If you’ve planned a holiday or business trip, or any other trip, boarding your dog may have been your first thought. Some dogs cope with being left alone pretty well, and others don’t. If you’re thinking about leaving them at a pet hotel, you need to evaluate the facility very thoroughly in advance. Leave a number for emergencies and information about any medication your dog is taking. Discuss any behavior issues upfront.
Choosing the Right Pet Hotel or Kennel
Do some research to make sure your dog experiences as little stress as possible at the new place. You can ask your vet, a friend, or a relative about what to look out for and if they can recommend any places. If you decide on a kennel, make sure it’s a membrer of the American Boarding Kennels Association. In addition, check that it’s licensed and look for a certificate proving it complies with the highest industry standards. You can also use a site like PetHotels.com to search for the best hotels near you.
Take the time to visit several different boarding facilities before deciding on one. Look at whether the place is clean and well-organized. You can’t expect it to smell like daisies — dogs are dogs after all — but it certainly shouldn’t reek. The individual kennels must be safe, escape-proof, and large enough to house a dog and their food and water adequately. They shouldn’t be housed outdoors the entire time, leaving the animals to the mercy of the elements.
Usually, people bring their own dog beds to kennels and hotels. You shouldn’t rely on the staff providing each and every dog with a comfortable bed. Options like chew-proof and anti-anxiety beds are available to buy.
Questions to Ask Before Choosing
Ask your facility of choice if the dogs are exercised regularly, what they are fed with, how they are fed, and whether you can leave your own food. Also, ask if they offer training, vet care, grooming, and any other services your dog will or might need. They should let you know what they will need for boarding. Typically, this includes items like a bed, toys, and medical information.
If your pet has special exercise needs, do let them know. Many facilities only let the dogs out for several minutes at a time. This works for some breeds, but not others. You need as much information as possible about what kind of exercise the dogs get.
It’s a good idea to get your dog a few chew toys to keep them distracted when they’re alone at the hotel without you.
Paying a bit extra for the staff to give your dog his or her regular food is recommended. In a kennel, all dogs are usually fed the same food. They get stressed by this sudden change. Their health might suffer as a result. Emphasize the significance of any special diet they’re on. If dogs can play together, ask what the facility does to stop dogs from fighting or escaping. Large dog breeds should never play or exercise with small ones. They should always be in separate groups.
Finally, ask about their policy on canines with behavior issues. Are they supervised or separated? Typically, individual exercise is part of this.
How Will They Feel?
Leaving your dog at a pet hotel has pluses and minuses. The hotel staff can monitor your pet closely and pick up on potential health problems. In the event of an emergency, they can act quickly. If you hire a sitter or get a friend or relative to take care of them, your dog may be unsupervised most of the time.
On the other hand, leaving them at home with someone you know to come over will save them the stress of traveling by car or plane. If you’re flying somewhere and you take them with you, they’ll have to fly in the cargo unless they’re very small. It’s noisy and cold, and they’re not going to love it. Traveling by car is the other option. Many dogs suffer from car sickness or simply can’t bear being in a car for a long time. The best option is booking a pet hotel near your home.