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April 3, 2013


Pet Friendly Holidays in Ireland

by Julianne Mooney
Photo Credit: Aghadoe Heights Hotel

Photo Credit: Aghadoe Heights Hotel

I’ve had animals all my life. Cats, dogs, fish, guinea pigs and birds, most of which were found in some sort of distress, rescued, returned to full health and never left.Things haven’t changed much. We have two cats, both of which were left (in separate circumstances) to the elements, only a few weeks old and little chance of survival. However, with a little TLC both Bernard and Olive are alive and well and best buddies. We’d be lost without them and when we go travelling, we miss them terribly.

Unfortunately, cats don’t travel well, but other four-legged friends do. Dogs. Many owners don’t want to leave their dogs behind, they’re part of the family after all and not to mention the kennel fees.

Bernard & Olive

Nowadays , hotels have adjusted rules and allow dogs on their premises, some even roll out the red carpet for the little pooches. Dog beds, toys and even doggie menus are being provided so that your little friend gets a proper holiday too.

This morning on Ireland AM, I discussed dog friendly accommodation around Ireland and it would appear there’s plenty out there!

Tips When Bringing Your Pet On Holidays

  • When booking the accommodation clarify how ‘pet friendly’ the accommodation is. Are the dogs allowed in the room or are they accommodated in kennels? And do they charge. This seems to vary from free and up to €35 per night.
  • Do you need to bring bedding for your pet? To be honest, it’s generally better to bring their own bedding as it’s more familiar for the pet.
  • Plan the route you’ll take to your destination, incorporating stops to let your pet stretch his/her legs.
  • Check if there are suitable walks in the area you are visiting. Many beaches and walkways have restricted dog access, so talk with your host and find out about suitable walks in the area.


Carbery Cottage Guest Lodge, Co. Cork 

Beautifully located in Durrus on the Sheepshead Peninsula, overlooking Dunmanus Bay, Carbery Guest Lodge sits on 4 acres of land and welcome dogs. Pets can sleep in your room at a cost of €5 per night, but check their website as this fee is often waived with special offers. There are also plenty of walks in the area that you can take your dog, but you do need to keep your dogs on a leash at the lodge, but this is the case in most hotels etc.

Room Cost from €40pps per night


Belle Isle, Co. Fermanagh 

Photo Credit: Belle Isle, Fermanagh

Photo Credit: Belle Isle, Fermanagh

This stunning property is surrounded by lakes and woodland and offers self-catering accommodation for all the family. There is also a cookery school on the grounds, boats for hire, fishing and beautiful walks in the area. They are pet-friendly although animals do need to be kept on a lead when outside the house and if you’ve taken over the main castle the pets can stay there with you also. They just ask that the dogs stay downstairs and don’t venture up into the  bedrooms in the cottages. There is no charge for your dog’s stay!

Houses from €80 per night


I was very surprised at the number of hotels who offer dog friendly facilities, particularly 4 and 5 star properties, but it seems dogs can go 5 star too these days!

Harvey’s Point, Donegal 

This 4 Star hotel located on the shores of Lough Eske, just 6kms from Donegal town, is a pet friendly hotel. Your dog has the option to stay in a Lakeshore suite, where rooms open up onto the garden and lake, or in the rooms on the first floor of the hotel. The pets stay in the room with you and bedding can be provided upon request and there is no additional cost for their stay. Obviously, there are rules – dogs must be kept on leads and are not allowed into the food and beverage areas.

 Room Cost From €59pps per night B&B

Aghadoe Hotel, Killarney, Co. Kerry 

Photo Credit: Aghadoe Heights

Photo Credit: Aghadoe Heights

Located overlooking Killarney Lakes, this 5 star hotel takes their title as a pet friendly hotel very seriously. The hotel welcomes small dogs (unfortunately larger dogs have to be housed in nearby kennels) and on arrival you receive a Doggy Welcome Pack in the room – a dog bed, water/food bowl, bottle of water, pet toy and welcome card from Louis the resident dog! There is also the Doggy Menu, a book of walks in the area and the rooms open out onto the garden.

Pooch’s Paradise Package from €169 per room per night

 Ireland’s Blue Book Pet Friendly Hotels 

Photo Credit: Tankardstown House

Photo Credit: Tankardstown House

Ireland’s Blue Book has some of the countries finest hotels, many of which allow dogs.


Twelve Hotel, Galway

Ardilaun Hotel, Galway

Fitzgerald’s Vienna Woods Hotel, Glenmire, Cork 


9 Comments Post a comment
  1. Apr 4 2013

    Currarevagh House, a four-star country house also in the blue back and located on Lough Corrib outside Oughtarard is also dog-friendly – we just came back from a lovely stay there.

  2. Tim
    Apr 5 2013

    Hi Julianne, I hope you and yours are well, Colm and I found this place near the North Coast which is very dog friendly and a great base for anyone wanting to explore the Giant’s Causeway – we always stay in Poet’s Corner which is amazing, Tim (ex-Eireann) X

  3. Bob
    Jul 18 2013

    I have a pet dog. He’s been with us since he was a month old. We’ve had to cancel so many outings just because we couldn’t leave him behind alone and there was no proper way to take him with us. So, we look for dog friendly accommodation in Ireland so that we don;t have to be worried of him getting fed. He also likes it an jumps into the car when he sees the bags and suitcases loaded in the car.
    Funny how quickly he gets ready for a vacation for any place. 😛

    • Aug 7 2013

      That’s very cute! I can’t get over how many places now takes dogs, it’s fantastic! Although, the most dog friendly place I’ve ever been is the Lake District in Cumbria. It’s fantastic.

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