your pup and your meal. The best dog cafe is the cafe that is cool, calm, and collected and results in your dog having a wonderful meal with you and your family!

Allergies

Allergies

Dogs have allergies! This can become a quick and painful reality when you bring a new pup home from your local rescue. A few common types of dog allergies are: food, skin, and environment, which all come with their own challenges. The most common symptoms are: itchiness, diarrhea, vomiting, itchy eyes, incessant licking, red skin, swelling, sneezing, and hives. These allergies can overlap in dogs and become very scary if not treated and monitored.

Food

Dog food allergies are not super common, but they are very painful for your pup. The result of a dog allergy to food could be vomiting, hives, itchiness, diarrhea, and in severe cases, anaphylaxis. Marketers have made dogs more allergic to food than they actually are, which has led to the rise of dozens of hypoallergenic diets that many dogs are on. There’s a huge difference between an allergy and a sensitivity, which is what anyone who actually has Celiac disease will tell you. Dogs with food sensitivities can present with similar symptoms to dogs with food allergies, albeit usually much less severe and less often. The best way to manage dog allergies and sensitivities to foods is, unfortunately, to experiment with different combinations of proteins, wheats, and dairy products.

Skin

Dogs with skin allergies, called dermatitis, are the most common type of dog allergy. Three main things cause skin allergies: fleas, foods, environments. Fleas are pretty straightforward: a flea bites your dog, your dog has an allergic reaction. The skin can become itchy, red, or enlarged. Food allergies can also cause sensitive, itchy skin, as mentioned above. Environmental allergies are harder. Just like in humans, dogs can be allergic to just about anything, including most commonly dust, pollen, and mold. These are generally seasonal allergies, and result often in a lot of ear scratching and paw licking. Just like humans, there are medications that your veterinarian can prescribe to mitigate the impact of environmental allergies on your pup during specific seasons.

Acute

Sometimes your dog is just allergic to something very specific. It could be a bee. It could be a specific spider bite. It could be any number of things. Generally, dogs can go into anaphylactic shock if they have a severe reaction to a bite, sting, or other acute allergenic. These, if left untreated, can result in death. But, because anaphylactic episodes are super rare in dogs, most of these acute allergic reactions to bites and stings can be mitigated, if not completely removed, with simple antihistamines that you can find over the counter. In the worst case scenario, especially with a large amount of swelling, you should connect with your veterinarian so that she can prescribe a steroid to combat the reaction until a powerful antihistamine kicks in.