Look, I can suspend my disbelief as much as the next guy, but I am having a seriously hard time accepting the concept of the new DreamWorks/Nickelodeon movie “Hotel for Dogs.”
A hotel for dogs??! Now I’ve heard everything!
First of all, I question the need for such a thing. Dogs generally don’t do a lot of traveling. They usually stick pretty close to home. Sure, you have the occasional “Incredible Journey”-type story, where a dog is walking across the country to find its owner, and I’m sure pooches in that situation would be grateful for a hotel to stay in. But are there really enough dogs making journeys like that to support an entire industry? Whoever is behind this “hotel for dogs” ought to do some more number-crunching.
But for the sake of argument, let’s say there is a demand for a dog hotel. How on earth do these hoteliers expect a dog to pay for a room? The vast majority of dogs are unemployed and have no steady source of income, let alone disposable income to be used on luxury items such as travel and leisure. And it’s just as well that they don’t, considering they don’t have pockets and would have no place to keep their money.
So presumably the “hotel for dogs” will operate on some sort of barter system. A guest of the hotel will bring something the hotelier wants, and he or she will trade it for a room. This seems reasonable. But there are still many logistical problems to work out.
Movie review: “Hotel for Dogs” (2009) B-
For example, how will the dogs access their individual rooms? As mentioned, dogs don’t have pockets, so they’d be unable to keep track of room keys — and that’s aside from the fact that a dog, lacking opposable thumbs, would find it difficult to operate a key anyway. And it would be inadvisable to simply let the dogs all sleep together in one big common room, as the mixing of breeds and temperaments could lead to disaster. There’s also the matter of un-neutered and un-spayed dogs mingling with fixed ones. Not that it’s a hotel’s responsibility to promote safe sexual behavior among its guests, but surely putting everyone together in one big room is just asking for trouble.
Would only housebroken dogs be permitted to stay at this hotel? And how would the hotel verify such a thing? For that matter, even if housebroken dogs are the only guests allowed, who will let them out to do their business?
If all these problems can be worked out, though, then a hotel for dogs might be just what Fido needs. Room service would consist of table scraps, accompanied by bowls of toilet water. Each room could be furnished with garbage already strewn across the floor for guests to roll around in. The TVs could all be old black-and-white models (since dogs don’t see in color anyway), and would only need to be tuned to Animal Planet. That would save on costs right there.
But no, I’m sorry, I just can’t get past some of the obvious flaws in the plan. Is this “hotel for dogs” owned and operated by other dogs, or by humans? If it’s dogs, that opens a whole other set of problems, not the least of which is applying for a business license. Dogs have only a rudimentary grasp of the English language and cannot write at all, so I don’t see this ever getting off the ground. Sorry, “Hotel for Dogs,” but I’m not buyin’ it.