If you’re planning a vacation, spending long days at work, or moving into a new home, you may be looking for dog boarding services. There’s no one-size-fits-all approach, which is why we’ve prepared a comprehensive guide to walk you through the various options that are available. Keep in mind your pet’s unique needs and preferences, since they may vary based on if your dog is young or old, large or small, or relaxed or anxious. When in doubt, we always recommend directly contacting dog boarding companies in your area to ask questions and ensure they have the answers you need.
WHAT ARE THE TYPES OF DOG BOARDING SERVICES?
There are plenty of options when it comes to dog boarding services, so it’s all about choosing the option that’s right for your specific situation. If you’re spending long days at work but don’t require overnight care, we recommend looking into dog daycares or home dog walking services to keep your companion occupied and content. On the other hand, if you’re heading on a vacation, you need to consider the different types of overnight care, from dog sitting to short-term and long-term boarding. Dog sitters will typically visit your home multiple times each day or stay at your house overnight, whereas boarding kennels will keep your pet in their care for all hours of the day and night. Finally, dogs with specialized needs or behavioural issues may require “no touch” care, which is only offered by select kennels.
WHAT SERVICES ARE OFFERED WITH DOG BOARDING?
If you’ve chosen to board your dog overnight with a kennel or similar service, it’s important to consider the additional services that are offered. If applicable, choose a kennel that’s qualified to administer your dog’s medication safely and in accordance with the dosage instructions provided by your veterinarian. Extra fees may be applicable, so be sure to inquire prior to booking your dog’s stay. It’s also important to consider dog walking, exercise, and socialization. Whenever possible, we suggest incorporating these activities for your dog given that they are essential for both physical and mental health. Many dog breeds also require regular grooming and bathing, which is why it’s important to thoroughly research and evaluate dog boarding services in advance to feel confident you’re selecting the best option.
HOW DO YOU CHOOSE A LOCAL DOG BOARDING COMPANY?
When it comes to choosing a local dog boarding service, it’s important to take extra steps to ensure peace of mind for both yourself and your companion. There’s no better way to evaluate a local dog boarding kennel than by asking for a quick tour of their facilities. Reputable companies will be happy to show you that their space is clean, secure, and safe. While you’re visiting, we recommend talking to the staff to get to know them and find out if they’re patient, comfortable, and experienced. We also suggest going the extra mile by seeking out trusted reviews and referrals either online or through your personal network. Finally, you should consider if the type of boarding environment is suitable for your companion. Some dogs are more inclined to fit into home-like environments, while others may require a different type of setup. Ultimately, it’s always best to consult your veterinarian or handler.
HOW DO YOU PREPARE FOR OVERNIGHT DOG BOARDING?
Prior to boarding your dog, there are many steps you can take to allow for the best possible experience. It starts with a visit to your local veterinarian to check that your dog’s health and vaccinations are in good standing, as well to trim their nails if needed. Next, you may need to stop by the pharmacy to refill prescriptions. If you’re planning to be away for an extended period of time, ensure you provide a sufficient amount of any medications that are needed. Following a detailed dog boarding checklist, such as the one we’ve provided below, will help you get organized. Finally, we recommend purchasing a storage box with a secure lid to pack everything your dog needs during your time away.
THE COMPLETE DOG BOARDING CHECKLIST
- Standard contact information: yourself and 2 trusted friends or family members
- Emergency contact information: daytime and after hours veterinarians
- Proof of vaccinations and dates of expiry
- Detailed care instructions
- Medicine types and dosage
- Feeding schedule and quantities
- Grooming and bathing specifications
- Walking, exercise, and socialization requirements
- Food, snacks, and treats
- Medicine, supplements, and vitamins
- Leash, collar, harness, and identification tags
- Food and water dishes
- Brush or comb
- Washable blanket (bonus: familiar home or family scent)
- Durable toys
- List of favourite activities
BONUS: A TIP FROM SUPERIOR CANINE’S EXPERTS
As a bonus tip, we suggest bringing your dog at least one day early for any overnight boarding. While it may seem counterintuitive to spend more time away from your dog, it can actually help the process of adjustment go more smoothly. Arriving early reduces stress for both yourself and your dog, since you won’t need to rush. If you’ve forgotten to pack anything, a quick trip home is feasible given that you don’t need to worry about missing a flight. Lastly, you’ll have time to work with the dog boarding service to ensure your pet is comfortable in their new environment and make any necessary adjustments before it’s too late.
There’s a lot to know when it comes to trusting your companion with a dog boarding service, but with extra preparation beforehand you’ll ensure all parties involved are happy, comfortable, and healthy. Don’t forget to share this article with your friends and family, as well as bookmark this link so you’ll always have our checklist on hand. If there’s anything you think we should add, make sure you let us know in the comments.
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