When heading out on vacation, you no doubt want to feel that your dog will enjoy his stay at the boarding kennel while you’re gone. (Here at Barney’s Ranch, we work hard to ensure that our canine guests have a great time.) Naturally, when you return from your trip, you want to pick up a dog that’s as healthy as when you left.
But dogs can – and do – get sick while staying at a boarding kennel. We’ve put together a list of tips you can follow to make sure that doesn’t happen to your dog.
Check the kennel out before boarding your dog to make sure it’s clean, etc.
Visit the kennel yourself and check to see if it looks neat and smells clean. Many kennels don’t allow visitors to go where the animals are housed, and for very good reasons: some dogs can react erratically to strangers and they could injure themselves or come up with intestinal issues. In addition, people can transport infectious agents themselves. Still, any kennel that has a “no visitors” policy should offer you some way (such as via a viewing window) that you can see where your pet will be staying.
You should look for a kennel that has a rigorous schedule for disinfecting areas where the animals play, sleep and eat. The facility should be free of odors, flies, fleas, ticks, fecal build up, and dirt.
The sleeping and activity areas should be safe for your pet.
What we mean by “safe,” is that the dog runs, open exercise areas, kennels/cages/sleeping areas, etc., shouldn’t have objects lying around that a pet could swallow, sharp objects lying around, or harmful chemicals.
Also, the sleeping areas of the kennel should have solid partitions or other dividers that allow your dog to sleep restfully and not feel confronted by other animals in the kennel.
Dog runs should have good traction so that dogs won’t slip even if the surface is wet.
Ask about how the humans supervise the animals.
How often do kennel personnel check on the pets’ welfare during the day and night? How well are they trained to detect physical as well as emotional distress or illness in a dog? Do they know to check for bloody stools or urine, loss of appetite, etc.?
You should make sure your pet is healthy before boarding.
Most kennels won’t allow an animal to board with it if kennel personnel detect signs of illness or emotional issues in a dog. You know your dog’s health best; if he has “slight” gastrointestinal distress, watery eyes and nose, the kennel may not accept him and/or you may want to keep him safe at home.
Barney’s Ranch can administer special foods and medications for dogs with chronic conditions that otherwise are healthy at the time of their stay with us. Should your dog become ill while you’re away, he can be cared for by the veterinarians at Valley View Pet Health Center in Farmer’s Branch.
For more information on our boarding services, or to arrange a visit, give us a call at 469-450-7040 or send us a message at info@BarneysRanch.com.
Image courtesy of James Barker/FreeDigitalPhotos.net