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We are an avid camping family.  We love to camp and bringing our pets along is very much a part of our camping experience.

I have been looking through my stacks of campground brochures for a campground that would fit the needs of our church group.  I put the brochure and map to Alice Springs Campground in Ionia, MI in the yes pile.  It is a newer campground that looked like it might be a good place for our group to try – that is until I found this bit about pets listed under their camping guidelines.

Breeds banned at Alice Springs according to their 2011 brochure:

Golden Retrievers – one of the most popular breeds in America and well-known as one of the friendliest dogs on the planet.  Average size according the AKC 55-75 pounds.

Labrador Retrievers – another of the most popular breeds. Labradors are intelligent, gentle, friendly dogs.  Average size according the AKC 55-75 pounds.

Collie – Anyone remember Lassie?  Apparently Lassie is too large for family camping at 50-75 pounds.  Poor Lassie – who will be there to rescue Timmy?  Maybe a toy poodle can save the day.

Pug – My sister had a pug.  Pugs are super sweet and hopefully Pug owners will show up in droves.  They weigh in at an about 13 pounds.

Bernese Mountain Dog – These are simply wonderful dogs.  I lived with one for years and I would love to own a Bernese someday.  They are so sweet and gentle.  They weigh in between 80-110 pounds.

English Bulldog – Though they have an intimidating appearance, these are some of the most gentle dogs.  Bulldogs get a bad rap.  These cuties weigh in at 49-55 pounds.

Newfoundland – I love these hairy beasts.  We encountered 2 in a bike shop in Traverse City and I fell in love.  They look like bears – they are just huge.  And sweet and gentle.  They shed like crazy but I love them.  These gentle giants weigh 100-150 pounds.

In fact, on this list of Best Family Dogs the Border Terrier and the Pug are the ONLY dogs that would be allowed into Alice Springs Campground.

According to this list of the Best Family Dogs the Pug is the ONLY dog that would be welcomed at Alice Springs Campground.

My sweet Remy wouldn’t be welcome at Alice Springs – according to their brochure.  He’s 40 pounds and growing.  Our more temperamental Emma would be welcome as she weighs just 25 lbs.

I’m so riled up about this.  It’s blatant dog discrimination and it’s just stupid.

I called Alice Springs on this and the woman who answered the phone denied that there is a size limit.  Then I read her the “Camping Guidelines” on the brochure in my hand and she defended that saying they don’t want Pit Bulls and Rottweilers in their campground.  To which I responded the appropriate wording would be “no aggressive breed dogs” – which is typical at private campgrounds.  She then started saying that is what they meant but it isn’t what the brochure says! I hope they realize they could lose a whole lot of potential business this summer because of this rotten policy and then make changes.  Someone either wasn’t thinking or is really ignorant about dogs breeds.

*** In fairness, their website does have “Please no aggressive breeds” instead of the 25 lb weight limit – but that isn’t what their brochure states.

Miss Emma Fierce – our affectionate nickname for this girl who would take on the world to protect me – napping on my bed while I blog and while Christian works on his Read and Think assignment.