Hotels could be barking up the wrong tree by banning animals from their sites, as new research shows the travel industry is losing out on money from doting pet owners.
Brits are skipping holidays due to the hassle and guilt of leaving their pets behind, according to Mercure Hotels.
Mercure calculated that banning furry guests from rooms is costing hotels a potential £324m, as potential customers choose to stay at home with their pets instead.
A survey of 2,000 pet-owners found that a third of them have passed up the chance to go away on holiday due to lack of pet-friendly accommodation.
Two in five respondents also confessed to feeling guilty about leaving their pets when they travel, while 37 per cent said they would take more trips if they could bring animals with them.
Pets were an even bigger concern than work, as 37 per cent worried that their pets would miss them while on holiday, whereas only 10 per cent were anxious about not being at their jobs in that time.
Mercure is positioning itself at the forefront of pet-friendly accommodation in order to tap into the market potential of the estimated 11.9 million pet-owners in the UK.
The hotel chain has launched a package for canine visitors which lets owners keep their dogs with them.
One Warwickshire branch is also offering a gourmet dogfood menu for discerning pooches.