Orlando, Florida, known as the “Theme Park Capital of the World,” offers plenty of pet-friendly attractions and amenities for travelers with dogs. While famous for its world-class theme parks, Orlando also boasts numerous dog-friendly parks, trails, and outdoor spaces. Lake Eola Park and Leu Gardens are popular spots where you can enjoy the city’s natural beauty with your furry friend.

Moreover, pet-friendly accommodations, dining options, and events are abundant in Orlando, ensuring a memorable and enjoyable visit for both you and your canine companion in this sunny and vibrant destination.

Should You Travel with Your Dog?

Whether or not you should travel with your dog depends on your dog’s personality and health. If your dog gets anxious easily, bringing them on a trip isn’t ideal. However, some dogs are great at adapting to new situations and love exploring different places, so those dogs would probably do well on the go.

Regardless of your dog’s temperament, there may be times when they need to travel with you, such as if you’re moving to a new location. If that’s the case, you may need to take extra precautions to ensure they’re as comfortable as possible. That could include stopping more frequently during a long drive or asking your vet about whether or not medications could help.

What to Pack When Traveling with Your Dog

Your dog may not need as much stuff as you do for a trip, but they still need the essentials. Plus, bringing items that look and smell familiar to your furry friend can help them feel more comfortable.

Here’s a list of supplies you should bring for your dog:

Up-to-date identification tags
Collar, harness, and leash
Plenty of healthy dog food
Medications (if they have any)
Pet first aid kit
Food and water dishes (collapsible bowls are the most convenient)
Poop bags
Vet records (some airlines, hotels, and events may require them)
Crate (if you need to confine your dog in the hotel)
Dog seat belt for car (unless you’re keeping them in a crate)
Airline carrier (if you’re flying)
Treats, toys, dog bed, and anything else that could help your dog feel more comfortable

This list is just a general guide of things you may need. Your packing list may vary based on where you’re going, how you’re getting there, and what activities you have planned. If you have space to spare, it can’t hurt to pack extra pet supplies out of caution.

What to Include in a Dog First Aid Kit

A dog first aid kit should include essential items like bandages, antiseptic wipes, tweezers, a thermometer, and a muzzle for safety. It’s also important to have saline solution for eye washing and a blanket for shock or cold. For a complete list of everything you need, see a comprehensive dog first aid guide here!

Finding a Dog-Friendly Hotel

While planning your trip, make sure you find a dog-friendly place to stay. Many lodging options, whether they’re a large hotel chain or a small local property, are willing to allow pets with some restrictions. The best way to know if your dog is welcome is to call the property before booking.

Looking for a pet-friendly Hotel so you can share your vacation with your four-legged friend? We’ve partnered with top travel sites to find you the best possible deals around. Just enter your travel plans below, and you’ll find pet-friendly hotels wherever you’re traveling. 

Other Lodging Options

Even though most popular hotel chains allow pets to some extent, they still might not be the right choice for you. Many prevent large dogs or more than two dogs at a time. Some may also prevent you from leaving your dog alone in the hotel, which can be difficult if you have some plans that aren’t pet-friendly. In this case, consider finding your pup a pet sitter who can take care of your dog while you’re enjoying a quiet dinner, seeing the sights or even taking in a show.

Book a Rover dog sitter and give your dog the best day ever!

So, if you’re struggling to find a good hotel, you may want to check other types of lodging, such as campgrounds or booking sites like Airbnb and Vrbo. Those options are often more flexible with pet restrictions because they don’t need to follow the policies of big chain hotels. Like with hotels, you should always contact the property to get the most detailed information on their pet restrictions.

Dog-Friendly Transportation Options

For most dogs, the scariest part of going on a trip is getting there. Dogs who aren’t used to riding in a car are likely to be anxious during a road trip and even more so on an airplane. So, here are some tips for how to keep your dog safe and comfortable when heading to your destination.

Driving with Your Dog

If possible, driving long distances with your dog will usually be easier and more comfortable than flying, especially if you have a large breed. However, you should make sure your dog is okay with riding in the car before you bring them on a road trip. If they don’t ride in the car much on a regular basis, start by taking them for short drives in preparation for the trip.

Here are some tips for taking a road trip with your dog:

Get your dog’s energy out before the long drive (take them for a walk, play fetch, etc.)
Make sure your dog is secure and comfortable (use a crate or dog seat belt, and make sure they have a cozy bed)
Stop more often than you need to so your dog can stretch their legs and do their business
Offer your dog fresh water every time you stop
Never leave your dog alone in the car on a warm/hot day

Flying with Your Dog

Most dogs have ridden in the car at one point or another, but flying with your dog is a much different experience. If your dog is under 20 pounds, they can ride in the cabin on most airlines, but if your dog is larger than that, they may have to fly in the cargo hold. Not being able to see your dog during the flight can be stressful, which is why families with larger dogs typically prefer to drive when possible.

Almost every airline allows dogs, but some have stricter rules than others. Always check an airline’s pet policy before planning to fly on it with your pup.

How to Travel with an Anxious Dog

If you have an anxious dog, driving and flying might both seem tricky. Luckily, there are things you can do to help a stressed-out dog feel more at ease while on the go.

Get your dog familiar with travel – take them to places they enjoy, such as the park, instead of only the vet.
Bring familiar items, such as their favorite beds and toys.
Keep their feeding times and bathroom breaks as close to their normal routine as possible.
Give them lots of exercise before getting in the car or entering the airport.
Stay calm – your dog may pick up on if you’re stressed and become more worried as a result.
Try anti-anxiety products, such as ThunderShirts and heartbeat toys.

While the above tips may reduce your dog’s anxiety, extremely anxious dogs will likely still show some fear in unfamiliar situations. Pet CBD Products, such as those made by Cannanine, can help calm down nervous pups during travel. Cannanine offers CBD oil and soft chews, both of which effectively calm dogs while being THC-free. Plus, every Cannanine product purchased donates meals to shelter dogs.

Top Tourist Attractions in Orlando, Florida

Orlando, Florida, is a top tourist destination known for its thrilling theme parks and a wide range of attractions and events. Here are some of the most popular ones:

Walt Disney World Resort: Comprising multiple theme parks, including Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom, it’s a magical world of rides, entertainment, and beloved characters.
Universal Orlando Resort: Home to Universal Studios Florida, Islands of Adventure, and Volcano Bay, offering exciting rides and attractions, including The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
SeaWorld Orlando: An aquatic-themed park with thrilling rides, live shows, and the opportunity to interact with marine animals.
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Located at Universal Orlando Resort and featuring attractions like Hogwarts Castle and Diagon Alley, it’s a must-visit for Potterheads.
Gatorland: A unique wildlife park showcasing thousands of alligators and crocodiles, as well as animal shows and exhibits.
ICON Park: A dining, shopping, and entertainment complex featuring The Wheel, a 400-foot-tall observation wheel offering stunning views of the city.
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex: Located nearby, this attraction provides an immersive experience with space exploration exhibits and the chance to see rockets and space shuttles.
Orlando Science Center: An interactive museum with hands-on exhibits, live science demonstrations, and a planetarium.
Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts: Enjoy Broadway shows, concerts, and other live performances in the heart of downtown Orlando.
Epcot International Food & Wine Festival: A popular annual event at Epcot featuring global cuisine, wine tastings, and live entertainment.
Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party (at Magic Kingdom): A family-friendly Halloween event with special parades, character meet-and-greets, and trick-or-treating.
Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival: An annual performing arts festival showcasing a wide range of theatrical productions and performances.

These attractions and events offer a diverse range of entertainment options, making Orlando a vibrant and exciting destination for tourists of all ages and interests.

Picking Activities Your Dog Can Join in Orlando, Florida

If you’re traveling with your dog for vacation, you should make sure they can join you for most, if not all, of your activities. Since dogs aren’t allowed indoors in many places, you should travel when the weather is nice to ensure you can spend time outside with your furry friend.

Orlando, Florida, offers numerous dog-friendly activities, allowing visitors to enjoy the city with their furry companions. Here are some dog-friendly activities in Orlando:

Lake Eola Park: This scenic park in downtown Orlando features a picturesque lake with swan boats, walking paths, and a pet-friendly playground. Enjoy a leisurely stroll with your dog and take in the views.
Dr. Phillips Dog Park: A spacious off-leash dog park with separate areas for small and large dogs, agility equipment, and plenty of room for your pup to run and play.
Mead Botanical Garden: Leashed dogs are welcome to explore this serene garden with winding trails, lush vegetation, and a butterfly garden.
Blue Jacket Park: Located in the Baldwin Park neighborhood, this park features walking paths and a lake where dogs can enjoy a swim or a game of fetch.
Lake Baldwin Park: This large park includes a dog-friendly beach area along Lake Baldwin, providing a great spot for your dog to cool off and socialize with other pups.
Bark Avenue Bakery: Visit this pet bakery in Orlando’s Audubon Park Garden District, offering a wide selection of dog treats and accessories.
Outdoor Dining: Many restaurants and cafes in Orlando have pet-friendly patios, including Dexter’s, The Stubborn Mule, and Stardust Video & Coffee. Enjoy a meal with your pup by your side.
Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour: While dogs can’t join the boat tour, you can take turns, allowing one person to enjoy the tour while the other stays with your dog in the shaded waiting area.
Lucky’s Market: This grocery store chain welcomes well-behaved dogs inside while you shop for groceries and pet supplies.
Yappy Hour at Fido’s Food Truck Park: This unique food truck park occasionally hosts “Yappy Hour” events, where you and your dog can enjoy food, drinks, and socializing with other pet owners.
Dog-Friendly Accommodations: Many hotels and vacation rentals in Orlando are pet-friendly, providing comfortable lodging for both you and your dog.

Remember to always keep your dog on a leash where required, clean up after them, and be considerate of other visitors and their pets while enjoying these dog-friendly activities in Orlando. This is just a list to get you started because the dog-friendly activities will vary based on where you’re visiting. While most outdoor events welcome pets as long as they’re well-behaved and you clean up after them, it’s always a good idea to check the event’s details to be sure. With enough planning and good weather, you can hang out with your dog the entire vacation!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are dogs allowed in the theme parks in Orlando, like Disney World and Universal Studios?

Most major theme parks in Orlando, including Disney World and Universal Studios, do not allow pets inside the parks. However, some have kennel facilities or pet care services nearby, so check with the specific park for options.

2. Can I bring my dog to restaurants or cafes in Orlando?

Many restaurants in Orlando have pet-friendly outdoor seating areas, but policies can vary. Always check with the restaurant in advance to confirm their pet policy and outdoor seating availability.

3. Are there any dog-friendly beaches in Orlando?

Orlando is not located on the coast, so it doesn’t have traditional beaches. However, there are nearby dog-friendly beaches, such as New Smyrna Beach and Smyrna Dunes Park, which are about an hour’s drive away.

4. What are the leash laws in Orlando?

Orlando typically enforces leash laws, requiring dogs to be on a leash in public areas. Always follow posted regulations to ensure safety and compliance.

5. Are there any dog-friendly hiking trails near Orlando?

While Orlando itself is relatively flat, there are some dog-friendly hiking trails within a reasonable driving distance. The Little Big Econ State Forest and Wekiwa Springs State Park offer scenic options.

6. Can I bring my dog to events or festivals in Orlando?

Some outdoor events and festivals in Orlando are dog-friendly, especially those held in public spaces. Check event websites or contact organizers for information on their pet policies.

7. Where can I find pet supplies and dog-friendly stores in Orlando?

Orlando has pet supply stores like PetSmart and Petco, as well as local pet boutiques, where you can find pet supplies, food, and accessories.

8. Are there any dog-friendly accommodations in Orlando?

Many hotels, motels, and vacation rentals in Orlando are pet-friendly. Be sure to inquire about their specific pet policies when making reservations.

9. What are the options for pet daycare or boarding in Orlando?

Orlando offers a variety of pet daycare and boarding facilities, including both traditional kennels and upscale pet resorts. Research and make reservations in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons.

10. Where can I find emergency veterinary care in Orlando?

Orlando has several veterinary clinics and 24-hour emergency pet care facilities. Keep their contact information handy in case of any pet emergencies during your trip.

Final Thoughts

Traveling with your dog to Orlando, Florida can be a fantastic adventure, but it requires careful planning and consideration. Here are some final thoughts and tips to ensure a successful trip:

Check Theme Park Policies: If you plan to visit theme parks, check their pet policies in advance. Most theme parks in Orlando do not allow pets inside, so arrange for pet care if needed.
Research Pet-Friendly Options: Orlando offers numerous pet-friendly parks, dining spots, and activities. Research these options to create an enjoyable itinerary for you and your dog.
Prepare for the Weather: Orlando can be hot and humid, especially in the summer. Ensure your dog stays hydrated and protected from the sun during outdoor activities.
Respect Leash Laws: Always keep your dog on a leash where required and obey local leash laws to ensure safety and courtesy to others.
Clean Up After Your Dog: Carry waste bags and promptly clean up after your dog to maintain the cleanliness of public spaces.
Secure Pet-Friendly Lodging: Choose accommodations that are pet-friendly and provide the necessary amenities for your dog’s comfort.
Visit Off-Peak Hours: If you plan to explore busy areas, consider visiting during off-peak hours when it’s less crowded and more comfortable for your dog.
Health and Identification: Ensure your dog is up-to-date on vaccinations and has identification tags with your contact information. Carry copies of vaccination records.
Plan for Downtime: Remember that traveling can be tiring for your dog. Plan for breaks and downtime to allow them to rest and recharge.
Emergency Preparedness: Be prepared for emergencies by having the contact information of local veterinarians and emergency pet care facilities readily available.
Be Patient and Flexible: Traveling with a dog can be unpredictable. Be patient with your pet, and be prepared to adjust your plans to accommodate their needs and preferences.
Enjoy the Bond: Most importantly, savor the moments spent exploring Orlando with your dog. Capture memories, take leisurely walks, and cherish the companionship of your furry friend.

Orlando offers a mix of thrilling attractions and pet-friendly options, making it a memorable destination for travelers with dogs. With proper planning and consideration, you can create wonderful memories together in this sunny and vibrant city.

The post Traveling With Your Dog to Orlando, Florida: Pet-Friendly Flights, Hotels, Activities and More appeared first on iHeartDogs.com.

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