As a pet owner, the stress of leaving your dog behind can diminish the excitement of taking a trip. No matter how much you love your canine companion, there will be times when you cannot take them with you. That may be due to emergencies, travel, or illness.
Bringing a pet with you may only be possible in some cases. Perhaps your hotel has a no-pet policy. Furthermore, traveling with your dog is a costly undertaking. Many people resort to leaving their dogs with friends or neighbors. Unfortunately, your friend or neighbor may not have the ability or desire to take care of your pup. Dog boarding may be the best and safest alternative.
Dog boarding is when you leave your dog at a facility overnight with trained professionals. These facilities house, feed, and care for dogs around the clock, and some may even care for cats. Some offer walks and playtime so pets do not feel cooped up in a kennel.
Boarding is a big deal for pets and their owners alike. It is normal to worry about how your furry friend will cope with this change in environment. Fortunately, you can take specific steps to make the process less stressful.
Ensure your dog is current with their shots and other preventative treatments. After all, you want your pooch to be protected from common animal diseases and illnesses. Most boarding facilities ask pet owners for proof of recent vaccinations before they can admit their animals. You should also ensure your dog is free from parasites (ex. fleas and intestinal parasites), since many boarding facilities examine pets before or on arrival.
Your canine friend will likely spend significant time in a kennel while in a boarding facility. Practicing crate training will help them adjust to the confinement. Consider leaving your pup alone at home for several hours in the days or weeks before your trip. You want your dog to learn to spend time alone and hold their bladder. After all, most facilities require pets to be in their kennels throughout the night.
Most kennels have types of dogs of all kinds of temperaments, ranging from shy, playful, to anxious and more. A socialized dog will get along well with other animals in the facility. It would help to take your pup to the park and let them meet and greet other dogs. That will make your furry friend accustomed to being around other dogs. If your dog is highly reactive or aggressive, it could get turned away from some boarding facilities.
If your pup suffers from separation anxiety, tell the boarding staff to ensure they will be as comfortable as possible. They will ensure your pet receives the extra attention and care necessary to feel comfortable.
Pack some everyday items if you leave your pet somewhere new. Such items can offer a welcome comfort that can make things easier for your dog.
You might miss your canine companion while you are away! Planning ahead will prepare you both for the temporary separation. Consult your veterinarian if you want more support in training your dog for boarding.
For more on pet boarding, contact True Animal Vet in The Woodlands, Texas on our website. We will be opening in 2023 to provide you urgent and primary veterinary care.
Dr. Lindsay Nicholson
Chief Medical Officer
True Animal Vet