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Pet Friendly Travel in the News

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WILL BOARDING PEOPLE ALONG WITH THEIR PETS BE NEXT TREND IN HOLIDAY TRAVEL?

Growth in Pet Friendly Accommodations Provides Welcome Options For 12 Million Holiday Travelers Who Bring Pets Along for the Ride

Hollywood, CA, November 15, 2006 -- Twelve million pets, mostly dogs, are expected to be traveling this holiday season – posing thorny hospitality issues for those pet owners whose friends and relatives are not equipped to accommodate four-legged guests overnight. Thankfully, the growing number of lodgings with “Welcome” signs that also read “Pet Friendly” is filling a rising need in a society that has become both increasingly mobile, and increasing pet-oriented.

Pet travel expert Tracey Thompson, founder of travel website PetFriendlyTravel.com, sees several key factors that will spur the trend in holiday bookings for travelers with pets. “Not only is there absolute growth in the number of lodgings and vacation rentals that welcome pets, up 28% in the last three years, but pet owners are increasingly aware of those pet travel options thanks to the proliferation of pet friendly travel information in the marketplace and in the news. Together with improvements in pet-safe transportation features from auto manufacturers, the national availability of pet friendly destinations and activities like dog parks and dog beaches, and the growing appreciation that pet travel is a ‘social good’ we’re seeing tremendous gains in people’s willingness to bring their animals along for their holiday trips ‘Over the River and Through the Woods.’”

Thompson adds, “Industry statistics show that 40% of travelers with pets already stay in commercial venues – from top end hotels to vacation cabins. As the number of pet-friendly lodgings soars, it ensures that those options are closer and closer to everyone’s proverbial ‘grandmother’s house’ – and more convenient for holiday socializing.”

Thompson, whose website provides visitors with information about pet-friendly destinations and activities in addition to lodgings, also offers pet-friendly advice for pet owners who want to include their animal companions in the festive mood of the holiday season.

PetFriendlyTravel.com’s Ten Tips for Holiday Pet Travel are:

1. When planning to take your pet to visit friends and relatives during the holidays, check in advance to make sure your pet is welcome. Consider booking pet friendly lodgings as an overnight option, which avoids boarding hassles and fees.

2. Crowds of unfamiliar people and holiday festivities can frighten animals. Plan ahead on your pets’ behalf and make sure they have a “safe haven” where they can retreat when you’re entertaining.

3. Don’t feed pets from the holiday table. Rich holiday foods can trigger gastrointestinal problems for a dog or cat.

4. Remember -- chocolate can be toxic or even fatal to dogs and cats!

5. Avoid giving bones to your dogs or cats, particularly turkey bones. Poultry bones easily splinter and can cause serious injury, while bone fragments can cause intestinal blockages or lacerations.

6. Know where your pets are when guests are coming and going. Pets can easily get trapped in unfamiliar places, such as a closet or cabinet, when a house gets busy.

7. Make sure children know how to approach an animal that doesn’t know them.

8. Keep track of holiday decorations, glass ornaments and holiday candles. Ribbons, wrapping paper, ornaments, tinsel, extension cords and gifts may be appealing “chew toys” that may make your pet sick.

9. Keep poinsettias and mistletoe out of reach. They can be deadly to animals.

10. Christmas trees need to be well-secured. Pets, particularly cats, can knock them down.

About Pet Friendly Travel
Founded in 2000 by Emmy Award-winning children’s television producer Tracey Thompson, www.PetFriendlyTravel.com provides easy access to pet friendly accommodations in the US and Canada, including dog and pet friendly hotels, vacation rentals, cabins, motels, inns, bed and breakfasts, cottages, resorts and lodges. The site’s business partners comprise more than 1,000 separate listings, including private vacation rental owners and property management companies. In addition to lodging listings, the site also includes information on pet friendly restaurants, recreation activities and attractions, dog parks and dog beaches, and campgrounds.

For additional information:
Tracey Thompson
www.PetFriendlyTravel.com
323-850-5732

Naerim Kim/Brain O’Keefe
Brainerd Communicators
212-986-6667

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