Vacation, Umbrella Drinks and Edie?


Love them!

Need them!

A time to relax, rejuvenate, reconnect with spouse and family.

But what about our furfamily?  How do we go on vacation, or even an overnight getaway when we have pets that rely on us?

This is the conundrum I am currently faced with.

The last time we spent a night – yes, 1 whole night away, was 5 years ago, before that, don’t even ask!  My husband and I were given an overnight stay at a hotel in Niagara Falls, a casino no less, and we thought it would be great fun!

We where fortunate to have my mother-in-law offer to stay with our then underage boys, and care for our dog at the time and 2 cats.

Times have changed since then, people get older, children grow up, have their own lives and schedules and the decision to go on vacation has given us a new set of issues.

Who will take care of the animals if we go away?

Although we get along with our neighbours, they have no pets of their own and would not be comfortable caring for ours.

Some people opt for daycare/boarding for their dogs, but since Edie has never experienced this environment we felt this wasn’t an option for our first time away.

So what are our options?

Do we stay at home and enjoy our garden?


Do we go on day trips, always checking our watches, making sure we are not gone too long so Edie isn’t left without a “bathroom break”?


Do we book a vacation that allows us to include Edie!


As much as it would be a lovely thought to spend a week or 2 lounging on a beach, being pampered, sipping on drinks with umbrellas in them, I would be just as pleased, after such a long time without a vacation, to go somewhere local, even though there may not be a beach to lounge on, we can still be pampered, have a drink with an umbrella in it, and get that all important break from the everyday.

So my mission has begun, to see if such a place exists in Ontario, one where I can relax with my husband, include Edie, and not have the worry of wondering if she’s alright and being cared for.

I would love to hear back from other pet parents.

How did you deal with pets and vacations?

Where did you go?

How was your experience?

Would you do it again?

What can I expect and what do I  look out for when booking a pet friendly resort/get away?



Author: Kelly Harding

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  1. We often take trips that allow us to take our pets along (dog and 2 cats). These trips mostly involve staying with family, which I feel is somewhat a burden on them at times. I mean, people love animals, but they don’t always love having your animals stay with them for a week.

    So … when it just doesn’t work to take them along, we board them. Sure, I worry a little, but it is a nice break to have some time away from the animals. People need a break from their kids sometimes (so I hear). I do appreciate time away from my animals.

    That being said, I would love to find a nice resort that allows dogs. I’m sure there are many in my area (San Diego).

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  2. Hello! I am the lucky house slave/Mom to AnnieBBarks .I’ve taken her with me on vacation a few times and it has been great! Probably the easiest is when my Step Dad and I rent a pet friendly cottage at the beach for a week every fall. We just take her bed/bowls/food, etc and it’s a very similar environment to being at home-just in a prettier area.

    Twice I have taken Annie to pet-friendly resorts. One was amazing-they had a restaurant that even cooked special doggy meals, which they would bring to your room! the room included bowls, towels for muddy paws, poo bags, and some other essentials. The grounds had acres of hiking trails and lots of poo bag dispensers and receptacles. The other place was nice, but not as over the top accomodating. Some places will require your dog be crated if you leave them alone in room. Annie has never used a crate and would probably bark her head off if I put her in one, but she’s not destructive at all, so I have asked for and gotten exemptions. Most places will probably charge a small pet fee. Most places should have an areas nearby for walkies and bathroom breaks.

    I say go for it!

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    • What you’re describing about these pet-friendly resorts sounds great! This sound exactly what we would be looking for. Edie is not destructive either, but she is used to being crated and sees it as her bed/den, so I don’t think she would have a problem with it. I should get in touch with you to find out the names of these resorts. Thank you for the info!

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  3. It is a difficult thing to figure out. We have done many of the choices you mentioned. We have hired a house sitter, this option we think works best. The furkids are in their home with their routine, and safe. We have taken them with us, that poses the problem of, 1. can’t leave them alone in the room unless they are crated. 2. can’t leave them (and wouldn’t anyway) in a car alone. 3. it’s difficult to get them to do their regular bathroom routine 4. you can’t take them in everywhere you end up wanting to go.
    For the above mentioned reasons, that’s why we opt for the house sitter, and they love her 🙂

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    • If I decide not to take Edie with us, I’m liking the idea of a house sitter and keeping her in her own environment. Now the challenge of finding one!

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  4. We are going to try and take our dogs camping with us next month. When hubby and I went to Jamaica, the eldest was home and able to look after the dogs. Years ago, when we had Cocoa and our other beagle Sheba, we tried a few kennels, but basically no matter how nice they say they are, the dogs are not treated well. A number of times when we picked the dogs up, they smelt like they had slept in their own urine. I won’t use a kennel ever again.

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    • Thanks for the input Catherine, it’s definitely something to take into consideration.

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