It’s time to get away for a much-needed vacation with everyone in the family, including your uber wonderful dog. You just can’t leave Bruno the Wonder Dog home alone, and boarding in a pet hotel isn’t on your list of preferences. Throughout the greater Sacramento area are some very pet-friendly places and hotels, motels and vacation rentals that welcome a variety of pets. Dogs are the most accepted pet in the “pet friendly” arena. There is generally an extra charge for Fido, but it usually isn’t too much. Allowing your loving dog to enjoy a little time away from home with the family is certainly worth the extra few dollars. With a little research, it’s pretty easy to find a place that will welcome you and yours with warmth, open arms, a doggie dish and some dog treats thrown into the deal.
Tahoma Meadows Bed and Breakfast
6821 W. Lake Blvd.
Tahoma, CA 96142
A group of rustic Tahoe cabins on the West Shore of Lake Tahoe, this B&B, run by Dick and Ulli White, welcomes well-behaved dogs and their humans. Six of these fantastic cabins are pet friendly. Not only will you be warmly embraced by the ambiance of your chosen cabin, your dog will have treats waiting as well. Each B&B cabin comes with a very complete and completely delicious breakfast in the main lodge. This isn’t boxed cereal and juice. It’s a full-bore mountain breakfast. Your dog must be friendly and cleared by Tahoma Meadows prior to your stay. Located just to the front of this special place is a paved trail that runs all the way to Tahoe City. Lake Tahoe is just across the street. From here to Tahoe City, there are several places to hike and to take your doggie to the shore of the lake. Tahoma Meadows is a great spot to launch from to explore Tahoe with your entire family, Fido included. There is an additional charge for your dog, but having the whole family together is what great memories are made of.
14255 Highway 88
Hope Valley, CA 96120
If a high-country getaway is what you fancy, this is the place for it. Located in one of the most magical spots in the Sierra, Sorensen’s has several cabins that are dog friendly. The resort, lovingly run by John and Patti Brissenden, is nestled among aspens, at the foot of a mountain ridge, across from the Carson River. In winter, cross country ski in Hope Valley with your dog joyfully bounding through the snow with you. Spring and summer calls for waking up to the fresh mountain air and heading out for a hike anywhere along Highway 88. Charity Valley, Emigrant Lake, Silver Lake or Meiss Meadow; take your pick. These are great hikes for you and your dog to explore. Head over to Tahoe, just about 30 minutes away, or take the road to Markleeville for more exploring. In autumn, hike and wander among the chaos of colors in the aspen groves that speckle this part of the Sierra. Sorensen’s has nine pet-friendly cabins. Just relaxing in your cabin may be one of the best perks of the whole deal.
Broad Street Inn
517 W. Broad St.
Nevada City, CA 95959
Steve and Valerie Moberg describe themselves as “…very dog friendly people.” Furry friends are most welcomed here. This historic building is part of the colorful history of Nevada City. At the top of Broad Street, it’s just a short walk to downtown Nevada City, which boasts dog-friendly patios among the many restaurants. A short walk from the Inn will find you and your four-footed friend hiking on two new trails. Close by is the South Fork of the Yuba River, which is a paradise all by itself. Fantastic rocks, pools for you and Fido to swim in and trails to explore make this a perfect place to visit. Nevada City has a wonderful train museum with quite a bit of history to it. Fan out along Highway 49 from here and enjoy foothill beauty at every turn. Broad Street Inn is a very comfortable base to start from and return to for you vacation with your pet, and the rest of the family too.
The Inn At Truckee
11506 Deerfield Drive
Truckee, CA 96161
High up in the Sierra, just off of I-80, Truckee offers a full bucket of year-round wonder. For about 150 years, Truckee has been a stop for travelers, trains, skiers, hikers and anyone with a bit of adventure in their hearts. The Inn At Truckee is within a short distance of Donner Lake, Lake Tahoe and all of the history and eclectic atmosphere of downtown Truckee. Once you and your four-legged friend get settled into your comfortable digs, it may take a bit of time to plan your stay. Just exploring the town of Truckee can easily take up a day. Take Bruno the Wonder Dog for a hike along the Truckee River or head for one of the many parks and trails that are scattered throughout the area. Go for a float in one of the lakes or head for the big one, Lake Tahoe. When the area is blanketed with snow, strap on the cross country skis or snowshoes and enjoy schussing in a wintery wonderland. All of that exploration will build up an appetite, and you’ll find dog-friendly restaurants with outdoor dining to refuel for another round of exploring.
Fern Grove Cottages
16650 River Road
Guerneville, CA 95446
A river, cottages, redwoods, the ocean, hikes and wine may be your heart’s desire. Go just a litter further with your pet buddy and head to Guerneville and the Fern Grove Cottages. Guerneville is in a unique spot that is easy to find and hard to leave. Giant redwoods are a sight to behold and a thrill to hike through at Armstrong Redwoods State Reserve. The Russian River is a perfect place to launch a canoe, furry friend on board, and explore an astonishing riparian wonderland. On the ocean side, Bodega Bay, Gualala and Jenner are on the menu for hikes, walks and general jaw-dropping relaxing. The town of Guerneville is a great walkable experience. Do all of this and much more from the comfort of your 1920′s restored cottage, surrounded by redwoods in an idyllic setting at Fern Grove Cottages. Expect personal attention, a fine continental breakfast and easy access to all of the grandeur of Sonoma County. Taking a break with your family pet in this blissfully awesome area will fill your camera and your heart with life-long memories.
Charles Ferris is a freelance writer who has lived in the Sierra, halfway between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe, for the last 37 years. He retired from teaching after 36 years in 2010. He and his wife hike, kayak, cross country ski, snow shoe, ride mountain bikes and road bikes, year round. His work can be found at Examiner.com.