Is it me or has there been in increase with pet ownership or finding out pet activities during the pandemic, one holiday park provider is pushing back on the recent spike of luxury dog holidays by urging pet owners to let ‘dogs be dogs’. They’re challenging owners to swap dog degustation menus and spa treatments for time outdoors getting mucky, chasing balls and digging holes in the sand.
“We have seen a recent increase in city based hotels promoting themselves as dog friendly and in doing so, offering everything from pet acupuncture to speciality non-alcoholic wine. With almost all of our parks dog friendly, we know what four legged companions really want from a holiday. There is nothing better than seeing dogs smile as they bound along the beach chasing the waves. You can’t get that same feel good moment from a hotel room – even if it has a dog minibar and in-room dining menu!” says Jo Thomas, spokesperson at Reflections Holiday Parks.
To encourage pet owners to holiday with their poochies outdoors, Reflections are encouraging nature based activities for dogs including running through muddy puddles, playing ‘fetch’ on the beach, games like ‘tug of war’ ropes, beach frisbees and walking trails. In addition to staying for free, dogs will receive a free pig’s ear or bone on arrival during October – a step change from a fancy plated dog cuisine at a pet friendly hotel.
The initiatives coincide with a Spring long crusade by Reflections to get people sharing photos of their feel good moments on social media to help raise each other’s spirits. Each week, one lucky winner who’s shared their feel-good moment on Facebook and Instagram with #findthefeels #reflectionsholidayparks will win a holiday, plus the company will pay one forward to a healthcare worker in Victoria. This month, they’re urging pet owners to share photos of their dog’s feel good moments to win.
For those new to camping, Reflections have also gathered their top five tips for camping with dogs. “These tips are based on years of experience welcoming dogs to 29 of our 37 parks. We’ve seen every breed of dog enjoy caravan and camping – and we’ve also seen owners teach us a trick or two about hitting the road with a four legged traveller,” said Thomas.
Five tips for camping with dogs
- Buy a dog exercise cable and stake from a pet store before you leave home. This will stop your poochie wandering off in the night or chasing wildlife whilst you sleep. It’s also handy to keep them out of harm’s way whilst you cook and gather around the campfire
- If your dog is used to sleeping in its own enclosed space, you might want to bring a portable dog crate or invest in a dog tent. This will make him feel safe and secure overnight after a hard day playing at the beach.
- Do you research before you leave on dog friendly hikes, trails and beaches. Whilst you’ll need to avoid National Parks, there is a plethora of scenic gems that are pet friendly such as Jimmys Beachjust north of Newcastle and Red Rock north of Coffs Harbour.
- Pack some dog shampoo or dog wipes so you’re not stressing about sand, mud and mucky paws inside your tent, caravan or cabin. If you’re letting your dog have the time of its life, you’ll want to wash it down at the end of the day – just like us humans!
- Write your campsite number on a dog tag with a Sharpie and attach it to Fido’s collar. This simple hack will stop your fur baby getting lost should he get off the lead.
To win a holiday worth $750 upload photos of your feel good moments and tag #findthefeels #reflectionsholidayparks. T&C’s apply from Reflections Holiday Parks, visit here for info.