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With tips for Fido-friendly travel, road trips on a budget, and much more, PlanYourRoadTrip.com is our favorite new trip-planning website.
|SoCal Adventures, Part 2|
|Written by Robyn Larson McCarthy|
|Friday, 18 December 2009 11:59|
Don't leave the dogs behind when you head to the Happiest Place on Earth
When I lived in Los Angeles, I went to Disneyland often (thanks to discounted annual passes for SoCal residents), and Chaucer almost always came along. Or, he thought he did. As far as he was concerned, the tram ride from the parking structure to the drop-off point near Downtown Disney was what Disneyland was all about. Could any ride inside the actual park equal the unadulterated doggy joy of speeding along in an open-air vehicle, ears flapping, tongue hanging, nose sniffing away? And, of course, the admiration and ear scratches from every kid and Disney "cast member" he met along the way just added to his fun. That his ride ended with being dropped off at Disney's Kennel Club just outside the main entrance gate didn't matter. There was always the ride back to the car to look forward to.
Most visitors to Disneyland don't know the amusement park has an on-site kennel--but I've met many people, out-of-state visitors and residents alike, who've commented, "I wish I'd known that" after stopping to meet Chaucer at the park. With your dog right there at the park, you needn't worry about how long Fido can wait at home without a bathroom break, and you don't have to check him in for overnight boarding if you are traveling. The kennel stays open 30 minutes after the park closes (which was 11:00 the night we were there earlier this week), and owners are free to come and go as often as they wish to walk, water, and/or feed their dogs. (You can also leave feeding/water instructions, but they still request you return every three to five hours to walk your pet, as Disney employees do not take them out of the crates.) The fee is $20 for the day--average for dog day camp (but without any of the playtime interaction with other dogs or staff). No reservations are required but you do need to bring along your vaccination records, of course.
Since this was the first time visiting the park with two dogs, we had not thought ahead about the logistics of getting both of them, along with a sleeping Boy (no stroller!), and the bags resulting from some successful Christmas shopping back on the tram and to the car. Then we remembered the 15-minute parking lot off Harbor Boulevard near the hotel shuttle and taxi drop-off; the Kennel Club is also on the Harbor Boulevard side of the enormous plaza between Disneyland and California Adventure. So we returned to the car and drove around to the 15-minute lot. Then Carmen made two runs over to the kennel to retrieve the hounds, while I stayed in the car with a very happy little boy, dreaming no doubt of his two turns on the "special Pooh ride" and getting to fly the "Dumbo plane." If you have an especially large dog, you might want to try the 15-minute lot when dropping off your furry friend at the start of your Disney day as well.