This coming December will mark the 1 year anniversary of when my wife and I adopted our third child. And similar to how it was when our daughter and son were born 15 years and 12 years ago, respectively, my wife and I have found it difficult to go on vacation without the little one. My two kids might take exception with me referring to our dog Santana as our third child, but it’s hard to argue that the amount of time we put into caring for our amazing canine is much less than what we did and still do for our son and daughter. It’s not just the basic requirements of providing food and shelter, cleaning up waste and seeking veterinary care when needed, its the countless hours I spend with Santana playing outside, mostly at our amazing nearby dog park. I like to put on a good front for the family that taking Santana to the dog park is a choir and not leisure. The truth though is that I get tremendous joy in seeing the unbridled energy and excitement Santana displays every time she steps foot inside the wide open space of a dog filled playground. So the thought of going on vacation and leaving our little one in the hands of someone or someplace thats does not share the same enthusiasm is an uncomfortable one.
But sooner or later, it’s going to be time for me to let go, pack the bags with the wife and kids and leave Santana behind. As much as I love having Santana with me at all times, the reality is that having a dog with you on vacation does limit the number of activities you can enjoy, not to mention the costs of traveling with an animal. Fortunately, we found a service that can put my mind at ease, DogVacay. For pet owners like me that don’t want to use kennels, DogVacay allows your dog to stay in a loving home while you are away with the comfort of knowing that you will receive daily updates on how it is doing so you never have to worry while you’re gone. And unlike other companies that might offer similar services, DogVacay provides free pet insurance during the stay at the host’s home as well as 24/7 customer service.
The part about the service I find most appealing is the ease of use. Pet owners can simply enter their zip code and find a Host nearby who will care for your animal. Despite what the name says, cats and other animals are also welcome. There are over 20,000 hosts in the DogVacay network and all of them must maintain a 5 star review in order to stay in the program. So while there might not be someone out there that can care for my dog the way I do, at least I know its pretty close. And if you are inclined to be a part of the host community yourself and meet the rigorous standards of care that are expected for other people’s pets, DogVacay can be a fantastic way for dog lovers with flexible schedules to make some extra money. Watching just a few pets each month can translate into hundreds of dollars in extra income which isn’t too shabby.
I’m not quite sure when our next family vacation is going to be, but I think it has to be one where I take a break from the local dog park at the chosen destination. Santana, I feel very guilty for even thinking that way. But I know your DogVacay vacation is going to be just as fun as mine and when we get back, we can talk about the great time you had getting those non-stop belly rubs. On second thought, maybe I’ll join you.
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by DogVacay.com. However, all opinions expressed are 100% are own!
October 16, 2014