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More Hotels Opening Doors To Pets

The hotel business is a $113 billion industry and hotel owners are always looking for ways to expand their market.

Since 19 percent of Americans take their pets with them when they travel, hotels nationwide are pulling out all the stops for animal companions.

AAA says that pet-friendly properties have grown 28 percent since 1999 — more than 13,000 hotels nationwide.

When patrons check in at the four seasons Atlanta, they are given a newsletter that explains where there are nearby parks to take his dog, plus numbers for services like doggie daycare, grooming, even room service — just for dogs.

"People are traveling more with their families whether it be their parents their children and their pets," Denise Flanders, the general manager of the Atlanta Four Seasons told The Early Show veterinary correspondent Dr. Debbye Turner.

Chicken, filet mignon, a $120 caviar spread and salmon are among the dishes prepared at the Atlanta Four Seasons. But when the executive pastry chef David Jeffries isn't designing perfect wedding cakes, he is baking fresh doggie snacks made with ingredients like peanut butter, oats and eggs.

The Loews Regency in New York has the Loews loves pets program. Road weary hounds that stay there get a special placemat, food bowls and even a toy when they arrive.

"We go way beyond just allowing guests to bring pets," said Emily Goldfischer of Lowes Hotels. "It's about making the pets feel so comfortable, it's better than being at home. People are so passionate about their animals that I am not that surprised that the program has been such a hit."

Frequent traveler Tom Lynch chose Loews specifically because of their pet-friendly ways.

"Where else do they remember the dog's name? They don't know my name but they know Daisy's name," he said.

There are also learning vacations where your dog can surf and record an album in Tennessee. At the Peaks resort and Golden Door spa in Telluride, Colo., your dog can get "paw"dicures and massages.

Sasha Proano takes her Yorkie with her everywhere she goes. Because the W hotel averages about 50 guests and their pets per month at five New York locations, it is one of the places she chooses to frequent

"I want him to be treated the same that I do. He's my own. He's my only one and I feel like he deserves it," he said. "They also provide a big pillow, which he enjoys. He doesn't want to sleep in the bed with me. That's usually not common, not at home."

AAA's Top Ten Cities For Traveling With Pets

1. Houston
2. San Antonio
3. Austin
4. Albuquerque
5. Phoenix
6. Dallas
7. New York
8. Orlando
9. Nashville
10. Tucson

For more information, visit these sites:

  • Four Seasons Atlanta
  • Loews Hotels
  • The Peak Resort
  • W Hotels
  • The Benjamin
  • Pets On The Go
  • Pets Welcome
  • Travel Dog
  • Dog Friendly
  • Barnes & Noble