Boarding your dog for the first time can be a daunting experience, but many owners find that knowing what to expect can help relieve any anxiety and fear and put their mind at rest. When you know what to expect, it can help you to prepare you and your pooch for temporary separation.
Here’s what you need to know about what to expect when boarding your dog.
What your pet will eat will be one of your main worries when it comes to putting them in someone else's care. Dogs who are particularly nervous may lose their appetite for a few days, but this is perfectly normal. Similarly, any sudden dietary changes can cause an upset stomach. However, it massively helps if they can continue with their usual diet. If your chosen boarding facility doesn’t offer your dog’s usual feed, ask if you can supply it. If so, be sure to supply enough to feed them for the duration of their visit, plus a few additional days.
Many dogs have health conditions that require them to take regular medication. If you are going to be separated for a day or more, you may need someone to administer this on your behalf. For this reason, it’s important to make sure that you choose a boarding facility that has staff with experience in providing medications and can do this safely, ensuring that your pet receives the appropriate dose on schedule. When you drop your dog off, remember to bring enough medication to cover the duration of their stay, plus a few extras. You should also provide the boarding facility with the name of your vet in case they need to get in contact with them while you are apart.
Many owners worry about what will happen if their pet becomes sick while staying in boarding. Every facility is different, but most have relationships with a specific veterinary clinic that they will contact in the unlikely event that an animal gets ill. It’s important to ask your chosen boarding facility what the protocols are for sick pets – will you be contacted and how quickly? Can you nominate a vet, or do you have to use theirs? Will you be consulted about the treatment options? How will you pay? Understanding what to expect will help you feel reassured about what will happen if your dog becomes unwell.
Most boarding facilities will allow dogs to have a few comfort toys from home. This helps to ease some of the anxiety that they may be feeling, and often makes the settling-in process much easier and more straightforward. The rules vary between providers, but could include a blanket, bedding, or favorite toy.
All dogs need a reasonable amount of exercise to stay healthy, manage their weight, and prevent them from becoming bored. Some breeds need more exercise than others. Whether you’ve got a bouncy Beagle or a laid-back Basset Hound, your boarding facility should provide the correct level of physical exercise in your absence. Many dogs are also very sociable, so ask what opportunities there will be for your canine pal to play with other dogs being boarded, or what will happen if your dog prefers their own company.
If you would like more information about what to expect from dog boarding, or to schedule a visit to our boarding premises, please call R Veterinary Group in Linn Creek, Missouri at (573) 346-5733 today.