While planning vacations and other trips out of town can hold some excitement, it can also present one with the problem of deciding how best to care for their pet in their absence. It may seem like a good idea to allow your pet to remain at home and have someone, a friend or neighbor, come over to look after them, but the truth is that these individuals, while meaning well, may not actually have the time or experience to properly look after your pet in your absence. Professional boarding kennels can ensure that your pet receives everything he needs in your absence, and you receive the peace of mind knowing he is well cared for while you’re away.
The Benefits of Boarding Your Pet
The idea of boarding your pet in a kennel may seem mildly uncomfortable, and that is certainly understandable. After all, your pet may experience some stress due to the unfamiliar environment and the close proximity of so many other pets. However, there are also many wonderful benefits in choosing to board your pet.
Your pet may be part of your family, but he is usually not as willing or able to enjoy travel like you do. A long car or airplane ride can be very stressful, and he may not be welcome to stay at your destination. With a boarding kennel, he will not have long rides, he is very welcome and he is made as comfortable as possible throughout his entire stay. He will receive more attention than if he were to stay home alone in your absence, and he will be watched carefully by professionals who can spot the signs of potential health problems.
Things to Consider in a Boarding Kennel
When considering different boarding kennels for your pet, it’s important to recognize that not all kennels are created equally. Here are five things to consider when choosing a kennel:
- What kennels come highly recommended? Whether it is recommended by friends, neighbors, your veterinarian, animal trainer or animal shelter, you will find that a high quality boarding kennel comes highly recommended by others. Some states require boarding kennel inspections, in which case the kennel should display their license or certificate showing that they meet mandated standards.
- How does the kennel look and smell? A high quality kennel will look and smell clean. It will have proper ventilation and light throughout, and have adequate space both indoors and outdoors for dogs to exercise. This also means that outdoor spaces must be protected from wind, rain, sun or snow as necessary, and the indoor spaces must be maintained at a comfortable temperature.
- Are the staff professional and experienced? Both you and your pet will be much more at ease with professional and experienced kennel staff. They should be able to answer all your questions and handle all your concerns, easily and expertly, and assure you that your pet is safe in your absence.
- Are pets required to be current on their vaccinations to board? It is important to feel secure in the knowledge that your pet is among others that are properly vaccinated, so that your pet will not be exposed to any illnesses that could cause him harm.
- Are the animals housed well, and with dogs away from cats? Stress can be induced in many cats by being too close to dogs, and in many dogs by being too close to cats. It is important that the kennel you are considering keep dogs and cats completely separated from each other, and provide all animals with proper housing. There should be plenty of space to move, a soft resting board and bedding to relax on, and a good distance between litter boxes and food bowls.
Prior to boarding your pet, you should also verify how often pets are fed at the kennel, whether they can be fed with their own food (which you provide), what veterinary services are available if necessary, and what their rates are. Once you have found the right kennel for you and your pet’s needs, you should feel relaxed about their stay away from home.