Last weekend our rescue pit-mixes Smiley and Pablo (Smiblo) had their first experience staying at a hotel. I love our boys but I hate how much they limit us from traveling, so I wanted to give it a go. I am not going to lie, having dogs in a hotel was stressful but worth it and saved us a lot of money.
Before we moved to the USA, Isaac and I traveled all the time. Living in China made it cheap and affordable to explore South-East Asia. Moving to New York and then to Rhode Island made it harder. On top of that, we adopted two furry monsters from the Brooklyn ACC through Pound Hounds Resq.
Since then, we have limited our travels to day trips, leaving them in doggy day care or hiring a sitter. For one longer trip we paid almost $1,000 for someone to come stay at our place and watch Smiley for 12 days. It was worth the money but it was also the cost of our flights. We can’t always afford to spend so much.
For our upcoming trip we are choosing to board our boys. They get into tussles and it’s safer for them and our house to keep them in a controlled environment. The going price for having two dogs in boarding is $50-80 per night in our area. So we’re looking at around $600 for a week-long trip.
Dogs in a Hotel: The Marriott
Last weekend we were planning on going to New York for the day and have someone come walk the boys. Driving there and back in a day is not convenient but we had done it beforer. That’s when I discovered a GroupOn for a hotel in the Marriott family, Aloft Long Island City-Manhattan View.
The Marriott is almost always dog friendly. Shockingly, this hotel only charged $89 (+ fees) per night with no extra fees for pets. First of all, this is incredibly cheap for New York City, especially considering the view. Secondly, this is only $19 more per night than just boarding the dogs at our local doggy care!
So, for a total of $230, we booked two nights at this fancy sounding hotel. The instructions said to call if you had a pet, which we did. They didn’t bat an eyelash when we mentioned our two 75 pound (35 kg) monsters. And so, we were packed and on our way to the city five hours after booking.
The dogs were surprisingly well-behaved at arrival and the receptionist swooned over them. We gave them our number and begged them to let us know if anyone complained in case they barked. She took it but reassured us that they are very accommodating to dogs. She added that they wouldn’t kick us out even if they decided to bark at the moon all night… Which they did.
After living in a town, the noises of the city and hotels slipped our minds a little. The first night was full of barks at all the strange noises that the dogs just weren’t used to. No amount of shushing or treat bribing helped. Smiblo woke us up every few hours because of the elevator ding. The second night, however, they were completely fine. Miraculously there were zero complains from other guests or staff.
We are paranoid dog owners so we came well-prepared with our nanny cams. Unfortunately, the WiFi network didn’t allow us to set them up so we had no way to spy on then. While we were out, we were worried but had no calls from the hotel and all was fine upon return.
Another challenge that we hadn’t foreseen was taking the dogs out to do their business. It was a hassle to get dressed, take the elevator down and wait for them to go on the street. However, every time we were in the elevator or lobby, Smiblo got a lot of love and attention from everyone they met.
All in all, we had a great time in New York and the dogs didn’t get in our way. We did choose to stay in more than we normally would have, but that was on us. Also, the hotel was truly amazing and accommodating. We signed up to be members and hope to earn points for future stays with Smiblo in tow!
Unlike us humans, Smiblo hated the view. They prefer squirrels and mailmen to bark at. But hey, to each their own!