Most dog owners will have to leave their pets in someone else’s care at some point. Whether you’re going out of town or have another commitment, having a trusted friend or family member who can take care of your furry friend can give you peace of mind while you’re away. However, not everyone is this lucky, and many dog owners turn to boarding kennels to take care of their dogs in their absence.
Researching local boarding facilities and preparing your dog for their kennel visit can help you ensure your dog is safe, healthy, and happy during their stay. If you’re worried about leaving your dog in a kennel, here’s everything you need to know to put your mind at ease.
How do I choose the best kennel?
Before booking your dog’s stay, do your homework. Word of mouth is one of the best ways to get recommendations for high-quality kennels in your area. If you’re unsure where to start, ask friends, neighbors, and local vets and groomers for recommendations. Additionally, reading reviews online can help you make the right choice for your dog.
If you can’t decide where to take your dog, most kennels allow visitors to tour the facility without an appointment. High-quality kennels are clean, secure, and well-staffed. When touring the kennel, you can also ask questions about their protocol in the case of an emergency, meal schedules, and more.
How can I prepare my dog for their stay?
Whether your dog is staying at a boarding facility for the first time or they’re an experienced boarder, it’s essential to prepare your dog to keep them stress-free.
To help your pup feel more comfortable, pack something that reminds them of home, such as their favorite toy or blanket. Pet care experts recommend sticking to one or two items since the boarding staff usually isn’t responsible for items that are lost or damaged.
If your dog has a special diet, be sure to pack your own food and leave instructions that outline your dog’s dietary needs. If your dog eats at certain times of the day, let the boarding staff know about their feeding routine before dropping your dog off.
Will my dog experience boarding stress?
Every dog owner worries about stress when leaving their dogs at a kennel. Kennel stress is common and can affect dogs of all sizes and temperaments.
Whether your dog will experience kennel stress depends on several factors, including your dog’s personality, the environment, and the details of their stay. Your dog will have to adjust to changes in their diet, routine, new smells, and new people, which could potentially result in anxiety.
With that said, most boarding kennels are run by animal lovers who are familiar with the signs of boarding stress. Your dog will be able to play and exercise, make new friends, and enjoy attention from the boarding staff. After you put the effort into finding a good local kennel and preparing your furry friend, you’ll be able to enjoy the peace of mind of knowing that your dog will enjoy their vacation.
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