It’s vacation time! Are you considering boarding your pet? Here are a few things to keep in mind as you choose a facility.
After a boarding stay, Sparky may come home hungry, thirsty or tired. This is normal. During a stay, dogs might not take the time to stop and eat or drink as much as they should because they can become distracted by all of the new sights, smells and sounds. At the facility, they will eat and drink what is necessary, but may come home and act quite hungry or thirsty because they are adjusting and settling back into their normal routine. Don’t be surprised, as well, if your dog comes home and sleeps for several hours, or even a full day. Pets at home are used to a life of leisure, casual naps and activity when you get home. Because of the extra stimulation Sparky will get during boarding, it is reasonable for him to be exhausted.Look for a place that offers stimulation for your pet, both mental and physical. This will help to limit potential anxiety during their stay. Mental and physical stimulation allows the pet to stay active outside their boarding room and allows them to be more receptive to the staff, and if group play is offered, to playmates. When given the right amount of stimulation, your pet’s time spent in their room is used for productive rest.
Taking a pet to a boarding facility is no different than sending a child to school. Every child catches a cold or the flu at some point as their body builds immunity. Some kids have better immune systems than others – the same goes for your pet! Even if your chosen facility is very diligent in their efforts to prevent the spread of a virus or bacteria that could make your dog sick by requiring certain vaccines and correct cleaning protocol, it still cannot be completely prevented when dogs share a common area.
As a recap, if you must leave town or are looking for a great place for doggy day care, we suggest that you look for a place that offers a stimulating environment. They may offer extra services like outdoor walks, group play, mind puzzles or even nightly tuck-in services. We also suggest you find a facility that has a vaccine and cleaning protocol to assist in keeping your pet as healthy as can be. Finally, expect Sparky to return home happy yet tired, and maybe a tad thirsty or hungry.
By Michelle Goetz
Owner the Four Paws hotel & Day Resort