By Katie Downey
It’s summertime, and you can’t wait to hit the beach, but what about your furry little roommates? Unfortunately, it is difficult for many people with pets to vacation. Many skip it altogether because it can be such a headache and wallet-ache. It isn’t as difficult as you think it is, though. So what should you do if you don’t have a pet sitter staying with your animals? You will have plenty of options after doing just a small amount of networking and research.
Know Your Local Kennels
It is tough deciding where to send your beloved for a week without guidance. The best way to find out if a kennel is up to par is to ask around. If you are in any local pet groups on Facebook or are familiar with local rescues, ask them what their favorite kennel is and why. Another way to research is to look online at their reviews. Google their business plus “complaints” and see what you get. Once you find some potential kennels, give them a call and ask if you can do a walk-through before deciding to board your pet.
What to Look for in a Kennel
When searching for the perfect retreat for your four-legged friends, consider what could go wrong and how you would want the kennel to handle it. Many kennels offer camera viewing anytime you want to check in on your pet. I highly recommend that because it will provide you with peace of mind that you cannot get through an email or phone call to the kennel. Having a daily check-in with the kennel is essential. Letting the staff know exactly what to do in an emergency is very important. Make a list of local contacts in case they cannot reach you, an emergency hours vet’s information, and your usual vet’s information. Leave the address and phone number of where you will be. Leave the numbers of anyone accompanying you and your email address.
Knowing Your Pet is Happy = A Relaxing Vacation for You
What would make you happiest if you were Mittens or Fido and your human went on vacation? Compassion and empathy are essential in this decision-making regarding your fur children. Comfort is critical, low stress is super important, and interaction needs to be frequent, but how do you ensure your pets feel that way? If your pet is sleeping, eating, and going potty, that’s a great sign. You want a reasonably quiet kennel and homey items in the kennel for reassurance. Send their dishes, beds, blankets, and of course, food for their stay. When the day does come, and you are dropping them off, stay calm and happy. Animals can pick up on our anxiety and feed off of it. If you have two animals, ask if they can stay together for comfort.
Rest assured that most high-end kennels are good, safe places for your critters. However, if you feel that the business is sketchy, unclean or something feels off, don’t leave your pets there. As I mentioned earlier, word of mouth is golden. Please speak to the staff at the kennel and see what they think of the place. Once you find that perfect luxury kennel for your friends, you will not have to look again for some time. Some kennels are more like resorts for animals. The more you know about a place, the more relaxed you will be leaving your buddy there. Now, you can book your flight or find the perfect place to stay!