When you need to board your pet, it's important to find a clean, friendly, and secure facility. Our veterinarians at Lincoln are here to share tips on what to consider when choosing a boarding option for your furry friend.
When looking for boarding kennels for your pet, it's critical to consider the needs of both you and your pet. This is because when it comes to leaving your pet at home or a boarding facility, there are more options than ever before.
If you're in search of a boarding kennel for your pet, it's important to know which questions to ask and what to look out for. A good way to begin your search is by seeking recommendations from your veterinarian, groomer, pet-owning acquaintances, or neighbors regarding boarders or pet sitters.
Important Things to Consider
Here is a list of helpful tips for finding a boarding facility that will meet the needs of both you and your pet. These suggestions will guide you on what to look for and what actions to take.
- Contact the kennel or pet sitter well in advance of your trip to schedule a visit for you and your pet.
- Do your homework. Find out if the commercial pet boarding kennel is certified or a member of a professional organization. When interviewing a pet sitter, find out how long they've been doing it and how many repeat customers they've had. Check a couple of references as well.
- Find out what immunizations are required. Many kennels will demand Bordetella vaccinations, as well as rabies, distemper, hepatitis, parvovirus, and parainfluenza. Are pets checked for fleas and ticks as well?
- Keep an eye out for places that are clean, safe, and sanitary. There should be enough exercise and sleeping places that are securely fenced and have pleasant non-slip surfaces. Is it acceptable for you to visit all parts of the kennel or residence where the pet will have access? Are they safe and devoid of hazardous chemicals?
- Meet the caregivers and pay attention to how they connect with your pet. How many pets will they look after at once? How much exercise do the pets get, and how frequently are they taken out to relieve themselves? What kind of education and training does the provider have in animal care?
- Take stock of provisions made for the comfort of borders. This includes fresh drinking water, temperature control, ventilation, and shelter.
- Find out what happens if your pet has any healthcare needs or emergencies requiring medication and/or veterinary services. Determine if the pet care provider is certified in pet first-aid.
- Evaluate the staffing situation. Is there proper staff on the premises 24 hours a day? Is there an evacuation plan in case of an emergency?
- Observe the handling of the pets. Is any interaction allowed with other pets? How well is this supervised?
- Is there a night shift? Will there be someone at least in earshot of the pets in case something happens? Are there cameras monitoring the pets at night in case something happens?
How to Prepare Your Pet for Boarding
When it comes to boarding your dog or cat, it's important to remember that you also have some responsibilities. Here are some helpful tips to make the boarding process easier for your furry friend.
- Understand the rules and policies of the boarding facility. Before boarding your pet at a new facility, inquire about its policies, procedures, and services. For instance, what kind of food do they feed the pets, what items can you bring from home (toys, blankets, etc.), what their emergency procedures are, and if they can administer your pet's medication? Inquiring about the policies, procedures, and services provided by the facilities can assist you in determining the best home away from home for your pet.
- When you drop off your pet, keep your emotions in check. pets are experts at reading their pet parents' emotions. Your pet can tell if you are stressed, overcompensating, or saying goodbye. This will be reflected in your pet's mood and behavior, making it more difficult for them to relax once you leave. Keep things simple, short, and positive to ease the transition.
- When your pet first arrives home, he or she may exhibit a variety of behaviors. It's critical to understand that your pet may act strangely in the first few days after returning from the kennel. Your pet may be clingy, lethargic, or suffering from diarrhea. They may even consume more food or drink than usual. This, however, is a normal reaction to your pet's excitement at returning home. However, if things do not improve after a few days, contact your veterinarian.
When searching for a place to board your pet, it's important to inquire about the daily and nightly rates and what services are included, such as walks, individual attention, medication administration, and bathing. You should also ask about the checkout time and whether there are late fees charged. Additionally, be sure to ask about the cancellation policy, as some establishments may require a fee for late cancellations.
If your pet has never been boarded before, consider a brief overnight stay before a longer stay. Even a few hours of canine daycare can be a helpful way to gauge your pet's comfort level and allow the caretaker to better understand their needs. It will also give you the opportunity to observe your pet's behavior when you pick them up.
Leaving your beloved pet in someone else's care can be a challenging experience, but finding a boarding facility that you trust and that your pet enjoys can make all the difference in the long run.