Yesterland

Ken-L Land Pet Motel

Hosted by Ken-L Ration

Now, sing along...
 
My dog’s faster than your dog;
My dog’s bigger than yours;
My dog’s better
’cause he gets Ken-L Ration;
My dog’s better than yours.
Ken-L-Land at Disneyland

Photo by Roger J. Runck, 1964, courtesy of Robin Runck

Ken-L Land Pet Motel

Sorry. You can’t take your pet into Yesterland. So let your pet stay at the Ken-L Land Pet Motel.


Look for the wide building with Dutch doors at both ends. The doors are yellow—just like Fido, the beloved mascot of Ken-L Ration. There are plenty of windows to provide natural light.

Ken-L-Land at Disneyland

Photo by Werner Weiss, 1967

A convenient place for humans to meet too

While you enjoy lunch inside the park at a restaurant such as the Casa de Fritos, your pet will feast on Ken-L Ration. Or choose from Ken-L Meal, Ken-L Biskit, Ken-L Treats, or Puss-N-Boots Cat Food. A trained, uniformed attendant will feed you pet according to your instructions.

“Ken-L Ration Dog Food, for All Breeds.”


The Ken-L Land Pet Motel opened at Disneyland on January 18, 1958 (according to the Disney Parks Blog). The kennel’s name was sometimes spelled Ken-L Land (consistent with the usual hyphenation of the sponsor’s name) and sometimes Ken-L-Land (with an extra hyphen). Disneyland nomenclature was less exact in those days.

Over the years, five different pet food brands sponsored the pet kennel. The kennel is still operational today, although without a sponsor.

Sometimes Ken-L Land showed up in Disneyland advertising:

“Man’s best friend” has not been forgotten when the family visits Disneyland, thanks to Ken-L-Ration’s deluxe Pet Motel, Ken-L-Land. The courteous, competent staff sees that your pet is provided with and individual “suite” and all the comforts of home. A complimentary feeding of Ken-L-Ration is served your pet, if you so desire.

— Disneyland display ad, Los Angeles Times, June 14, 1959

In 1965, the price for a full day at Ken-L Land was just 25 cents, including a can of food:

Ken-L-Land, an air-conditioned dog motel, is 100 feet outside Disneyland’s main gate. Your dog will love his individual “suite.” Entrust your pet to out experienced handler whose specialty is tender, loving care. The 25c all-day fee includes a free can on Ken-L-Ration... at Ken-L-Land.

— Disneyland display ad, Los Angeles Times, June 14, 1965

The Ken-L Land Pet Motel name lasted until 1968. Then Kal Kan took over sponsorship. The name changed to the “Kennel Club.”

By 1975, the price had doubled to a still very reasonable 50 cents. According to the Disneyland Guide, Summer 1975:

PET CARE
You may leave your pet in an airy, individual enclosure at a cost of only 50¢ for the entire day. This charge includes a choice of Kal Kan pet food. This facility, sponsored by Kal Kan, is located to the right of the Main Gate Ticket Booths. Sorry, pets cannot be left overnight.

Kal Kan’s sponsorship ran until 1977. From 1986 until 1991, Gaines sponsored the “Pet Care Kennel.”

Ken-L-Land at Disneyland

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2002

The Kennel Club in 2002

On January 1, 1993, Nestlé USA Inc. and The Walt Disney Company began a multidivisional strategic alliance, which included “participation” (sponsorship) at Disneyland Park and the Walt Disney World Resort. Carnation (acquired by Nestlé in 1985) and Stouffer’s (acquired by Nestlé in 1973) already had relationships with Disneyland. These brands were joined by other Nestlé brands, including Hills Bros, Contadina, Toll House, Nestea—and Friskies.

The kennel at Disneyland once again had a sponsor. Friskies brought back the name “Kennel Club.” So what if Friskies was a cat food brand and the kennel was primarily for dogs? It was an opportunity to promote a Nestlé brand.

On December 12th, 2001: Nestlé acquired Ralston Purina. With Nestlé owning a real dog food brand, a Purina logo replaced the Friskies logo on the Disneyland Kennel Club.

The 50¢ price of 1975 was a distant memory. According to the Disneyland official web site in Summer 2002, the price was much higher:

Kennel
Indoor Kennel facilities available for a charge of $10.00. Kennel is located to the right of the Main Entrance of Disneyland park. Sorry, there are no facilities for overnight accommodations.

By 2006, the price had risen to $15.

Ken-L-Land at Disneyland

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2007

A guest is about to spend $20.00.

The next price jump was to $20. According to the Disneyland official web site, January 2008:

Do you have pet accommodations?

The Disneyland® Kennel Club is available for day use. The cost is $20.00 per pet, per day and reservations are not necessary. No overnight accommodations are available. Please note the Hotels of the Disneyland® Resort do not permit pets.

The Disneyland® Kennel Club and County of Orange requires rabies, distemper, and hepatitis vaccination certificates from your vet in order to board dogs over four months of age. Cats over four months old need proof of vaccination for rabies, distemper, hepatitis, panleulaopenia, rhinotracheitus and calcivirus.

For further information or questions, please contact Disneyland® Resort Guest Information at (714) 781-7290.

Ken-L-Land at Disneyland

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2007

A clever drawing during the Purina years suggested a rather classy club.

As you might imagine, dogs are the main occupants. Cats are number two. Number three might surprise you... pigs. Yes, pigs.

The Disneyland Kennel Club takes other pets too. If you feel a need to take your hamster, parakeet, or goldfish with you when you spend the day at Disneyland Park or Disney California Adventure, you can leave it at the Kennel Club (although why anyone would want to do so is another question). But if your pet is poisonous—forget it. And forget it if your pet is illegal in California—including ferrets, which are perfectly legal in most of the United States.

Ken-L-Land at Disneyland

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2007

No longer 25 cents

As of May 2013, the price is still $20. Using an online U.S. Consumer Price Index calculator, 25¢ in 1965 is equivalent to $1.85 in 2013. So the 2013 price of $20.00 substantially exceeds inflation over that period.

Disneyland Kennel Club

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2013

Disneyland Kennel Club in 2013

The kennel is still the original building from 1958—although you wouldn’t know it by looking at it.

Disneyland Kennel Club

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2013

Strollers & Wheelchairs (left) and Convenience Vehicles (right)

The kennel is now hidden behind by structures for stroller, ECV, and wheelchair rentals. The new rental facility opened January 12, 2010.

Disneyland Kennel Club

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2013

Former Disneyland Kennel Club marquee

The left Dutch door serves as the spot to drop off and pick up pets. It hasn’t been “Fido yellow” in decades.

The now-blank marquee that once held the Disneyland Kennel Club sign and Purina logo are hidden behind the Convenience Vehicle building.

Disneyland Kennel Club

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2013

Pet food in 2013

The daily fee still includes a serving of pet food. The Disneyland Kennel Club serves Pedigree dry dog food, Mighty Dog canned dog food, Friskies cat food, and dog treats.

Disneyland Kennel Club

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2013

“Suites” for Fido

The occupancy level at the kennel varies widely by season. During the Holiday season, occupancy can be 100%. During the off season, it’s common to have only around five pets all day.

Pluto at Disneyland, 1974

Photo by Werner Weiss, 1974

Pluto, a dog who is always welcome inside Disneyland Park

How about taking a dog into either of the parks? Sorry. Dogs are not permitted. There are two exceptions. Service animals are welcome. And so is Pluto.


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Updated May 3, 2013.