SENIORS TRAVEL WITH PETSSep 4th, 2012 | By James E Becker | Category: Senior Travel
Pets Are Family Members
Many people consider their animal companions to be part of the family, so it’s no surprise that senior travelers want to take their furry friends along with them on vacations. Animals make journeys with their senior guardians within the U.S. every year. Vacation packages are being designed around animals and their guardians, and sales of items such as canine backpacks have jumped 30 percent. It can be difficult to leave a pet at home when you are going on a vacation or even a short trip.
Before you set out with your pet as a traveling companion, take time to determine whether your animal friend is a good candidate for pet travel. Many pets, especially dogs, enjoy traveling and would much rather go along for the ride than be separated from you while you are away, but some animals don’t handle pet travel due to health issues, temperament, or their reaction to the stress that accompanies changes in their routine.
Motels and hotels increasingly allow dogs, hoping to cash in on the 39 % of US households that have one.
Pet-Friendly Hotel Chains
The most recent copy of Sunset Magazine (Sept. 2012, pp. 25-28) featured an article on Canine-Loving Coastal Towns from San Diego all the way to Seattle. Loreen Mooney calls her article “Dogs Rule!”, stating that the 9 beach towns she highlights “treat pets like VIPs.”
AAA PetBook is the complete planning guide for senior travelers who embrace pets as part of the experience. Updated annually, the guide features more than 14,000 AAA Approved and Diamond Rated hotels, campgrounds and attractions that welcome four-footed travelers. Also includes emergency clinics and dog parks. You can purchase a good used copy at Amazon and save some money for dog treats.
Dogfriendly.com has a nice listing of hotel, city, dining, beaches, camping and other guides. If you are on the east coast, there is a special pet travel guide just for you. Dogfriendly.com has a complete United States and Canada Dog Travel Guide.
Seniors, Treat Your Dog To Some Healthy Treats
When I started this blog, my wife, Jeannine, asked if I would share her story, which I am delighted to do. Jeannine was stepping into her senior years at 60, when our youngest daughter, Karen, an alternative veterinarian, asked her mother to make a dog treat for her personal pets and for her clients, stating that there were no truly healthy treats on the market. Karen’s parameters were really quite simple: beef liver. She wanted no carbs, no fillers, only a single protein treat. My wife worked in our kitchen for many months developing this treat and finally, one day, sent it to our daughter. She loved it, her pets loved it, her clients loved it and began asking to sell it in their pet boutiques. My wife’s ‘senior business’ was born. (Senior Editor’s Note: Jeannine is my sister, and I am totally-out-of-this-world proud of her!)
Today our son, John, is manufacturing Dr. Becker’s Bites, distributing them across the country and online. You can meet our youngest daughter, Karen, who today is Dr. Joseph Mercola’s online veterinarian. And let me finish introducing my family to you… Ann, our eldest daughter, lives near us with her husband and three of our precious 11 grandchildren. So there you have my wife’s senior story and a brief picture of my family. Thanks for letting me share it with you. jeb