GoPetFriendly.com

Pet Travel. Made Easy.

GoPetFriendly’s Manifesto

Manifesto

It’s been seven months since we launched our web site and wrote our first blog post on June 1, 2009. In that time we made two road trips with our dogs, traveling 8,600 miles over eight weeks. In that time we joined Facebook and Twitter, building relationships with hundreds of friends and thousands of followers. In that time we got the lay of the land, figuring out what it is we need to do.

At GoPetFriendly, we are charging into 2010 – this new year, this new decade – with hope, enthusiasm, AND A MANIFESTO. Our reason for being. According to Google, a manifesto is defined as a public declaration of intentionsOur manifesto is to shift society’s consciousness from an overall attitude of “pet tolerance” to one that openly embraces and welcomes pets in all aspects of our lives. Isn’t that what the oft-touted term “pet friendly” should really mean?

What’s our rationale?  Our pets are our friends, our companions, and our partners. We’ve accepted responsibility for their care, which includes providing opportunities for them to reach their highest potential. That potential can be more easily achieved by weaving our pets’ existence more fully into our day-to-day activities. Isn’t that what belonging to a pack is all about?

Of course, just as we deserve to include our pets in our lives, there are people who prefer not to have our animals foisted upon them.  So pet owners must take care to minimize the imposition on others, within reason.

We will focus our efforts in the areas of pet travel, doggie dining, and leisure activities in the US and Canada. To educate and challenge others to re-examine their “it’s just a dog/cat” beliefs, we will lead by extreme example – leaving behind a more conventional way of life to travel full-time with our dogs. We will blog about our experiences and use social media and traditional public relations strategies to advocate for more pet access, the removal of weight and breed restrictions, and supporting businesses that choose to be pet friendly.

To assist others in adopting a pet-friendly lifestyle we will continue providing a free, up-to-date, easy-to-use web site that helps pet owners locate great places to stay and find entertaining activities to do with their pets. The site will also include resources (veterinarians, pet supply stores, pet sitters, and dog walkers) to help resolve pet-related issues that may be encountered when traveling. We are committed to adding as much information as we can find in order to be the most complete pet travel resource on the Internet.

Why are we doing this? Why are we putting it out there? Because we want to stand for something.  Because we want raving fans who will help us make a difference. Because when the GoPetFriendly community says something is good, people will believe us.

So when you visit our site and read our blog, you’ll know what to expect. We hope to incite people to act … or to react.  Too much?  We think not!  Tell us what you think!

Planning a pet friendly trip of your own? We’ll make it easy:
Pet Friendly Hotels | Pet Friendly Destinations | Pet Friendly Activities

  • […] received some great feedback on our GoPetFriendly Manifesto.  Based on a recent, bad travel experience one commenter suggested that someone should create a […]

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  • Michele says:

    I love the manifesto. Our pets are family members, and just like children, as long as they are well behaved, it is time to include them in our travels. I love going to hotels and seeing well behaved dogs treated like an honored guest. That is the way it should be. I look forward to reading more of your travels.

  • Gina says:

    You’re right Annal, there are many pet friendly hotels here on Dartmoor in and around Exeter, but they really mean dog friendly. Dog friendly related searches on Google are a lot more frequent than pet friendly, so it seems to be a common assumption that pet’s usually means just dogs.

    I appreciate the work that GoPetFriendly are doing. There are so many dog friendly hotels and accommodation in the South West, and not many are aware of the many places that they can go on holiday, and not have to worry about leaving their dog with the neighbour!

  • Annal – Thank you for taking the time to read and comment. And you are absolutely right. First, let me elaborate and qualify about our pronoun policy. I re-read our manifesto to make sure we say “pets,” not just dogs. Whew … think we’re good! Seriously, we are very conscious of saying/writing pets – and here’s athe qualifier – unless what we’re referencing clearly relates to dogs. Hence, dog walkers, not pet walkers. We also generally talking about “doggie dining” options – in all my travels, I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a cat at a restaurant (not that they wouldn’t be welcome at mine, if I had a one).

    And as you have, unfortunately, noticed pet friendly does not necessarily mean cat friendly. I suspect that is because more people are allergic to cats than to dogs, but I have no proof of that. Nonetheless, your point is well taken. As a gentle plug for our web site, that is why we have a separate search engine criteria for cats – so you know that the hotels that come back will accept feline companions.

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