For me the very coolest of jobs that I am lucky enough to do involve travel. While most pet owners cringe at the thought of traveling with their pets for many different reasons, I and many of the animal trainers in the entertainment industry, have done this so many times we know the pitfalls and try to prepare well in advance for any event.
I am lucky to say that in nearly 19 years of traveling I have never had any kind of incident that has negatively impacted the animal I was traveling with. You can check out my Training Post on “Flying with your Dog” (which will be posted here in the next couple of months) for tips on traveling safely.
This job for a spaghetti sauce involved flying down to Santiago, Chile. I had never been before so was very excited. I had Echo as seen above and we stayed at the very dog friendly hotel The Ritz Carlton. And let me just say that whenever you can stay The Ritz Carlton – do so. They LOVE dogs! This was Echo – checking in.
Okay, so the bed they provided was a little small – but Echo didn’t seem to mind. My room had a dog bed, dog bowls and some dog bones waiting for us once we’d checked in.
The city itself was very dog friendly. Its the first time I was able to take my dog into a Starbucks! I LOVE it! And when we left our dogs at the hotel and ventured out to do some exploring it wasn’t long before we found some local dogs. This local stray (rather well fed I might add) had three legs and some enterprising person stuck a coat on him to make him more appealing? As soon as you sat down at this outdoor cafe he would stroll up (? hop up?) and lay down at your feet – how can you not feed that dog! I suspect that this is years of careful planning and it appears that he is very successful in his attempts at subtle begging.
The dogs (below) seem a little more concerned with us standing in a road than we do – here I am with Tracy Kelly, fantabulous trainer with her little dog Finn. I have to say, the airport staff upon checking the dogs in, were more courteous and caring for the dogs than at Los Angeles airport, I did not expect that. But then I guess if you live in a city where you can take your dog into a Starbucks then that says a lot about the people.