Rescue Dog Becomes Lord of the Manor
From the streets to the lap of luxury, Lord Monti now spends his days mingling with guests and living the good life.
Kyra Kirkwood/ |
Posted: September 3, 2014, 2 p.m. PST
It takes a lot to run a hotel. Sometimes, one key player at The Jefferson in Washington D.C. has to pull out all stops when catering to guests. And sometimes that means using the "full Monti”: rolling over on his back, thrusting all four legs into the air, and adorably asking for a belly rub.
Meet Lord Monticello, or Monti for short. This 6-year-old Beagle mix is the official Executive Canine Officer, or ECO, at The Jefferson luxury hotel in our nation’s capital. His duties include hanging out in the historic lobby, meeting guests, and generally making the hotel a friendlier, more loving place to be.
"Monti is such a sweet pup,” says Philip A. Wood, Monty’s official owner and managing director of the hotel. "He has quickly become a nice midday break for all the employees to play with, and he has actually brought the team closer together since they take turns caring for him.”
But Monti wasn’t born with a silver dog bone in his mouth. Before calling the opulent hotel his home, Monti roamed streets and back roads all along the East Coast, before finding sanctuary in fall 2013 with the Partnership for Animal Welfare, a rescue based in the Washington, D.C. area.
In the meantime, Wood had been searching for a dog to become part of the hotel’s family. He heard about the PAW rescue group and wanted to adopt a dog from them.
"We are a very pet friendly hotel, and many of our staff grew up with dogs, so we thought a hotel dog would make a great addition to the team,” Wood says.
And PAW thought Monti would be just that dog.
"My initial search criteria were sweet-natured, friendly toward both people and other dogs, cute, house-trained, and photogenic,” says Sue Silver, dog coordinator for PAW recue. "Monti was a little shy at first, but he made up for that in all the other categories.”
In late December 2013, Monti became the official ECO at the Jefferson, D.C. Staff and guests are all benefitting from this dose of canine compassion.
"The offices are definitely more lighthearted when Monti is around,” Wood says.
During the week, Monti stays at The Jefferson, roaming the soaring lobby, greeting two- and four-legged guests, or relaxing on the plush sofas. He spends the weekends rotating among various staff members’ homes. This works out great for all involved, since everyone was in agreement first before Monti became part of the crew.
And that’s crucial when adopting a "house dog” at a place of business like The Jefferson.
"You absolutely need to have the entire team on board,” Wood says. "If someone is allergic or frightened of dogs, it won’t work. It’s a team effort.”
Want to take your dog to visit Monti? Check out JeffersonDC.com.
To learn more about PAW go to Paw-Rescue.org.
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