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Pet Boarding, and What to Ask before Leaving Your Pet


As much as we love our pets, it is unavoidable to leave them at times. While some people do choose to leave their pet in their own home with a sitter, others find it is better to board them, where they will have round the clock care and attention, as well as plenty of room to play and other dogs to play with. Once you have chosen a boarding facility (some veterinarians provide boarding services, or you may have overnight doggy daycares in your area), there are a number of questions you should ask before leaving Fido there by himself.

pet boarding

What kind of kennels or crates are the dogs kept in?
Though you will probably be able to see how the dogs are housed at night, it will be beneficial to ensure that the accommodations are adequate and do not feel overcrowded or like a pound. Especially if you have a large or nervous dog, you will want to ensure they have plenty of room to themselves. Bringing along his own crate, if he uses one, will help him to feel more at home.

How much playtime do the dogs have?
Some boarding facilities allow their dogs freedom to run and play all day, with a large outside space where the dogs can play with one another, as well as the staff and any toys that you might have brought along or are provided by the caretakers. Some dogs react badly to boarding if they are locked up all day, while on the other hand, may not want to leave if they have enough time to get to know their fellow dogs and play as much as they want. Most facilities want to tire the dogs out so they sleep soundly and without anxiety at night.

What shots does my dog need?
Because your dog will likely by playing with other dogs, it may be necessary to get your dog a number of shots before he is allowed to enter the facility. The staff will generally have a list of necessary shots, to ensure the safety of your dog and the other dogs in the facility.

Can I see the holding and playing areas?
Besides asking about these areas, you will want to personally see them. This will either reinforce what the staff has told you about how much playtime the dogs receive, or counteract it. If there is a large play area, with plenty of toys, it is likely that the dogs in the facility get plenty of time to exercise. You will also want to certify that the holding areas will suit your dog, without causing him too much separation anxiety.

Get the vibe.
Besides asking these questions, make sure to evaluate how you feel after walking through and speaking with the staff. Your dog is your best friend, and the last thing you want to do is put him somewhere that will not fit his needs. If something feels off, it is better to look for a different boarding company.

Image by: homesteadpetresort.com

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