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Does Airbnb Allow Cats? 2024 Info Guide & FAQ

Written by: Gregory Iacono

Last Updated on June 7, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

Side view of lazy and old tabby cat stay on a bed at home

Does Airbnb Allow Cats? 2024 Info Guide & FAQ

Although most cat parents don’t travel with their cats, more travelers are taking their cat companions with them when they hit the road. Although not as common as dogs, cats do go with their owners on about 22% of trips taken. This means many pet owners who need to find accommodations that are fine with cats staying there. So, does Airbnb allow cats?

Like hotels and rentals, some Airbnb properties allow cats (and dogs), and others don’t. Since every Airbnb location is different and run by a different host, there are various reasons for this non-definite answer. Some Airbnb hosts are allergic to cats and don’t want them inside their homes because it could cause an allergy attack. Others worry that the cat will leave behind fur and hair that needs to be cleaned or that the cat will accidentally break or damage something, including the furniture. There’s also the potential problem of cats marking their territory, which most cat owners would agree is something that any homeowner would want to avoid in their house.

You probably have more questions about traveling with cats and staying at an Airbnb. For example, does Airbnb show if a location or host is feline friendly, and how do you select an Airbnb that allows cats to visit? To discover those answers, read on. There is also information, tips, and advice about staying at an Airbnb with a cat and what you should do when your favorite furball is tagging along.

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Does Airbnb Highlight a Location If It Is Cat Friendly?

Determining whether an Airbnb location and host will allow you to stay with your cat is quite simple. You need to filter your results using Airbnb’s “House Rules” filter. Using this, you’ll only get results that allow you to stay with pets, though some have more specific rules that only allow dogs, cats, or other pets. Once you’ve asked the website to filter, you’ll need to look closely at each host’s requirements to determine if cats are allowed.

For its part, Airbnb recommends contacting the host of any location where you wish to stay before booking to ensure that cats are allowed. When you do, the host will let you know and provide any other specifics you might need when staying in their location.

woman with cat using computer
Image Credit: ORION PRODUCTION, Shutterstock

Are There Extra Fees for Staying at an Airbnb With Cats?

Although many Airbnb hosts will let you stay at their location with your cat, the vast majority charge an extra fee for permission to do so. Like the rates to stay at an Airbnb, which can vary from state to state and city to city, the rates to stay with a cat also vary. From the research we’ve performed, the average seems to be about $18.00 extra per night, though some hosts charge less and others charge more.

Some Airbnb hosts charge a pet fee per night, while others only charge a one-time fee. Also, some charge an additional cleaning fee if you stay with your cat to cover the extra cleanup cost to vacuum hair and disinfect furniture for their next guest.

This difference in fees is another reason it’s best to contact the Airbnb host before booking your stay, as the cost to stay with your finicky feline might be more than you’re willing to pay.

Is Airbnb Required to Let You Stay With a Cat?

One thing to remember when using Airbnb is that every location and every host is different and uses different rules following the guidelines put forth by the company. For example, Airbnb states that there can be no discrimination based on color, religion, nationality, gender, and other factors.

These factors, however, do not include house pets like cats, dogs, birds, and other animals. In other words, while you might want to stay somewhere with your cat, no rule or regulation will force an Airbnb host to let you. There are, however, some exceptions to the regulations.

suphalak cat in bed
Image Credit: Nattakorn Suphatheera, Shutterstock

Are Service Animals Allowed at an Airbnb?

Airbnb doesn’t force its hosts to allow common everyday pets to stay at their locations. However, under its Nondiscrimination Policy, Airbnb states that anyone with a service animal must be allowed to stay at an Airbnb location1. Furthermore, guests are not required to disclose that they have a service animal when booking their stay.

That said, the Airbnb host can ask whether the service animal is required due to a disability and what work the animal has been trained to perform to help their owner. Also, as a guest, you must let your host know about your service animal before you arrive just out of politeness. There might be a situation in the host’s home that would make staying with your service animal uncomfortable or unsafe.

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Are Airbnb Hosts Required to Let Emotional-Support Cats Stay at Their Location?

Some people have cats that provide emotional support to relieve their loneliness, reduce depression, or help with anxiety. The rules about emotional-support cats and other animals vary from region to region, state to state, and even city to city.

a woman hugging her cat
Image Credit: U__Photo, Shutterstock

Locations Where Stays With an Emotional-Support Cat Are Not Required

Although your cat might be providing you with significant emotional support, Airbnb hosts in most locations are not required to allow you to stay at their site with your kitty. They can also charge extra fees just like they would with a regular house cat. Plus, if they choose, they can refuse accommodations to anyone who wishes to stay with an emotional-support cat.

Locations Where Stays With an Emotional-Support Cat Are Required

Some states require Airbnb to let you stay with your emotional-support animal, including a cat; New York and California are two of the most prominent. If you travel to an area where these requirements are in place, the same regulations that apply to service animals apply to your emotional-support animal.

Even if required, there are still rules you must follow if you travel to an Airbnb with your emotional-support cat. For example, they must be housetrained and under control at all times. Also, you can’t leave them unattended at your Airbnb location, and your cat is not allowed to enter areas that would otherwise be considered unauthorized for you as a guest.

Lastly, if you’re in an area of the Airbnb that is considered a public space, your cat must be leashed, harnessed, or otherwise under your complete control and may not roam around freely.

Bengal cat harness
Image Credit: Teksa, Shutterstock

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How to Quickly Determine If an Airbnb Location Allows Pets

It’s easy to see if a particular Airbnb location allows pets, including cats.

Here is an easy step-by-step list of instructions to help you find out this info fast:

Step 1. Open Airbnb in any browser or on your phone.

Step 2. Enter your preferred dates and other pertinent information about your stay.

Step 3. Click the “Search” button.

Step 4. Click “Stays” (top left of the screen).

Step 5. Click “More Filters.”

Step 6. Scroll down the page until you see “House Rules.”

Step 7. Click the “Pets Allowed” box.

At this point, all the search results will be Airbnb locations that allow pets, including some that allow cats (and others that don’t). Remember, however, that even though the properties may allow pets, some may not allow cats for one reason or another.

Can Airbnb Hosts Make an Exception for Your Cat?

If you’re dead set on taking your cat with you when you travel and you want to stay at a particular Airbnb location that doesn’t allow cats, all is not lost. One of the best things about Airbnb is that it lets you communicate directly with any of its hosts worldwide.

Thanks to this allowance, you can always contact the Airbnb host where you want to stay and ask them directly if they will make an exception for your cat. Some might say no, of course, but others might say yes as long as you convince them that your cat won’t be destructive. Your best bet is to be as friendly as possible, explain why you want your cat to stay with you, and make sure your cat is calm, cool, and collected at the location.

man talking on the phone
Image By: Mimzy, Pixabay

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Final Thoughts

Some Airbnb hosts allow cats and others don’t. It’s relatively easy to determine one from the other using Airbnb’s “House Rules” filter. It’s also recommended that you contact the Airbnb host to ask them directly if cats are allowed and any additional rules or fees they have. In some jurisdictions, they might also be required to let your emotional-support cat stay with you.

We hope the information that we’ve shared today was helpful and that all your questions about staying at an Airbnb with your cat have been answered. Traveling with your cat can be a wonderful experience for both of you and make your trip more memorable. If you’re traveling with your friendly feline sometime soon, we wish you the best of luck!

See also:

Featured Image Credit: Alex Zotov, Shutterstock

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