Tips for your Best Dog Friendly Minnesota Vacation

Ah, sleep, it’s what I live for. That and those soft, chewy treats my mom pulls out of the pantry when I do a trick, after bath time, and simply for being a good boy (which is all the time if you ask me.) I lead a pretty basic life, but that’s how I like it. It consists of eating (my favorite), sleeping (my second favorite), and belly rubs (there are never enough.) Home is where my tail-wagging heart is, but put me in a car going literally anywhere, and I’m elated. Put me in a car going on vacation? Dog lottery won.

Because I’m such a good boy (read above) my family always finds pet-friendly Minnesota resorts for our vacations, and it makes me feel like the pick of the litter. Whether you have an adolescent pooch, or a new kitty in your crew, no matter your family tree, if you like to include all members in your vacations, on behalf of adventurous pets everywhere, thank you.

Here are some travel tips for a memorable MN pet-friendly resort experience:

1.       Let’s talk travel. When you’re venturing by car with your dog or cat, it’s important to be prepared. Safety should always be number one. As I’ve said, I’m a simple guy so if I can look out the window at all the gorgeous Minnesota scenery, I’m a happy guy. I myself am a fan of the seatbelt tether. This is the one I have Some dogs and cats like a little more comfort so they opt for something along these lines No matter what you choose, unless you want to be picking hair off your clothes for months to come, set up a car seat cover too. Bottom line? If Max or Tiger aren’t riding loose in the car, you’re starting the trip out on the right paw.  

2.       Is your pet up to date on flea and tick prevention? Has he or she been microchipped? These are items to check off your list before you leave. Bring along medical records as well in case of an emergency or if your pet-friendly resort requires vaccinations or a medical history to stay with them. Setting everyone up for a safe and healthy adventure makes for an even more enjoyable time.

3.       You might be surprised by how many pet-friendly Minnesota resorts there are! If you’re unsure, call around. There may be an extra fee included, weight restrictions, or rules about the kind of pets you’re allowed to bring (not sure if Buddy the bearded dragon is welcome), but your safest bet is to inquire. My personal favorite is The Red Door Resort. It’s spacious, their staff is friendly and attentive, and there is an abundance of sticks to find, leaves to chase, and fresh air to breathe. And my family is always in a good mood when they’re there. The Red Door Resort does have a few rules but it’s mostly just fun!

o   It’s $15 a day to bring a pet to their resort but extra cleaning service fees could be accrued if their Pet Policy guidelines aren’t followed. They’d like you to keep pets off the furniture; this includes beds, bunks, couches, and chairs. If your pet is used to being on furniture at home (raises paw), they’d like you to bring a sheet or blanket to place over the furniture. If you don’t do this, that’s where the extra cleaning service fee comes in. It’s typically $50 if bedding, cushions, etc. need to be washed, but if a piece of furniture needs to be replaced due to damage or staining, it could be more.  

o   Some accommodations at The Red Door Resort don’t allow furry companions, so when you make your reservations, be sure to let them know you’re bringing your BFF!

o   While on their grounds, please pick up after your dog immediately.

o   Pets aren’t allowed in or near the swimming beach, but they are allowed in the harbor.

o   While on the grounds, furry buddies are required to be leashed and please don’t leave them unattended unless in their kennel. Their cleaning staff won’t enter a unit if a dog is barking or unkenneled.

o   Lastly, if your animals are disruptive, you could be asked to leave.

4.   What to pack for your Minnesota vacations: Furry kids or human kids, this is always a struggle. Here’s a list that will get you started:

·   Pet crate for bedtime or when you go out for dinner.          

·   Leash and collar with ID tags.

·   Food, water, and snacks (a must!) and don’t forget the travel bowls!

·   Waste bags or a litter box.

·   Comfort items like blankets and favorite toys.

·   Any medications needed.

·   First aid kit including bandages, blunt-end scissors, tweezers, a towel, surgical sticky tape, non-adhesive absorbent dressing, alcohol wipes, and an Elizabethan collar (aka cone of shame.)

5.       Have a plan! I usually like to stop every couple of hours for potty breaks and to stretch my legs for a few minutes. And I’ll want to eat lunch and dinner and snack when you do, of course. Flexibility is key! Maybe the weather won’t be what you expected or maybe a pit stop has me doing a little extra tree sniffing, but we’re all together (and I’M IN THE CAR!) and that’s all that matters.

As you pull up to your home away from home sanctuary, I hope you feel relaxed and ready to take on the outdoor adventures, snuggles, and unplugged quality family time that lies ahead for you and your loved ones. I’m happy to have perhaps played a small part in what I hope is not only an enjoyable experience in the Land of 10,000 Lakes but a treasured memory-making one as well.

*Yawn* I don’t know about you, but I think this calls for a nap in the Minnesota sunshine. Now go and plan your family vacation! You can take all the credit for how prepared and planned you are, I won’t tell. I’ll send over my invoice for duties fulfilled, payment due in belly rubs and ear scratches.    



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