Solo travel can be pretty lonely. You can go several long days without having a meaningful conversation with someone, and there’s nobody to keep you warm when you go back to your hotel room at the end of the day.
But that doesn’t have to be the case. One hotel in Mississippi is letting its guests “foster” dogs during their stay.
The Home 2 Suites in Biloxi, Mississippi teamed up with the Humane Society of South Mississippi for its “Fostering Hope” program. The hotel (which typically welcomes extended-stay travelers) has dog kennels in its lobby for a selection of four-legged friends for guests of the two-legged variety.
But the program isn’t just for the guests’ enjoyment — the bigger aim is to find forever homes for the dogs. If a guest decides they’d like to adopt the dog, they can fill out an application and pay a $50 fee to the hotel concierge. And if the guests are still staying at the hotel, the dog can move right into their new owner’s hotel room.
However, the hotel can refuse an adoption if they see fit. “(We) may tell them we don’t feel comfortable, come visit our shelter tomorrow and we’ll find one that is right,” Bianca Janik, relations manager at the shelter, told USA Today.
When it comes to deciding which dogs will be best for housing at the Home 2 Suites, the shelter takes care to select dogs that are calmer, less reactive, and suited for life in a busy hotel.
This week, the hotel shared a picture on Facebook of Chauvo, their very first “adoption baby” who found his forever home in October 2018.
Like all of the adopted dogs, Chauvo was sent to his new home with up-to-date vaccinations, microchip, updated medical evaluations and procedures, including spay/neutering, and preventative heartworm medication.
“Fostering Hope,” which was set up by Homes 2 Suites in October 2018, has now paired 33 guests with adopted dogs.
“[The hotel has] a lot of transient guests who stay for months at a time near our army and navy bases and that’s just enough time to fall in love with a dog,” said Janik. “It was a very out-of-the-box way to find our animals new homes so we were on board.”
Another adopted dog, Spot (aka Fergus), went back to the hotel for a visit in November. “This sweet little Dachshund mix was adopted back in January by Laura and Greg from Tennessee,” wrote the hotel on their Facebook page. “Fergus is happy, healthy and very loved. Thanks for bringing back a sweet memory for our team.”
Time to roll this out nationwide, right?