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Fairmont Hotels & Resorts is now offering a distinctive service at select hotels with resident hotel dogs known as Canine Ambassadors. Travelers missing their own furry friend or looking for a companion while taking a walk can bring along the resident Fairmont dog for extra security and the comfort of home.

The newest member of Fairmontís Canine Ambassador team is Zeus, a handsome Chocolate Labrador who is overseeing interactive guest appreciation at Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa in California. He will keep an eye on a multitude of lobby activities, co-lead guest hikes and assist in grounds supervision of the classic 226-room property.

Joining the pack in summer of 2009 were four new hires: Smudge, a Golden Labrador Retriever who works at The Fairmont Algonquin in New Brunswick; Jordy, a Black Labrador Retriever at Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu in Quebec; Sonny, a Yellow Labrador Retriever who was brought on at The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise as Director of Pet Relations; and Golden Labrador Gracie, who joined the staff at the Fairmont Tremblant.

The dogs meet and greet guests, go on scheduled walks and runs, and serve as community liaisons. The Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind trained all four dogs and although they didnít end up becoming guide dogs, they are committed to the new goal of making every guest smile.

Zeus, Jordy, Smudge, Sonny and Gracie join their other four-legged colleagues as official members of the hotelsí Guest Services Teams. Catie, a Black Labrador originally trained as a guide dog with the Guide Dog Foundation for the Blind in New York, changed careers to become the famed Canine Ambassador for The Fairmont Copley Plaza Boston. Endearingly called Catie Copley, she's a community liaison participating in story hour at the South End branch of the Boston Public Library and has spent time with guests who are ill. Such a delight with children, Catie has even been the star of two childrenís books, the second of which includes her colleague Santol, the Canine Ambassador at Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac. The new book, Catie Copleyís Great Escape, is a follow up to 2007ís top-seller Catie Copley, and follows the adventures of Catie as she takes her first trip to Canada to visit Santol.

At Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club in Kenya, 2-year-old Labrador Golden Retrievers Volga and Ducia stay in the courtyard during the day so guests can simply pick them up for a walk over 100 acres of the resortís property. In Vancouver you can meet Holly, a Yellow Labrador and Golden Retriever mix at The Fairmont Waterfront and Mavis Ė Hollyís half-sister and also a Lab/Retreiver mix Ė and Beau, a Yellow Labrador, at The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. All three are former BC Guide Dog trainees that were better suited to the social life of a hotel ambassador. The Fairmont Waterfront was the first hotel in the company to introduce a K9 Ambassador - welcoming Morgan, a Black Labrador, in 2002. He is now enjoying his dog days of retirement.

As personalized relationships are at the heart of Fairmont service, guests can stay in touch with their furry friends, by sending some "ani-mail" either by snail mail to the hotel or via email at: smudge.algonquin@fairmont.com, catie.copley@fairmont.com, mavisthedog@fairmont.com, sonny.louise@fairmont.com, hollythedog@fairmont.com, beauthedog@fairmont.com, cmt.gracie@fairmont.com and lcf.santol@fairmont.com. Guests who want to stay in touch with Catie, Santol and Sonny can keep up with them on their own individual Facebook pages as well.

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