Dog boarding has changed lot since the days of kennels that consisted of little more than cages and food dishes. You don’t just leave your dog in a kennel, caged up in a small space with other lonely cooped up dogs anymore when you need to go out of town.. Most dog boarding services offer a gamut of services. It’s like checking your dog into a luxury hotel for the weekend
Some dog boarding facilities give dos their own room, complete with TV and furniture, just like the living room at home. Many of the higher-priced services boarding hire employees just to walk and exercise the doggie guests. Some boarding facilities offer special treat and meals. This type of arrangement can be pretty pricey. Despite all the luxuries, your pet still has to share time and space with dozens or even hundreds of other dogs in a regimented environment.
You should always visit a boarding facility before letting your dog stay there during your vacation. Some of the better boarding facilities belong to the International Boarding Pet Services Association (IBPSA), an organization dedicated to educating pet caretakers and bettering standards for boarding services.
Leaving your dog with a friend or neighbor may be convenient for you, but it’s not the best idea for the dog’s happiness and well-being, unless your friend is a dog owner. Your pet may be confused by your absence, and the presence of other dogs and caring humans will be a lot more comforting than a sterile atmosphere with someone who has never owned a pet and pays scant attention to your dog until your return.
A professional dog-sitting service interviews potential caregivers, ensuring only responsible and friendly people will take care of your pet and your house while you’re away. You’ll have to show the service proof that your dog is healthy and has all proper vaccinations and tests. Some people, however, don’t like the idea of a stranger, no matter how well-behaved and documented, staying in their home while they are away on vacation.
A service offering pet-sitting in the sitter’s home works well if you want your dog to stay in a loving home environment while you’re away, but don’t like the idea of a pet-sitter staying in your home. This simple, inexpensive dog boarding option ensures that your dog stays with a loving family, couple or individual, usually with a dog (or dogs) of their own. Check out a list of possible pet-sitters online, preferably one with photos and other information about the household. Some services even offer a questionnaire about your pet’s personality and needs for better matchmaking.
Senior dogs and ones with medical problems are better off boarding at a vet’s office (some veterinary practices have onsite dog boarding). If your dog is a bit frenetic or tends to be a diva, let the boarding staff or pet-sitter know about it ahead of time. Most dog lovers understand that all canines have their own personalities and back-story, just like people, and will know how to take care of a less than laidback dog.
Regardless of the dog-boarding situation, always remember to bring your pet’s favorite toys to the pet-sitter’s home or to the boarding kennel. This will put him at ease and remind him of home. Bring some of your dog’s favorite foods and snacks to the boarding facility, if they allow it. Some kennels won’t allow outside food and will bill you extra for any special treats you request.
So, as you can see, there are several ways to make sure your dog gets all the love and attention he deserves while you’re away on vacation or business. Replicating a dog’s day-to-day habits as closely as possible is the healthiest option. A dog hotel might be swanky and offer doggie manicures, but there’s no substitute for a warm, loving home environment.