8 "Spooktacular" Vacation Rentals That Welcome Fido

Posted by Billy Francis

This article was updated in September 2021.

This Halloween, you and your pooch are cordially invited to spend the night in the presence of a “pawtergeist.” Guests report having to sleep with one eye open at these haunted, pet-friendly vacation rentals, which include a mansion frequented by paranormal investigators and an off-grid vehicle featured on the big screen. Fido beware, you’re in for a scare!

Want to host guests with dogs in your own haunted house? Apply to become an Airbnb host today.

1. Zombie-Free Adventure

Kimberly, AL
Fido will be safe here. Photo by Airbnb

Grab your cache and bug out with your best friend to a post-apocalyptic bolt hole in Kimberly, Alabama. Complete with dried zombie blood on the window, this off-grid UNIMOG vehicle is so authentic it’s been used as a prop in "The Hunger Games" and "The Walking Dead." When you pull up and park by the goat pen, you and your pup will be evacuated by ATV to a secret location somewhere in the woods of this secluded, 105-acre eco retreat. Be sure to keep an eye out for zombies in the woods and an ear out for rustling in the trees when you use the outdoor shower. If you think it's safe to make a move, your hosts will drive you up river and you can tube back with your pooch. For a more relaxing day, bring your rods and fish in the Locust Fork River, or warm your chilled bones around the fire pit.

2. Rainier Schoolhouse

Mineral, WA
Class is in session, Fido. Photo by Airbnb

Located 18 miles from Mt. Rainier, Rainier Schoolhouse has everything you need for a spooky school stay: long halls, original fixtures and fittings and, of course, wooden rocking chairs in otherwise empty classrooms. The former elementary school was built in 1910 but was destroyed by fire and had to be rebuilt in 1947. Described by your host as being gently haunted, previous guests report the sighting of a ghostly girl wandering the halls, stealing keys and startling them with loud noises. Shake off the heebie-jeebies and go kayaking on the nearby fishing lake. Kayaks are provided free of charge.

3. The Enslin Haunted Mansion

Troy, NY
Who else is staying at the haunted mansion? Photo by Airbnb

The Enslin Haunted Mansion is a sixth-generation family home in Troy, formerly the historical village of Lansingburgh. Paranormal investigators who have visited the stately mansion have concluded that some members of the family decided not to leave when they departed this world. Pranks from poltergeists are commonplace, like keys being moved and objects showing up in odd places (sounds like something Fido might do). During the day, have a BBQ and play fetch on the lovely lawn outside, before the mood turns a little eerie inside after sunset. Don't be surprised if you hear footsteps scurrying across the hardwood floors or the cast-iron bed creaking in the moonlight.

4. Captain Grant’s Historic Inn

Preston, CT
Pet-friendly and ghost-friendly. Photo by Airbnb

Constructed in 1754, Captain Grant’s Historic Inn by Captain William Grant, this handsome home in Poquetanuck Village is located in front of the village’s first cemetery. It's also across the road from St. James Cemetery, which is where Mercy Adelaide Avery is buried. To this day, Grant’s wife is said to hang around the inn, waiting for her husband to return home after being lost at sea. The National Historic Inn’s paranormal reputation doesn't detract from it being a great holiday destination for you and your hound. Share breakfast on the porch together, hang out in the pristine 4-acre garden, then warm Fido’s paws in one of the five bedrooms with a fireplace.

5. Shamrock House

Sunset, SC
Cozy or creepy? Let your dog decide. Photo by VRBO

Two years after Shamrock House was built in the woods of South Carolina in 1925, tragedy struck. Party guest Nancy took an overdose of pills in an upstairs bedroom after being informed that her preacher father was coming to take her home. Nancy is said to still walk the halls, with guests reporting cold spots in the house even on hot summer days and unexplained footsteps pacing down the halls. Leave Nancy on her own for a while and explore the town of Sunset with Fido. Raven Rock Loops Trail is just over 4 miles and leads to stunning views over Lake Keowee.

6. The Desert View Tower

Jacumba, CA
Far from civilization. Photo by Airbnb

During the early 20th century, travelers passing through the In-Ko-Pah Mountains just north of the Mexican border needed somewhere to pause to allow their motor vehicles to cool down. That's where The Desert View Tower came in. The historic landmark is set on 99 private acres, and the tower itself was built using planks from Old Plank Road, the predecessor to US 80. Also located on the property is Boulder Park, carved into granite by an engineer during the Great Depression. When the desert sun finally sets, curl up with your pooch and keep an ear out for the other residents. Desert View Tower is thought to be haunted, and paranormal investigators have recorded a number of Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) readings here. Dogs are welcome as long as they don’t mind hanging out with the four-legged friends on the property.

7. Fleur De Lis Mansion

New Orleans, LA
“Is that a duck? Or the ghost of a duck?” Photo by @fleurdelismansi

Restored to its former glory after years of disrepair, Fleur De Lis Mansion is one of many haunted houses in New Orleans. After reports of three haunted suites by the new owners, paranormal investigators at Ghost City Tours concluded that the spirit of a man called Billy is a permanent resident of the house. He’s known to be more mischievous than terrifying, playing pranks on guests like moving chairs and tugging on sheets. You can find out more about Billy and other NOLA ghosts on one of Ghost City Tours' pet-friendly guided walks.

8. Historic and Haunted New Boston Inn

Sandisfield, MA
Beautiful by day, spooky by night. Photo by Airbnb

Built in 1731, the New Boston Inn has a long and storied history. Preserved on the National Registry of Historic Places, the building and grounds were used as a training facility during the Revolutionary War, but it’s the untimely murder of a young woman named Harriet that gives the inn a reputation among paranormal investigators. Denied her true love’s hand in marriage by her parents in 1805, she went on to marry a more suitable partner (in their eyes). Her former lover didn’t take kindly to this and shot her in her room after they said “I Do.” It is said that she still wanders the halls and can be heard singing in the music hall from time to time.

Where will you travel for a “fur-raising” encounter? Leave a comment or tweet us @BringFido!