This year, Valentine’s Day falls on a Friday. That gives lovebirds a long weekend to spend some quality time together and rekindle the romance. Ideally, your plans involve just you and your significant other — alone. However, there are times when it is neither possible nor desired to leave your four-legged children at home.

This might be the case if your dog doesn’t do well with strangers or if he’s a service dog. In these instances, how do you come up with dog-friendly Valentine’s day ideas that won’t cramp your style or leave your partner feeling like an involuntary step-parent? We have a few recommendations to get you started.

1. Book a Cabin

There is something about a winter cabin experience that is inherently romantic. A crackling fire, warm blankets and cuddling on the couch provide the perfect opportunity to focus on each other. Many cabin hosts also offer outdoor activities for you to enjoy together, such as skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing and even access to hot springs.

Before inviting Fido along, be sure to verify the rules with the host or manager. Some cabins do not allow dogs. Others allow dogs but might require that your pooch is crated when you leave the room. You might also get charged an additional cleaning fee. Calling ahead of booking and cleaning up exceptionally well after Fido is the best way to make the process go smoothly.

Fido does add some extra expenses and makes it more difficult for you to give each other your undivided attention. However, a weekend is plenty of time for you to enjoy private moments together and a well-trained pooch respects a closed door.

2. Rent an RV

If cabins aren’t being cooperative, then an RV is the next best thing. Some people might argue that renting an RV should have been a top choice all along. Recreational vehicles are becoming increasingly popular in America, compelling some people to give up their sticks-and-bricks homes to travel fulltime. RVs do come in many different types and sizes, so be sure to consider which one works best for you.

If you have access to a proper tow vehicle, consider anything from a small sleeper-camper to a large fifth wheel. What you rent should depend on the towing capacity of the vehicle. If you don’t have a tow vehicle, consider a camper van or a more traditional motorhome. When bringing a dog with you, it might be best to rent from private owners, such as via Outdoorsy or RVshare. They may have more lenient pet policies than large companies.

An RV gives you much more flexibility about where you stay and how you spend your weekend. However, it’s a good idea to plan your accommodations ahead of time. Even though you’re essentially bringing your own room, some campgrounds have rules about pets, so be sure to look into this as well.

3. Go Camping

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, if you haven’t already booked an RV or a cabin, it might be tough to find one. This is because lots of other people love those two getaway ideas. Another good option is a camping trip. If you’re a veteran of winter camping, then you can find plenty of spots around New England. If not, consider driving or flying to a southern state with warmer temperatures.

As is the case with an RV, remember to choose campgrounds ahead of time and verify rules related to pets. Some campgrounds with hiking trails allow dogs at the camp area but not on the trails. Others make it mandatory for dogs to go wherever pet parents go. Confusingly enough, some parks have both rules in place, making it impossible to leave Fido behind but also impossible to take him hiking. If you search around though, you’ll be able to find campgrounds that are more lenient.

Camping offers a wonderful opportunity to unplug and focus on each other. And, if you’re in really remote territory, you’ll probably feel much safer knowing your dog will sound the alarm if danger approaches or even rush to protect you.

Why Not Leave Your Dog at Home?

While bringing Fido along on Valentine’s Day trips may seem like the ultimate adventure, it’s important to remember the difference between romance and family time. So, whenever possible, it might be better to leave your dog at home for these special occasions with your significant other.

Pet sitters can check in on your dog for bathroom breaks, provide some company and take him on walks. This also helps to protect your home. Taking in your mail and pulling your emptied trash can back from the street are just some of the things pet sitters can do to keep your home looking occupied.

Do you need pet sitters for Valentine’s Day weekend? Dog Gon’ Good Time serves Saugus and the surrounding areas. Contact us at 781-780-4985 for more information about our rates and services.