While some hotels accept dogs on sufferance, others roll out the red carpet – or, at any rate, offer beds, treats, hugs and even menus for your best friend.
Every year, more and more pet owners are choosing to staycation with their dogs, treating their four-legged companions as an extra member of the family. Hundreds of savvy hotels have been cashing in on the hound pound by welcoming pets at their properties, meaning the variety of options in the UK is better than ever.
Here, from the newly published 46th edition of The Good Hotel Guide, are 10 of the best dog-friendly hotels in the UK (goodhotelguide.com), all carefully vetted for you. Tummy rubs all round!
The Meikleour Arms, Meikleour, Perth and Kinross
From Maida the majestic deerhound to Toto the Cairn terrier, dogs of all shapes and sizes are warmly received at this Georgian coaching inn and perfect country pub on the Marquess of Lansdowne’s estate. Some inn bedrooms, and all annexe cottages are dog friendly, with fresh water always available in public areas. You can walk in the wood beside the hotel, and along the Tay path – just don’t frighten the horses, or the hens, or annoy the anglers.
B&B doubles from £95, dogs £20 a night when booked direct. Visit meikleourarms.co.uk
The Sun Inn, Kirkby Lonsdale, Cumbria
Charlie the black Lab and dog blogger hosts two- and four-legged guests at this ancient inn in a charming market town between the Lakes and Yorkshire Dales. Welcome packs contain a towel, bowl and a little something. Then, while owners wolf down sticky toffee pudding at designated tables, there are wheat-free dog treats rustled up by the kitchen. Maps for walkies are provided, and there’s an outdoor dog shower for a freshen-up when you get back.
B&B doubles from £115, dogs £20 a night (or £30 for two). Visit sun-inn.info
The Felin Fach Griffin, Felin Fach, Powys
The ambience is relaxed and inclusive at this terrific dining-pub-with-rooms, with great walks from the doorstep, and the Brecon Beacons and Black Mountains in view. Let them know if you’re bringing a dog (they don’t charge), and book table 13 if it’s available. If not, Fido can sit under the table when you dine in the Tack Room, and on fine days, you can eat in the garden.
B&B doubles from £160. Visit felinfachgriffin.co.uk
Budock Vean, Mawnan Smith, Cornwall
Dogs can run free in the woodland area within 65-acre grounds bordered by the Helford river, at this upmarket spa hotel. They are allowed by prior arrangement in designated bedrooms, as well as holiday cottages, the conservatory and on the terrace, where you can dine alfresco. Bed covers are provided, as well as furniture covers, a dog mat and bowl on request.
B&B doubles from £152, dogs £10 per night (£8 a night for stays of six nights or more). Visit budockvean.co.uk
The Three Blackbirds, Woodditton, Cambridgeshire
Your dog will beg to be taken to this rustic-chic village pub set amid the fields, fens and woodland – and beggars can be choosers here, with a doggy menu of chews, nibbles and bites. Book a Muddy Paws break and walk along the Devil’s Dyke, though be aware that it’s not all smooth-going: lame dogs will need help over stiles. Return for a dinner of chargrilled Suffolk rump steak or fish and chips for you; a sausage or pig’s ear for Gnasher, washed down with Posh Pooch Rosé. The room charge includes a bed, bowl and snack.
B&B doubles from £110. Dogs £25 per night. Visit threeblackbirds.co.uk
The Star, Alfriston, East Sussex
Olga and Alex Polizzi have achieved the perfect blend of Wellie-boot country casual and effortless cool at this 15th-century hostelry in an ancient South Downs village. Your dog won’t feel de trop when you dine in the inn or courtyard (only the restaurant is off-limits). Ask for one of the ground-floor rooms in a new block, with French windows to a patio, and they’ll supply a dog bed and bowls.
B&B from £190, dogs £25 per night. Visit thepolizzicollection.com