I spent awhile deciding whether or not to run this story on my pets blog or Disney. Because I focused more on the pets angle for this article, I decided to post it here.
Disney may already be a bit pet-friendly with kennels at their parks, but given the company’s love for a no-holds-barred vacation experience, I’m only surprised they didn’t debut a full-blown pets resort sooner.
That’s right: the official Disney Parks blog has details on the soon-to-launch resort aimed at making Disney World the Most Magical on Earth for the entire family, four-legged members included. Disney’s always had kennel options for families who don’t want to leave their pets behind at home, but this resort is something different.
The Best Friends Pet Care resort will open on August 27 and reservations are now being accepted. Because it’s at Disney, expect not only the finest care for your pet, but a wide range of services. Best Friends welcomes not only dogs and cats, but what the resort calls “pocket pets”: hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits, ferrets, and the like.
Special services offered by the fancy boarding facility include air conditioned rooms, private outdoor play areas, bedtime stories with the staff, an exclusive wetlands dog park, water park, and more. Pet owners will also be able to choose a la carte options to add to their dog’s experience, like social activities with other dogs, one-on-one time with staff, or even an ice cream treat time.
Cats get to while away their vacations in luxury in a pavilion separate from the dogs’, in both two-and-four-room “condos.” Presumably the “pocket pets” are kept in yet another separate area from the other pets in the resort.
If I were considering taking my pet along with me to Disney World, I’d certainly feel safe boarding it at Best Friends. Disney didn’t get the idea and then just throw it together; Best Friends Pet Care is an independently-run company with several branches in multiple states that Disney contracted to build a new facility within their park.
However, I’m not sure that I would take my pets along with me to Disney World. I don’t know that they’d enjoy being carted several hours either by plane or car just to spend most of their vacation time away from their family anyway.
On second thought, maybe Cole and Chihiro would enjoy a luxurious vacation away from us…
Even though I trust the experts at Best Friends to take excellent care of my pets, knowing my pets I think they’d ultimately be happier staying near home with familiar friends and family than having to travel long distances only to see me briefly each day, if at all.
I’m also a bit curious about the types of pets welcomed at Best Friends. The resort certainly caters to more animals than any other boarding facility I’ve encountered, and I respect that they appear to have decided that their services cover mammals only; at least they’ve picked a reasonable line at which to stop. Still, I can’t imagine that the care for cage-dwelling “pocket pets” differs all that much from that for avian or reptilian pets.
But that last point isn’t meant to nitpick about the facility; I’m mostly just in awe at the wide range of services offered by Best Friends. What I do know is that any Disney-goers who’d like to bring their pets along on vacation now have an ideal spot for their pets to stay.
If you want to make reservations at Best Friends for your pet, call 877-4-WDW-PETS or go to the Best Friends web site.