It’s a petcation!

Planning a vacation with your furry companions is finally possible with many countries, including ours, offering pet-friendly itineraries and amenities, writes Amrita Das

As an emerging pet-friendly destination, India is trying to make avenues for your canine family.

Most pet parents have a difficult time deciding on whether to go on a holiday with their pets, leave them behind, or cancel the holiday altogether. While travelling in India with pets is yet to catch pace, many international destinations and global hotel groups have opened their doors to pets, whether they are dogs — the most popular pets, or cats, birds, rabbits, horses, or even rare ones like goats.

India

As an emerging pet-friendly destination, India is trying to make avenues for your canine family. Tree of Life Resorts and Spa, Jaipur, is a short 240-km ride from Delhi and welcomes dogs. On the other side of the capital are Emerald Trail in Bhimtal and Den Corbett Resort and Spa, both in Uttarakhand. These resorts have dog-friendly policies, though pets are encouraged to be on the leash in the latter accommodation (owing to its proximity to a national park). Presa di Goa in Calangute, Goa, allows pets at no additional cost. Rococco Resorts in Ashvem also welcome dogs and are happy to customise dietary requirements accordingly.

France

France has been a popular choice for pet parents. Kimpton Hotels, which has properties around the world, including Paris, welcomes pets at no extra cost. With only one rule — “if your pet fits through the door, we’ll welcome them in”— the hotel group allows all species of pets, across weight and sizes, and without any limitation on the number of pets checking-in per room. They also hand out complimentary bags for walking your dogs and customise door hangers to keep everyone aware of a pet guest’s presence. At an extra cost, guests can avail amenities like plush pet-bed in guest rooms, food and mats. In Le Bristol Paris, experiences are more luxurious. All four-legged guests get an exclusive bed, customised mats, silver water bowls filled with Evian and monogrammed cookies with their names.

The Netherlands

Holland buzzes with pet-friendly holiday homes, hotels, coastal resorts and B&Bs. The Hoxton Amsterdam takes it a step further with its Hox Hounds website which has all the necessary information for humans travelling with their furry companions. Basics like beds, extra collar and leash, water bowl are provided at check-in. They also hand out a PAWLY first-aid kit and dog bags. However, they have a limitation of one pet per room, not weighing more than 18 kg. Public transport, parks and cafes and restaurants in Holland are used to pets. Numerous dogs are also seen running alongside their cyclist humans.

Just as you would pack everything your kids need for a trip, do the same for your pet.
Just as you would pack everything your kids need for a trip, do the same for your pet. 

Tasmania

In the northern coast of Tasmania, a 19th-century estate has made travelling with pets an exclusive and personalised experience. Hawley House has crafted experiences for both pet owners and pets — making it a true holiday. They have dog-friendly beaches, bushwalking trails, rooftop outdoor baths and garden explorations. Hawley House welcomes all kinds of pets — dogs, cats, rabbits, horses, ferrets, and even chickens.

Britain

According to a 2008 British Federation of Herpetologists (BFH) report, reptiles and amphibians are most preferred pets in the country, beating the ever popular dogs. Perhaps this is the reason why they welcome a large variety of pets, including horses. Coworth Park in County Berkshire is set in a 240-acre countryside retreat. Here, guests are encouraged to bring their horses and enjoy easy rides or polo matches. Their ‘Ultimate Horse Check-In’ package includes personalised services and amenities for the horse, pampering hood treatment, muscle massage, arrival snacks, and much more. Feel free to walk in England’s Newhaven Fort, Newlyn Art Gallery in Cornwall and the Crich Tramway Museum in Derbyshire with your furry companion. These museums and sites love your pooch as much as you do.

Japan

In Japan, many are opting to own pets rather than rear human children. Hence, more places are becoming pet-friendly. Hoshino Resorts’ KAI Kinugawa in Tochigi Prefecture is a luxury onsen (hot spring) resort. Their Japanese-styled rooms welcome pets and offer pet bowls and towels. Additionally, they have private hot spring baths for you and your canine. In the capital city, pet owners can experience Tokyo Disneyland or DisneySea while their pets enjoy the Pet Club. This service can be availed by visitors with pets 30 minutes before the park opens and they can pick their pets 30 minutes after closing. However, it is recommended to keep all documentation ready, as checking-in can be a tedious process.

Israel

Tel Aviv is one of the most dog-friendly cities in the world. Resident pet owners have access to multiple dog apps for resources and networking. Apart from that, there are 70 dog parks, a television channel and a dog festival — all of which strengthen human-dog bonding. There is no dearth of hotels and restaurants in Tel Aviv for tourists travelling with their four-legged companions. The city has dog beaches where they can be without a leash. There are many self-service dog-washing centres where dogs can be cleaned and groomed at nominal costs.

Happy travelling!

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