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Luxury Comes Standard at Morris Animal Inn

Local business has gone to the dogs—and cats—in the best way possible.

The Morris Animal Inn campus.
The Morris Animal Inn campus.
The spacious, idyllic grounds are meticulously maintained. The well-appointed lobby sparkles when you enter. A short walk past the bellhop’s luggage trolley across the stone floor and you are met by a sea of smiling faces at the desk, the first of many guests come across during their stay.

Everyone on staff is devoted to their clients. They know their names, likes, dislikes and are ready to deal with every want and need. Gourmet meals, group and individual play time and a high level of personalized attention is what sets them apart from their competitors.

Often times guests are so comfortable that when they are traveling to the indoor pool, exercise facility or grooming areas they don’t even have to wear a leash.

Before you get the wrong idea, it should be pointed out that the establishment in question is the Morris Animal Inn, a family owned business that has been setting themselves head and shoulders above the rest for over 50 years.

According to Deb Montgomery, the marketing manager at the Morris Animal Inn, the business has been passed down through four generations of truly dedicated, well-educated pet lovers and owners. The Morris family shares tremendous pride in the Inn's notable award winning legacy. From winning Best in Show at the Westminster Kennel Club to providing services that not only meet but exceed all our customers' anticipated needs and expectations, Montgomery said.

Indoor and Outdoor Facility

The Inn is surrounded by outdoor trails and multiple play areas for pets to enjoy and inside there are play rooms, grooming stations, indoor pool facilities and exercise equipment like treadmills all on hand.

Many guests have routines like a run on the treadmill followed by a “tuck in service” where a staff member will read to the pet while they rest. The cat condos feature small televisions that show wildlife videos to keep them occupied and there is a group play area with climbing towers and a giant “hamster wheel” that is cat sized.

Gourmet snacks, all made in the kitchen on premises, include mahi mahi and tuna mix as well as yogurt parfaits. Other offerings include rice cakes, broccoli, carrot and string beans, as well as the seasonal favorite pumpkin ice cubes.  

“We also send healthy tips home with clients,” Montgomery said. “And we offer fitness classes for our guests that include yoga and ‘paw-lates.’”

Some guests come occasionally when owners are out of town, others are dropped off regularly for daycare or obedience training. Some are there to assist in rehab from injury or surgery*. The pool and spa (which is filled with saline and not chlorine) assists in controlled rehabilitation exercises.

Serious About Care

According to Montgomery, the owners and staff are constantly looking to improve and innovate on what they have. They regularly attend trainings and have implemented advancements like a network of security cameras, Sirius satellite radio broadcasts, as well as neckband identifiers for those staying. 

“We take their lives very seriously,” Montgomery said. “Everyone here is CPR certified and are constantly taking classes.”

The Inn also has a retired police officer who lives above one of the administration buildings.

“He is in here every day,” Montgomery said. “And it makes everyone feel safer.”

The Inn is also in the business of being good neighbors. With two backup generators onsite, they became a go-to spot during Hurricane Sandy.

“We were busy,” Montgomery said. “We took in all kinds of animals we wouldn’t normally. And we took 15 cats in from down the shore that were displaced and had nowhere to go.” 

Voted as one of the top places to work in New Jersey, the Inn looks to me more than a family-run business, they are a family. 

“We try to do things that involve everyone. At the beginning of the fall we had a yearbook where we gave titles like ‘biggest flirt’ and ‘soon to be president,’” Montgomery said. “And we have our Muttster Mash which is a costume party coming up.”

Joanne Morris, Vice President and daughter of owners Walter and Marianne Morris, now shares in the undertaking of providing first class accommodations, flawless execution of guest services and providing the care to all guests that come to stay at Morris Animal Inn.

“I was born into the business. I used to come in and watch my grandfather groom,” Morris said. “I’ve always loved the pet industry.” 

Morris is quick to point out that the extended family of employees are to credit for enacting the shared vision and goals of the facility.

“We have an amazing staff, support team and management team,” Morris said. “Great people.”

*Editor's note: The Morris Animal Inn, while it does have offerings that tailor to the needs of pets young and old, firm and infirm is not a rehabilitation facility.

Just sayin October 14, 2013 at 09:39 AM
Although the place is lovely and the staff also very sweet, no matter how you slice it, in the end this place is still a kennel and many many dogs get very sick after staying there. If you drive by there after 9:30pm there are NO staff cars in the lot and there are at peak times over 300 animals in there. So if your dog is used to going out before you go to bed (11) and first thing in the morning (7) THAT is not going to happen and they are forced to hold it for up to 12 hours. Do you best friend a favor and have someone come to your house a few times a day while you are gone. They will be healthy and happy when you get home.
Russ Crespolini (Editor) October 14, 2013 at 01:41 PM
Hello Just sayin' Thanks for your comments. For the record the staff at the Inn maintains there is a 24 hour presence on the site. That includes staff in the Inn as well as someone who lives on the grounds. There is also a security system where video is monitored by the owners. If you have specific instances where they were housing over 300 animals etc, drop me a line at russ.crespolini@patch.com. Thanks for reading and for commenting.

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