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Hotel for Dogs Movie Review

Updated on March 12, 2014
Image by Jose Fernando Carli.
Image by Jose Fernando Carli. | Source

Most children love dogs. But I have mixed feelings about them. I totally adore puppies. I remember as a child that we have a female dog that gave birth to 6 puppies and they were so cute. But I am also terrified of dogs - especially the ferocious ones. I could still remember some of those times that I almost got bitten by a dog. I was lucky, I guess, that I was able to evade them.

When it comes to dog movies, I am simply a big fan of them. They usually depict the lovable traits of dogs such as being witty and loyal though playful. Some of my favorites are the 101 Dalmatians, Air Bud, Hachiko, Beethoven, Lady and the Tramp parts 1 and 2.

When I saw the Weekly Inspiration Topic a few weeks ago about Dog Rescue and Adoption, I thought about one dog movie I watched, Hotel for Dogs which somehow promoted dog rescue and adoption.

MOVIE FACTS: Hotel for Dogs - No Stray Gets Turned Away

  • Children's comedy film
  • Nickelodeon Film distributed by DreamWorks
  • Directed by Thor Freudenthal
  • Starring Johnny Simmons, Emma Roberts, Jake T. Austin, Lisa Kudrow, Kevin Dillon, Kyla Pratt, and Don Cheadle
  • Released January 16, 2009
  • Budget $75 million
  • Box Office Gross $117 million

Hotel for Dogs

The movie is about two siblings named Andi and Bruce who were put in foster care. They have a pet dog named Friday, which they had to hide from their foster parents because they do not like dogs.

One day, Friday got caught by animal control and was brought to the shelter. Andi and Bruce looked for Friday but can't find it. David, a pet store manager and Heather, an employee in the pet store, told them to try and look for Friday in the local pound. They did so and found Friday but had to bribe one officer to release Friday.

On the way home, they found an abandoned hotel which Friday entered into and discovered two dogs. Andi and Bruce decided to leave Friday there together with the other dogs. They just returned the next day to bring the dogs some food. Heather found out what they were doing and told them that she wanted to help.

Bruce built some cool contraptions in the hotel for the dogs and they also took in all the stray dogs they found in the neighborhood. Bruce gave all the dogs their names and wrote them down in an old hotel guest registry. But this set-up was short-lived because the animal control discovered the dogs and took them all to the pound to be killed. The kids were taken by the social worker, Bernie, and separated from each other to be put in separate foster homes.

But Andi found Bruce and together with Dave and Heather made plans to free the dogs. They got them out of the pound and was leading them to go somewhere safe. But the dogs did not follow them and instead went to the hotel.

This commotion led the police, the crowd, the media and the animal control to go into the hotel. Bernie, the kids' social worker, was already there beforehand and saw what the kids did. He told everyone who the kids were and what they had done to care for the dogs. Andi and Bruce were orphaned kids and they took the stray dogs, rescued and adopted them and created their own family. Bernie called some of the dogs by name and read the accompanying short history of the how the dogs were found from the old hotel guest registry. Everyone was amused as the dogs responded to the call of their name.

This was a touching scene. The children who needed the rescuing and adoption, in turn, rescued and adopted stray dogs. The movie byline says "No Stray Gets Turned Away." Andi and Bruce had been to several foster homes already, obviously they didn't like the experience and so they created their own family, even that of dogs. They didn't want to have any stray dogs turned away as they had been.

Eventually, Bernie and wife, Carol, decided that they would adopt Andi and Bruce themselves. Because of the turn of events, the dogs were no longer taken to the local pound to be killed. Instead, the hotel was renovated and turned into a hotel for dogs with dog salon, restaurant, massage services, etc, run by the kids and the trained dogs.

The Challenge

In this movie, children, Andi and Bruce, were portrayed to have a particular liking for dogs, but not just pet dogs from the pet store but rescue dogs. They didn't mind the trouble and sacrifice they faced just to rescue and adopt dogs in their own little ways. This challenges the adults to have the same love and compassion for rescue dogs.

Below are some resource pages on the reasons for adopting rescue dogs, tips and things to consider and more. Hope you find them helpful.

Rescue Me!

Image by Sue Byford
Image by Sue Byford | Source

Would you adopt a rescue dog instead of buying a pet dog from the pet store?

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    • Chin chin profile image

      Chin chin 5 years ago from Philippines

      That's wonderful bodylevive. Dogs can really become like family members.

    • bodylevive profile image

      BODYLEVIVE 5 years ago from Alabama, USA

      I have a rescue dog and she is part of our family too. I have two dogs, Eragon and Squeaky. I wrote hubs about them. Eragon's hub is: My Pet Is A Dog and Squeaky's hub is: I Found Love Just In Time. We love them and they are what we call our children.

    • Chin chin profile image

      Chin chin 5 years ago from Philippines

      That's good Raptorcat. Rubbing dog tummies - I used to that too when we still had pet dogs. But now, we can't because our residence does not allow it. Thanks for reading.

    • Raptorcat profile image

      Raptorcat 5 years ago from North Lauderdale, FL

      Actually, we have 2 of our own; one that was a "free to a good home and the second, a rescue.

      The second one got us on the list for fostering for our local Pekingese rescue group and we are currently fostering a totally adorable 10 yo Peke that loves his tummy rubs.