Vegas vacations are becoming Fido-friendly: New programs, parties cater to canines

Your pets: You come home to them and tell them everything. They’re always there when you need them and you never have to worry about them judging you. So if you’re going on a little getaway, why should you leave them at home?

Instead of the hassle of finding a pet sitter or worrying about your pets being alone for the weekend, the best thing to do is take them with you.

These days, palm-sized pups aren’t the only ones who get to have all the fun. Pet policies no longer limit you to teacup dogs that can fit in a purse. So pack that leash, your pet’s favorite toy and get ready to party with your pet in Vegas.

“[Guests] love it,” said Judith Perez, executive vice president of the Siegel Group, which runs Rumor, a boutique hotel in Las Vegas. “It’s so much fun to travel with your pet.”

Fido-friendly hotels


Pets can enjoy all of the luxuries of a Vegas vacation. (Photo courtesy of b creative studio)

Plenty of Strip hotels including Trump, THEhotel at Mandalay Bay and Four Seasons offer pet-friendly accommodations, so you can enjoy the city with your canine companion. Caesars Entertainment Properties recently launched its PetStay Program.

“The program has been very successful, well beyond our initial expectations,” said Mary Ann Dennis, vice president of Regional Teleservices. “[Guests] no longer have to schedule boarding and worry about the welfare of their pets while they are gone.”

This program is available at the following properties: Caesars Palace; PH Towers; Planet Hollywood; Paris; Rio All Suite Hotel & Casino; Harrah’s; Flamingo; Bally’s and Imperial Palace. PetStay offers pet-friendly accommodations and amenities for those traveling with pets.

With PetStay, guests receive a pet-friendly welcome kit, which includes maps with on-site designated outdoor relief areas, pet walking routes and special room service menus. Guests and their companions also receive in-room amenities including a mat, food, water dishes, disposable waste bags and specialty dog treats.

Feline friends aren’t allowed yet, but there may be hope.

“We currently only allow dogs at the present time,” said Dennis. “We have had some requests for cats, birds and other animals and may consider expanding our services in the future.”

Information about additional dog-friendly items for sale and nearby dog services like grooming, walking and
vet care are all available upon check-in at each of these hotels.

Dogs must weigh 50 pounds or less and be present at the time of check-in. Dogs may walk through designated common areas on a leash and accompanied by the owner.

Dogs left unattended must be in a crate, which are available for rent.

Trump massage therapist Elliott Reed and celebrity pup Misty-Marley (Photo by Erik Kabik)

Trump massage therapist Elliott Reed and celebrity dog Misty-Marley (Photo by Erik Kabik)

Pamper your pup


Not only can your pup stay at a luxury hotel on the Strip, Las Vegas’ Trump hotel offers a one-of-a-kind amenity: pet

Elliott Reed, a massage therapist at the Trump hotel, performs dog massages in the guest’s hotel room. “The benefits a dog gets from a massage are very similar to that of a human,” Reed said.

These include calming the dog, easing aching muscles, increasing immune system; improving circulation; releasing
stress; aiding injured areas and heightening alertness. The service usually lasts 30 minutes.

Because this is something completely different than what dogs are used to, it may take a few minutes for them to settle.

“Some of the puppies are real ly hard to massage because they’re really hyper and active,” said Reed. “It takes a little bit of bonding, sometimes 10 to 15 minutes.”

One of Reed’s funniest moments was when he gave Misty-Marley, the dog from the hit movie, “Marley and
Me” a massage.

“She was really hyper at first, kind of like how she was in the movie,” he said. “So we actually had to call room service to bring up some vanilla ice cream because that’s her favorite. After she ate the ice cream, she relaxed. It was pretty funny.”

There is actually a secret technique that massage therapists use to calm them down. “The most relaxing stroke – which is the initial stroke when you massage a dog – [is] with your fingertips,” he said.

He said he would start massaging from the head (by the nose) and slowly stroke down the spine to help relax the nervous system.

“Most dogs’ favorite area to get massaged is their ears,” he added. “They have 15 muscles in each.” Reed said dogs normally lay down (small dogs lay on top of an ottoman), but some prefer to stand in place. And unlike humans, they don’t need the extra amenities.

“You don’t have to use any oils or lotions,” Reed said. “It’s all through touch. Sometimes, there’s music playing in the room, but I don’t think they’re too concerned about the music.”

Reed said he has practiced dog massages for a little less than a year. “I love dogs,” he said. “I don’t own one, but I had dogs while growing up and they seemed to like me as well.”

Yappy Hour


Louis takes part in Yappy Hour, a dog-friendly social gathering at Rumor hotel every other Thursday (Photo courtesy of b creative studio)

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better than pet stays and doggie massages, there’s even more fun your pup can experience in Vegas. At Rumor, a boutique hotel located just a few minutes east of the Las Vegas Strip, dogs can enjoy their version of “Central Bark.”

Hosted every other Thursday at Rumor’s grassy courtyard (from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.), Yappy Hour is the perfect way to mingle with other pet lovers and show your dog a fun time.

Perez came up with the idea when she as at the salon with her dog, Louis.

“I take Louis everywhere,” she said. “People love their dogs, like I do. I thought to myself, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if you can enjoy cocktails with your dog?’ I decided then we had to do a doggie happy hour.”

At this event, Perez said all kinds of dogs visit, from Great Danes to Teacup Yorkies.

“They all interact together,” she said. “It’s like being at a live show, [where] all the dogs are playing with each other
or running around.”

If your dog likes the extra attention, Yappy Hour features costume contests, talent and fashion shows as well as doggie cupcake eating races.

While at Yappy Hour, dogs can munch on treats by Sniffany & CO. and Three Dog Bakery. “In the next few weeks, we’ll have a doggie treat menu available,” Perez said.

Dog owners can enjoy their own special bites like Kobe Sliders, chicken and bacon quesadillas, mac styx, five-spice seared tuna, Thai chicken satay or the Mediterranean plate. Drink specials include Louis’ Long Island, Dachshund Delight, Puppy Love and more. Dogs stay hydrated with plenty of water in doggie dishes throughout the courtyard.

And while many of you come to Vegas to do your own shopping, your pup can have his or her own swag. At Yappy
Hour you can buy designer dog collars, dog beds or even treat your pet to an on-site doggie massage.

With everything from pet-friendly hotels and pet massages to their own social hour, bringing your furry friend to Vegas is the ideal vacation. That’ll give them something to bark about.

Doggie Trips & Tips

dogs• Take your pup to Yappy Hour at Rumor, a boutique hotel in Las Vegas. Rumor hosts this doggie-filled party every other Thursday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. For more information about Yappy Hour, please call (800) 997-8667.
• Mandalay Place inside Mandalay Bay features Viva Dogs Vegas, a boutique filled with doggie apparel, treats, toys and everything to make your pet’s stay a memorable one.
• The law states you’re not allowed to walk your dog on the Strip for safety and sanitary reasons. However, you can still take your dog for a walk at Town Square, located just south of Four Seasons and Mandalay Bay. At Brio, an Italian eatery within the property, your dog can even sit with you outside on the patio.
• For those who plan on flying and bringing their small pets, please remember that pets count as a carry-on bag or personal item. A cabin pet charge applies. Animals must be able to stand up, turn around and lie down in a natural position in the kennel. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, cats and dogs should not be given sedatives or tranquilizers before the flight. (Information courtesy of American Airlines.)
• Las Vegas can get extremely hot during the summer months – please keep this in mind when planning a pet-friendly


Most folks take their Vegas jackpot winnings back home, but my dad decided to stay here instead. That’s how I left Seattle almost 20 years ago. I moved from greenery and rainy days to hot summers, palm trees and desert. As much as I love my hometown, I decided to stick around Vegas. This city just has so much to offer. You don’t even have to be a gambler, bar hopper or an all-night partier. I love Vegas for its awesome vegan-friendly spots, concerts, swanky hotel suites and spas so big, they’re like castles. The pool scene is not too shabby either, which is why I love taking stay-cations. Besides living it up -- Vegas style -- I’m hanging out with my handsome hubby, adorable baby girl, two cats and super-fluffy Shih-Tzu. I’m also a huge fan of '90s music, shows and movies. You can find me on Google+ and Twitter.

There is 1 comment for this article
  1. Chris M at 3:43 pm

    Don’t forget, Buffalo Bills in Primm, NV at stateline is also a pet friendly resort.