Category Archives: Dog Friendly

Welcoming our latest unconventional staff member.

The Inn On First is excited to welcome their newest staff member, Maxwell Black. He is an unconventional employee, as he is a miniature schnauzer, but he is an integral part of the team and important to the service provided to guests.

Maxwell Black was an abandoned puppy, and The Inn on First adopted him in December from the Northern California Miniature Schnauzer Rescue.  Admittedly we were a bit unsure of what to expect, but we found this 1 1/2 year old dog to be lovable and a great addition to the family.  He has been welcomed as an important member of the staff and we know you will welcome him, too.  Along with Hugo Boss and Calvin Klein, The Inn on First’s other two miniature schnauzers, Maxwell Black interacts with the guests daily and is a source of pleasure for those who love dogs. Many guests who have left their own dogs behind during their trip are appreciative of the canine attention Maxwell Black can give them.

Maxwell 2013

Maxwell Black’s gentle demeanor is an invitation for those in need to find tenderness, peace and joy in their day. As a dog-friendly inn, The Inn on First believes Maxwell Black’s presence will provide great pleasure to guests and staff members alike for years to come, as well as encourage others to adopt abandoned dogs in need in their own communities.

It’s a dog’s life….here at The Inn On First!

I never understood why people grieved so deeply for their pets until I had to let go of one this week.  Here at The Inn On First we have had the privilege of sharing our 3 furry friends, Oscar de la Renta, Hugo Boss, and Calvin Klein, with all of our guests.  Oscar, the oldest, came into our lives when he was six years old.  A “champion” we were told, but once we got him home he didn’t know any commands: sit, down, come.  He would just stare at you.  So we called the breeder and asked her about his champion status.  “Oh,” she said, “he is a champion for his looks, not for obedience.”  Great, a pretty boy.

Eight years later he did come to understand “sit” but only if a treat was in hand, and generally would answer to “come” when breakfast or dinner was ready, and he never really took to “down” no matter how many treats were in hand.  A pretty boy he remained.

To all of our guests who visited here: if you ever held one of our dogs in your lap like a baby, on his back, belly up, and rubbed his tummy- that was Oscar.  If you stopped rubbing he gave you that piteous stare, until the hand moved over the belly once more.  He favored ladies over gentlemen, and often would just curl up on a female guest’s lap and rest his head on her breast.  Even to the point where he was unwilling to come back with us into the house.  We’d practically have to pry him off her lap.  If you were lucky, before he left your lap, he’d give you kisses to thank you for the attention.  We called him Munchkin, Oscaruni, Lover Boy, and in the last year Little Old Man.

He had Cushing’s Disease, a form of cancer, that worked on his liver and his brain, slowing things down for him daily.  The vet had told us: “No more than two days of not eating.  That’s when you call me.”  When Jamie went to an East Coast wedding last week and Oscar stopped eating during that week, I begged him to wait until Tuesday, when Jamie would return.  Sure enough, he went back to eating until Monday.  On Tuesday Jamie returned home and by Wednesday he was gone.  Can’t thank him enough for holding on a few extra days for Jamie’s return.  Can’t say enough how much we will miss him.

Thank you, to all of you, who ever made him feel welcome, comfortable, taking the time to say hello to him, and caring for him this past year through his aging process.  Thanks, too, for all the love, support, and compassion given to us via messages and hugs here at the inn.

Oscar leaves behind his nephew, Calvin, who has many of his pretty boy looks (black/white), but none of that pretty boy charm.  Oh, you all know Calvin, our seven year old, the one who wants to announce to the world that there are people in the yard.  Yes, the one we tell you to ignore and keep walking as he will immediately stop talking.  And don’t forget Hugo, who turned ten today, who loves to chase the tennis ball, and knows if you’ve been here before when he makes this low sounding funny begging sound in his effort to see you and reconnect with you once more.  He is distinctive in his single color (black) and his friendly demeanor.  Our Welcoming Ambassador for all guests, both new and old alike.  Even amid our sadness at Oscar’s loss, we are happy knowing that it is still a dog’s life here at The Inn On First where you can enjoy the company of our little family of furry friends.

Dog-friendly wine tour driver and trainer!

Woof!  Are we excited about Dan Cartwright, dog trainer and now wine tour driver in the Napa Valley.  You no longer need to leave your dog behind when you visit us here at The Inn On First.  Dan will take you and your dogs along for the ride, customizing the wineries to your needs and to your dogs’ needs, too.  Yes, he’ll even do a little training for your pooches while you sip and enjoy your wine in the Napa Valley.  The name of the company is Good Dog Wine Tours, and we are more than happy to schedule your pickup here at the inn.  Dan charges $50/hour per couple and their dogs.  You can bring along up to 2 additional human guests at $10/pp per hour.  Minimum 4 hours.  And yes, Water and Tennis Balls are included.