In a recent post for Frommer’s blog, Christopher Elliott says traveling with pets is “ridiculous.” I take issue with that.
Apparently, the story started with Mr. Elliott requesting advice when the plans he’d made for the care of his three Bengal cats fell through before he and his family left on a cross-country roadtrip. He received a far different response than he expected – some pretty scathing comments from, as he describes, “foaming-at-the-mouth pet fans.”
Mr. Elliott goes on to highlight three pet related episodes that took place on airplanes over the past 11 years and, from there, concludes that “no cats, dogs, or pigs belong on a plane, in a hotel, or a rental car … unless maybe you’re moving somewhere.”
Clearly, I disagree, but everyone has a right to their opinion. What I take issue with is his categorization of people who want to travel with their pets as misguided, anthropomorphizing, and morally righteous. He also sees the need to throw in the fact he’s a carnivore … I’m not sure what point he’s trying to make with that. Should we be concerned for the welfare of his pets, or is he insinuating people shouldn’t travel with their cattle?
Most disappointing though, is Frommer’s involvement. You’d expect their blog to include articles that support and inspire travelers. Instead they gave Mr. Elliott a platform to insult and degrade a substantial segment of the traveling public.
Sixty percent of pet owners said they traveled with their pet in 2010. Considering 115 million households have a pet, that’s a lot of misguided, anthropomorphizing, morally righteous people, wouldn’t you say?
Mr. Elliott, who seems to enjoy stirring the pot, drew the ire of some of the more radical and outspoken pet lovers out there. He then proceeded to toss us all in the same basket, perhaps hoping for more contentious responses … and the corresponding spike in traffic that would result. Well, I won’t be baited.
I have no problem with you not taking your cats on your road trip. In fact, I agree that your cats will probably be happier at home than with you, your wife, and three kids in a car for weeks on end.
As for me, I’d much rather travel with your cats across the country than your kids. That doesn’t make me misguided or anthropomorphizing. Nor does it make me morally righteous. Actually, it makes me extremely common.
We are a society of pet lovers and each year more people discover the joy of including their pets in their travels. Sadly for you, Mr. Elliott, we’ve become a market force, and businesses will continue to recognize and devise products and services to accommodate us. GoPetFriendly.com is here to support that movement, and we have some advice for you: Get used to it, because we’re here to stay.
If you think we’re pawsome, recommend us to your friends! One quick click of those buttons on the left is nearly as good as a big, sloppy kiss – helping us grow our audience and ensuring we can keep delivering the quality pet travel stories you love. Thanks for being wooftastic!
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