When it comes to looking after our furry family members, sometimes it feels like no one can do the job quite like you. This can make things stressful when you must go out of town and want your pet in the best care possible. While you might feel like having your dog with you during your work trip or vacation is a good idea, you should take the following factors into consideration before you do.
GETTING THE ATTENTION THEY NEED You may be able to physically bring them with you, but a change in their schedule can be difficult for a dog. Especially if you can’t fit them into your schedule as usual. If you are going to be in meetings all day or taking your kids to Disneyland, your dog will be lacking the time and love that they need, cooped up at the hotel in an unfamiliar and stressful environment. Boarding your dog at a proper facility will be like a vacation for them; ensuring they are mentally and physically engaged, and getting all the attention and care they could dream of.
SAFETY AND PEACE OF MIND Leaving your dog with a friend seems like the easiest way to go, but friends may not always be reliable and have the potential of backing out at the last minute. Also, it is likely that they won’t know how to deal with an emergency. The properly trained staff at a boarding facility are equipped to handle all kinds of situations that mean keeping your pet safe and healthy. Picking a Boarding Facility There is a lot to consider when deciding if and where to board your dog and not all boarding facilities operate in the same way. Some house multiple dogs in a facility much like a resort. Others offer in-home boarding where your dog or cat stays in the home of one of the staff. Some companies even offer pet sitting services, in which a staff member will stay in your home while you’re away. Once you decide which arrangement is best for you and your dog, you can begin finding a facility to meet your needs. Do your research: read reviews, ask your friends, family, and community for feedback on facilities in your area. Next, you’re ready to schedule a visit to the facility. Seeing where your dog will be staying gives you a complete picture of the kind of care they’ll be provided. Often a quick visit can answer many of your questions.
Not sure what to ask or look for? Here are six key points to consider when looking for overnight care:
CLEANLINESS A responsible establishment will ensure that bowls, bedding and floors are properly sanitized.
VACCINE REQUIREMENTS A good facility will require the proper vaccinations to protect your dog and others. Rabies Vaccinations are a must, as well as Parvovirus/ Distemper. Having a strong vaccination policy is fundamental for a professional boarding institution.
STAFFING Is there enough staff to accommodate the number of dogs in their care? Does the facility have a relationship with a local vet or emergency clinic? What kind of qualifications does the staff have? Do they have at least one person on-site that is Pet First Aid Certified?
SPACE Is the facility large enough to accommodate the number of animals they have in their care? Does each dog have their own sleeping quarters? Is there an indoor and outdoor area for the dogs?
Can they accommodate your dog’s food allergies and special needs? Are other services available, such as grooming, training and walking? Are there webcams available for you to keep an eye on your dog?
When looking for a place to board your dog, find somewhere that really cares about your pet. While pricing can be a huge factor for most people, which drives some to consider other pet-care alternatives, you cannot put a price on the safety, health and comfort of your best friend. In the end, doing the research and finding the right facility will give you peace of mind and ensure that you and your pet are happy while you’re away!