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If you’ve never left your dog alone for an extended period of time before, you might be a little anxious. How do you choose a dog kennel? What should you pack? Here is everything you need to do to prepare your pup for a fun and stress-free dog boarding experience.
Find the Right Dog Kennel
Choosing the right dog boarding facility can be as simple as asking your friends or vet for a recommendation. Also be sure to check out Yelp for reviews. When picking a dog kennel, you need to keep in mind your dog’s personality as well. If your dog doesn’t enjoy socializing or is dog-reactive, they might not thrive in a facility that has an open format and does dog daycare during the day. On the other hand, dogs that need a lot of exercise and interaction with their peers will probably thrive in dog daycare!
Get a Clean Bill of Health
It is absolutely crucial that you make sure your dog is healthy before you board them. Your pup must be up to date on all of their vaccines before they spend so much time around other dogs. Diseases, such as kennel cough, spread rapidly through dog boarding facilities if all the dogs aren’t vaccinated. Required vaccines, called “core” vaccines are recommended, although if you are boarding your pet, we also recommend “non-core” vaccines since they protect your pet even more from other illnesses.
In addition to a clean bill of health, your dog must be spayed or neutered. Taking care of puppies is a hefty responsibility. Finding homes for all those tiny pups isn’t easy and you don’t want to add to the already large population of homeless pets.
Tour the Dog Boarding Facility
Before you leave your pup at dog boarding, take a tour of the facility. Ask yourself these questions:
- Is it clean?
- Are there toys for the dogs to play with?
- Is there water for the dogs to drink?
- Are workers closely watching over the dogs?
- Are those employees interacting with the dogs?
If the dog kennel has an open format with dog daycare, your dog will also likely go for a trial day. This is to see if your dog is good with other pups and will behave in a social setting. At most dog kennels, this trial is free. Provided the trial session goes well, you will be allowed to board your dog at the facility.
Pack a Bag
Lastly, you must pack a bag for your dog. This will contain everything they will need for the duration of their time in dog boarding:
- Medical records since most facilities ask for proof of vaccinations.
- Breakfast and dinner for each day measured into baggies.
- Your dog should be wearing a leash, collar and ID tag.
- Any medications that your dog is on in a pill organizer.
- Your dog’s favorite treats.
- Your dog’s favorite blanket to remind them of home.
- Your dog’s favorite toy.