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Topic: Living in a hotel with smuggled doves and rabbit
Message: Posted by: motivationalmagic (Jan 23, 2008 06:02PM)
We stayed in a hotel last week with our five doves, for five days. Geez, the doves and rabbit made such a mess. We didn't want to get kicked out, and we had to keep hushing the doves so they'd stop making such a raquet with all of the typical cooing.

Any experience in traveling with doves, and what to do about hotel rooms, other than bringing along a big cage (which is a hassle). I remember seeing somewhere that one of the dove videos had suggestions on constructing a portable cage for situations like this. Any experience with this?
Message: Posted by: g0thike (Jan 24, 2008 12:10AM)
Motel 6.

They are pet friendly. Less hassle.
Message: Posted by: Dave Scribner (Jan 24, 2008 05:55AM)
Many hotels are animal friendly and will allow you keep your animals with you if explain you are a magician. Others offer a special area in the hotel to house your friends during your stay.

Amos Levkovitch explains on his video how to convert the hotel bathroom into a small aviary for the birds. You can also construction a small cage out of chicken wire than you fold flat. It opens to a cage and you place another piece of wire on top. The mess will still be there though. I personally just prefer to bring a cage with me.
Message: Posted by: jaynet (Jan 24, 2008 09:33AM)
Motel 6 ugggghhhhhh.
Call the motels-hotels in the area you are going to
and find the pet friendly ones. Even in chains some hotels
will allow pets and some won't. I've had major agents/promoters
miss on this one. Do it yourself. Or get a camper/winnebago for the pets.
Message: Posted by: martini (Jan 24, 2008 11:49AM)
Greetings Motivationalmagic;
I remember back in the days when the wife and I used to tour,(God that makes me feel old now.lol) We used to open a dresser drawer and line it thick with newspaper, then close the drawer leaving about 1 inch open so they could get air.

I would follow others advice above about bringing a cage and seeking out pet friendly hotels, but just in case you run into a situation where you are not able to carry in a cage, a dresser drawer may be your ticket.
All the Best
Message: Posted by: Magic Enhancer (Jan 24, 2008 02:22PM)
"Amos Levkovitch explains on his video how to convert the hotel bathroom into a small aviary for the birds. You can also construction a small cage out of chicken wire than you fold flat. It opens to a cage and you place another piece of wire on top. The mess will still be there though. I personally just prefer to bring a cage with me."

Can you imagine the look on the cleaning ladie's (or man's) face when she walks into your bathroom and it's a jungle. LOL. That would be priceless.

I agree. Check into a pet-friendly hotel, but make sure you tell them they are caged. Some may not even charge you as much as dogs, cats ,etc. I don't use doves anymore because of the hassle.

RObert Haas
Message: Posted by: RobertBloor (Jan 24, 2008 03:32PM)
I find that most of the "no pets" rules typically intend to prevent damage from dogs and cats eating and messing the place into oblivion.

Most hotels I've contacted regarding a small bird in cage could care less provided it doesn't disturb other guests.

Call. Ask.

Message: Posted by: Bob Sanders (Jan 24, 2008 07:14PM)
Caged birds are not a real problem. Keeping them in the bathroom with the light OFF solves most of the problems. Putting a towel over the cage to make it dark helps too.

I never recommend keeping live doves in a storage area at a theater, theme park or hotel. Many have rat and mouse problems and those will kill doves.

Mine travel in a (please don't tell the doves) a cat carrier that is essentially solid wall anyway. There is plenty of ventilation but seeing inside takes effort. Things do not spill from the cage as long as it is upright.

Good luck!

Bob Sanders
Magic By Sander
Message: Posted by: Dave Scribner (Jan 24, 2008 07:14PM)
If you convert the bathroom into an aviary, you still need to do a certain amount of clean up each day to remove the droppings. Amos shows how to block out the light from any windows. Doves will go to sleep in the dark or at least become less active. It's a good idea to tell the housekeeping staff if you have done this so there are no surprises. Besides, if they open the door unawares, the doves are very likely to fly out into the main room which could create a larger mess than you started with.

The portable fold down cage is demonstrated on Tony Clark's unmasked II video. It is cheap and inexpensive.
Message: Posted by: Bob Sanders (Jan 24, 2008 08:09PM)
I have used the fold down cage and still have one. The problem with them for me is that they simply are not road worthy. For local shows and back home is fine but don't go out on the road for the week. They either break or lose their shape.

My actual favorite for local work is a homemade one that fits under the top shelf of my tables. It is made of 1/2"x1" welded wire and fastened with cagebuilders' clips. The perch is only about 2" off the floor. But even that helps keep tails clean.

That is one item to learn: NEVER use newspaper in the bottom of a dove cage unless stained tails don't matter. Lucy and I have a roll of butcher paper that has come in very handy. It has another problem however. It will not absorb liquids. For many years I used brown grocery sacks but those are rare now. There is always a partial roll of paper towels in my gear. Guess why?

Bob Sanders
Magic By Sander
Message: Posted by: Lou Hilario (Jan 25, 2008 08:13AM)
I used to smuggle my doves and duck in 5 star hotels. I keep them in the bathroom. Yes, I have to clean up the next day.
Nowadays, I don't do doves anymore but use parrots. They are more like kids and I look for an area in the hotel where I can keep (not smuggle) them. They are noisy when hungry.
Message: Posted by: Mumblemore (Jan 26, 2008 07:33PM)
Message: Posted by: gulamerian (Jan 27, 2008 12:37PM)
Most hotels are animal friendly if you explain you are a magician. We travel with six dogs and we have never had a problem.
Message: Posted by: Autumn Morning Star (Jan 27, 2008 05:31PM)
I bring dogs, cats, snakes, and birds into the nicest hotels in the country. If I can hide these critters onstage, surely, I can hide them as I enter a hotel. I use a collapsible carrier that fits in my suitcase. I got mine at the dollar store, but it is similar to one of these:


This one is at Target and even cheaper in cost:

Just put a carrier in your luggage and set it up when you get to the room. The critters, doves in your case, can go in "special safe places" until you are checked in. Like Bob Sanders says, darkness will keep them quiet.

Doves enjoy balancing from the shower rod with the appropriate papers spread under them and they love warm baths in the sink. I have not ever been caught with critters and I have spent a whole lot of time in hotels with mine. If I have to leave them in my room for a short while, I put them in their carrier and place the carrier in a darkened bathroom. Then I turn on the Nature Channel to make any "critter noise" seem normal.

Be bold, think like a magician, and have a good story line in case you do get caught!
Message: Posted by: RJE (Jan 28, 2008 09:55AM)
We also use a solid walled small dog carrier that has been converted with perches and water and food dishes. As Bob pointed out, this cuts down on any messes left.

The rabbits also each travel in their own small dog carrier. They are allowed to run around the room for short periods of time during our stay. A quick check for "presents" and there's very little mess.

We also try to only travel with female doves and this seems to keep the noise level down as well.

Message: Posted by: Mr.Dennis (Jan 28, 2008 10:45AM)
Try one of these....6 drawers, lightweight, cleans up fast. I even use it back stage. I don't like going from a pet carrier directly to a body loads.
Message: Posted by: Gordon (Jan 29, 2008 10:51AM)
Hang the "do not disturb" sign on your door when you leave to discourage the housekeepers, too.
Message: Posted by: motivationalmagic (Jan 30, 2008 01:08PM)
Thank you everyone for all of these fabulous ideas! Yet another reason why I love the Magic Café so very much!
Message: Posted by: Ryan Price (Jun 1, 2012 01:53PM)
I thought I would bring this topic back to life as I am spending a couple weeks on the road this summer and my bunny is coming along. I phoned a hotel that I wanted to stay at that has a pet policy of charging $10.00 a night. I emailed the general manager and asked if they could wave the majority of the fee as I would be there 5 nights.
This is the reply I got :" Thanks for dropping me a line…unfortunately I do not change the charges based on the type of pet. It is the same for snakes, pot belly pigs, hamsters, dogs, cats, and now the first rabbit. We sometimes have the rooms out of order for 2 days after the guest and pet have checked out due to the deep cleaning that takes place. Sorry I cannot do anything except offer you the same as my other pet friendly guests."

Out of order for 2 days? What will they have to paint the room because a rabbit was in there? I figure I would ask for the discount as I would be spending $700 with them. For not working with me on $50 they lost $700.
Message: Posted by: 1906Alpha1906 (Jun 1, 2012 03:44PM)
Hi Ryan - its a nice point you brought up, however, I can understand where the General Manager is coming from. Its the deep cleaning part. My wife is highly allergic to dog hairs, cat hairs, and fur. It causes her breathing problems, and then her eyes itch and swell. Even AFTER the pet is gone. Any hairs cause issue with her. When our friends that have pets come to our house (without their pets), my wife still knows that they have a pet because her eyes start to itch, and she can't breathe. Its the hairs left behind that cause the reaction. So, in a motel room, if there are animals hairs left behind and the next guest is highly allergic to those type of things, it can cause problems, and a lawsuit to the company, so they probably have to charge for an extra deep cleaning after the pet is gone. This is why they like to know if you have a pet or not, to protect themselves. Sneaking a pet in can be done, however, if they find out, and something happens, they will come back to you, and you probably don't want that hassle. You paying that extra fee is like an insurance for yourself relieving you of any damage done, so if the hotel DID know about the animal, and they didn't clean properly, then its their fault, not yours....

I know if I and my wife went to a room, and suddenly she was having an asthma attack, and find out there was a dog on the bed that wasn't cleaned properly or dog hairs all over the carpet, she or I wouldn't be too happy about that. Its not a life-threatening thing for her, but it can be for some people...My animals stay in their own house out in the backyard for that very reason. *smile* My kids seem to have the same allergies as my wife when it comes to cats and dogs too...

Just my 2 cents on that...

Better safe than sorry *smile*

Message: Posted by: Ryan Price (Jun 1, 2012 03:59PM)
I do understand the fee. But at what point does it become just a cash grab? Are they doing that much more of a clean up if you are there for two nights or 4 nights? That is my main concern with this.

I ended up booking a hotel that didn't mind not charging the fee.
Message: Posted by: 1906Alpha1906 (Jun 1, 2012 05:37PM)
Cash Grab - love the term! *haha* Who knows....its their business, so I guess they can do what they want, right? Whether or not they do good business or not is another story, but it is their business. Sucks sometimes, but que cera cera....

Glad you got a place though....would be aweful to sleep on the street and perform for that many days without a shower! *LOL*
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Jun 1, 2012 05:44PM)
Well, if by "deep clean" he means calling the carpet cleaners, then he is still losing money without a "special deal" with companies like Stanley Steamer.

I am sorry, animals cost money, apartment housing is charging additional for having a pet. It is the way as the world changes.
Message: Posted by: Dave Scribner (Jun 1, 2012 08:01PM)
Ryan, you have to remember that not all animal owners are going to be careful with their pets in the room. Some owners might let their animal roam free outside of the cage most of the time. That means more hair being shed directly on carpets, and/or possible fecal matter and urine which can stain a carpet. Hotel owners don't know you from Adam and they have to protect themselves. The longer the pet is in the room, the more difficult it may be to clean up.

Actually $10 a night isn't really a bad price when you stop to think that a good deep cleaning of carpets could cost the hotel several hundred dollars.

Some hotels will allow you to keep your animal in a special area eliminating the problem.
Message: Posted by: Ryan Price (Jun 1, 2012 10:24PM)
This is extremely funny to me as this topic originally started with people wanting to sneak animals and not paying any fee or even notifying staff they have animals. Now it seems like Im being ganged up on for not wanting to pay the whole fee as I would be there for 5 days and paying around $700 in just the room rate before the $50.00 fee is added then taxes on top of that.

I really doubt any hotel would be steaming the carpets every time an animal is in the room, otherwise they would be loosing so much money that they would adopt a no animal policy.

I use the term cash grab because at some point there is a balance and every dollar after that it is all about the money. If someone wanted to book you for an event and then someone else wanted to book you for a week of shows wouldn't you give the one that wanted the whole week a price break?

The one hotel lost my business and the other one gained it and I have more money in my pocket and thus more profit so I will be smiling all the way to the bank.
Message: Posted by: Dave Scribner (Jun 2, 2012 06:19AM)
Ryan, I think you're taking the discussion wrong. We're not ganging up on you at all. Although the title of the topic is about smuggling animals, the original poster talked about the mess his animals made in the room and was looking for solutions. When you resurrected the topic, you weren't talking about smuggling either but rather why the hotel wanted to charge a fee or animals.

I think the issue is that the longer someone stays in a room, the more intense the cleaning has to be when they leave. I'm sure you've seen regular daily maid service. A quick make up of the bed, vacuum and clean the bathroom. When you actually check out, they strip beds, and do a much better job of cleaning. They have to do that because of health regulations. They are really just protecting themselves against the guests that aren't as careful with their animals as you may be.

Granted, a rabbit in a cage is going to create much less mess than several birds spreading dander etc but the hotel manager must treat everyone the same. You can't expect him to have a policy that says, birds no or a fee, rabbits ok, snakes and lizards a different fee, dog and cats a high fee etc. It's an animal fee. Also, many people are allergic to animal hair etc. What happens if the maid assigned to your room is one of those people? Now the hotel must redo the cleaning assignements and that is an inconvenience to them. Nothing is free in this world and fees are often charged when changes are necessary in certain circumstances, and again, I don't thing $10 a night is really bad at all.

I'm sticking up for hotels in any way, just pointing out some of the reasons why a fee may be charged.
Message: Posted by: Ryan Price (Jun 2, 2012 09:17AM)
A good General Manager would have found a way to make the fee disappear with the room rate going down or adding a benefit. They lost out on a room being filled all week by not playing ball for less than 10% of the total fee.

As "Alpha" suggested privately to me maybe I will try to get a discount on the room as opposed to trying to get around the fee from now on. The current hotel I have booked for that week actually gave me a special deal for the whole week and also didn't charge for the animal fee.

If it has only been 1 night at a place I have usually gone with Motels with outside room access from the parking spot and just brought him in.

Oh the joys of working with animals.
Message: Posted by: Dave Scribner (Jun 2, 2012 02:20PM)
Well, I could be wrong but I'll bet he didn't lose a weeks rental. If he'd been concerned about that, he may have made a deal with you but obviously he has no shortage of guests so he can afford to hold his policies.
Message: Posted by: Ryan Price (Jun 2, 2012 05:31PM)
It would be nice if every room he has is full every day of the year. But I doubt that in the city I'm performing. Many places have special deals for multiple nights obviously this one doesn't. Oh well.
Message: Posted by: tropicalillusions (Jun 3, 2012 11:13AM)
We have had plenty of days of smuggling. Carts with cloth covers and wheeling them right by the front desk, with hopes of no one squaking. Definately the do not disturb sign, and tv being up a bit. doves in the closet to muffle some noise when to bright. lots of clean up after the shows and before we leave to dispose of evidence.... you never know when you may return..LOL Know we have the trailer with heating and Air while on the grounds. if we are traveling and we cant hook up to electric while stpping for the night..... then in they come, unless the weather is just right with the temperatures, then they can stay in their cages in the Trailer with plenty of ventilation and care. Lots of times we plan our trips with stays at the cabins at KOA. this way plenty of electric available for air conditioner and heater. and we can stay in cabin. Traveling with animals,,, aint it fun!!
Message: Posted by: ThatsJustWrong! (Jun 4, 2012 07:56AM)
On 2012-06-03 12:13, tropicalillusions wrote:
Traveling with animals,,, aint it fun!!

I'm guessing you've never been on a national tour of a Broadway show ;) Talk about rooms needing a deep cleaning after...