Honey and I are banished.
We have to find somewhere to spend the day while my husband Mike is replacing the fuel lines in the boat.
I’m reminded that the United States stinks at providing amenities for people who travel with pets.
Here’s my wishlist.
Pet Travel Amenities I’d Like To See
The United States is terrible at providing creature comforts for people who travel with creatures. Wouldn’t you like to see
Pet Friendly Restrooms
If you’re traveling alone and the weather makes it unsafe for your pet to stay in the car, you’d better wear a diaper. Because many rest area bathrooms have “no dogs” signs on the doors.
Climate Controlled Waiting Areas
Our car broke down on the highway one Christmas. It was below freezing.
While Mike arranged for a tow, I huddled in the back vestibule of the rest stop shivering with my dogs, Agatha and Christie.
Would it be so terrible set aside a small area with heat (or air conditioning) for people traveling with pets?
Pet Waste Stations
Honey and I are sitting in a park. My jacket is stuffed with poop bags. And it’s a good thing. Because if I wasn’t prepared, I couldn’t find a waste bag anywhere along the walking paths or beach.
Y’know, if you want people to do the right thing, make it easy for them.
Walk Up Restaurants
Since restaurants don’t allow dogs to dine indoors, it would be nice if they’d at least offer walk up service for people with dogs.
If I really get cold and need a hot drink, there is a doughnut shop a few blocks up the highway. And yes, it has a “no walk ups” sign on the carry out window. As does the next closest fast food place.
Heck, I’d be happy for a few outdoor vending machines.
Map Of Pet Amenities
It’s always raining when we pull into a rest stop to give Honey a break and only see “no dogs” signs closest to the building and parking area.
After wandering around for several minutes, we finally spot a tiny sign pointing down a hill to the designated dog walk area. Which, of course, is swimming in dog poop because it has no pet waste stations and is so far away that irresponsible dog people think no one will see them leaving their dog’s poop behind.
Why can’t they put a big sign in front showing where the pet areas are? Or even better, put them close enough to the entrance that you see the pet area immediately?
Travel In A Pet Friendly World
Actually, my wish list is only the beginning.
I’d love to see pet friendly public transportation, pet friendly shopping, and pet friendly restaurants everywhere I go.
I know. I can wish for those things because my current dog is able to handle them.
But even people with reactive dogs, puppies, or dogs who don’t have “therapy dog” manners deserve to be able to go to the bathroom when they travel without worrying about their dog sizzling in the car or being stolen when they tie her to a post outside the restroom door.
And I suspect that if more places were pet friendly, dogs would develop the social skills that European dogs have because they’re allowed in many public settings.
For now, I’ll hang on to my wish list.
And hope I don’t have to use the bathroom or need a drink. Because the “welcome center” where Honey and I are spending the day is only welcoming if you don’t have pets.
Your Turn: What pet travel amenities are on your list?