Adopting a rescue dog usually means visiting a shelter to pick out the perfect pooch, but a hotel in Orlando, FL is putting a new spin on pet adoption.
Thanks to a specially designed in-lobby dog house, Aloft Orlando Downtown recently launched a foster program aimed at getting more local dogs adopted into loving families. The hotel is working with the non-profit Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando, and they’ve already found homes for two shelter dogs in need.
Foster dog #1: Mavis, a five year old shih tzu mix. Found her forever home on May 24th, 2018!
The hotel’s Dog In Residence program is based off a similar idea formed in 2014 at Aloft Asheville Downtown hotel. It’s one of only 10 hotels across the country that plays an active role in fostering rescue dogs. While Aloft Asheville Downtown recently celebrated its 100th dog adoption, Aloft Orlando Downtown is already off to an impressive start.
It all started with a bushy-tailed Shih Tzu-mix named Mavis. The 13-pound pup arrived at the hotel on Wednesday where hotel guests, staff, and people from the community gathered to celebrate the launch of the foster program. Mavis posed with her adoring fans before being released to check out her temporary hotel digs.
The dog house where the hotel’s foster dogs will stay has a glass run where guests can interact with the dogs, and it’s complete with a miniature replica of the hotel. There’s also a private area where the dogs can go to get away from prying eyes, and hotel guests have the opportunity to sign up to take the resident dog on walks.
Mavis seemed to enjoy the break from shelter life, but she didn’t get to stay in the lobby’s dog house for long. After less than 24 hours as a foster dog, Mavis met her perfect family.
Geo Cuevas works at the hotel as the director of sales, and she and her family fell in love with Mavis right away. They even canceled their Memorial Day weekend travel plans so they could stay home and welcome their new dog into the family. She told the Orlando Sentinel,
“We just didn’t want to wait any longer to bring [Mavis] home.”
After Mavis walked out of the lobby with her new family, hotel staff started preparing for their next furry visitor. An 11-month-old Chihuahua named Suzani moved into the dog house on Saturday, but like her predecessor, she didn’t stay long. After a busy holiday weekend, the hotel announced on Monday that Suzani’s adoption was officially in the works.
They’re two for two so far, and Aloft Orlando Downtown is excited to continue their foster program. Not only are they helping dogs find new homes, they’re also spreading a message that adopting a pet isn’t always what you expect.
By setting up their dog house in the lobby, they’re reaching a population of people that might never think to visit a shelter. They may assume that shelters are sad and dirty and only have a certain kind of dog, but the hotel’s foster program is changing that. It’s helping Pet Alliance reach more people, it’s emptying kennels at the main Pet Alliance shelter, and it’s introducing dogs like Mavis and Suzani to families that will love them forever.
h/t: Orlando Sentinel
Featured image via Facebook/Aloft Orlando Downtwon
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