Will My Dog Be Okay in Boarding Kennels?

By John Martin - May 3, 2021

Dogs at a boarding kennel

Are you worried about taking care of your dogs while you are away? Pets are our babies. Unfortunately, you cannot always carry your baby with you. You must leave them at least at some point to enjoy your vacation. Leaving them in a kennel is a splendid choice.

You might have various thoughts and confusion about leaving your dog in a kennel. Some dogs adapt to it, and some do not, but is it safe to leave your dogs in the kennel?

Read on to know more about kennels and leaving dogs there.

How Do I Know If a Boarding Kennel is Safe?

There is no guarantee that your dogs will love the kennel 100%. That doesn’t mean you can leave them anywhere, at any random kennel.

There are certain things that you must make sure of before you choose a kennel.

  • Kennel certification
  • Accessibility to the nearest vet
  • Spacious and clean
  • Friendly atmosphere
  • Experienced staff

Kennel Certification

Anyone can set up a dog house and call it a kennel. It would be best if you left your fluffy friends in safe hands. Look for some certified kennels near you before you book one.

The kennel must be licensed and recognized by the government to take care of dogs. It must follow the necessary regulations. The regulations for a kennel might differ from state to state.

Before booking a place, please take a look at their license and check the dates. They might have an expired license or even a fake one.

If they cannot show you the proper documents, they are unfit to take care of your dog.

You can also lookup websites for authorized kennels near you.

Accessibility to the Nearest Vet

The kennel you are choosing must have access to the nearest veterinary hospital.

If your dog is taking any particular medications or needs any emergency care, the kennel must be able to provide it. It would help if you informed the staff at the kennel about your dog’s allergies. It will help them keep an eye on your dog’s food and call the vet if needed.

You can also contact the nearest veterinary clinic and make sure that the doctors know about the kennel. Once you have informed, you can catch your plane in peace.

You cannot leave your pet under uncertain circumstances.

Spacious and Clean

The vital thing to check is the space they provide.

The beds must be spacious. There are specific regulations and space restrictions for kennels. You can look up the internet if your kennel is following those regulations.

Your dog must be able to sleep and move around. Some kennels only have beds with doors. That will never be adequate space for a grown dog.

Your dog must be healthy both physically and emotionally after you leave them. If they are dumped in a small space, they won’t be okay.

Some dogs prefer to play with other dogs, and some don’t. Your kennel must have provisions for both. Only a limited number of kennels have conditions for private spaces. Others have group playgrounds.

In such cases, your dog might feel alone. So if your dog is shy and antisocial, look for a large and spacious kennel.

The playgrounds and toilets must be reachable and safe.

Take a tour around the Canal and ask about the timings before you leave your puppy. This will ease up your anxiety when you are away.

Also Read: Are Runts of the Litter More Aggressive?

Friendly Atmosphere

Dogs are more likely to undergo kennel stress when you leave them. A Calm and peaceful atmosphere can keep your dog out of kennel stress. The surrounding area of the kennel should not be a hazard to pets.

Your dog must be able to go for walks peacefully. It also involves dedicated and patient staff to take care of your dog.

If your dog does not react well to the staff, there is no point in leaving him there. Unfriendly and ignorant staff might ruin the mood. This can push your dog into kennel stress.

If you wish to avoid this, take your dog for a one-night stay test- stay at the kennel. If we adjust there, then you can happily pack your bags.

Experienced Staff

Friendly and smiling staff will not be enough to take care of your pet, especially if he is a senior dog. Senior dogs and small puppies require acute attention. They should be provided proper medications and correct proportions of food.

A friendly staff might overfeed your dog, falling for his puppy eyes. Before you book a stay, talk with the team there to know their qualifications.

Only certified staff can feed and medicate a dog. Temporary teams who work for weeks or months can only take dogs on walks and play with them.

Confirm with the people at the kennel about their staff policies and certifications.

What to Do Before Leaving My Dog at a Kennel?

It is hard to enjoy without your pet on your favorite vacation spot but not impossible. Knowing that he is in safe hands, playing with his friends, you can rest a bit.

Booking the right kennel is not just enough. There are specific precautionary measures that you have to do from your side.

Essential things that you have to note are,

  • Vaccination dates
  • Food and stationery needs

Vaccination Dates

Do you want your vacation to cost your dog’s life? Nobody would like that. Dogs, when they come in contact with other dogs from different places, are prone to diseases.

This is why I kennels make it mandatory for your dog to be vaccinated.

Apart from other dogs, the surroundings and playground might cause infections to your dogs. Inform the staff at the kennel beforehand about your dog’s preferences and health conditions. Some kennels ask you to fill it up manually.

This is an excellent practice to make sure nothing affects your puppy.

So if your dog has any vaccinations pending, do not forget to give them before you drop them at the kennel.

Food and Stationery Needs

Now comes the most favorite thing for your puppy, FOOD! Who doesn’t like food? Obviously, not your puppy.

When you enjoy yourself at a five-star hotel, you don’t want your dog to eat from a standard plate, do you?

So before you board, give his plate, water cup, blanket, and toys to the staff. They will stack them in his room. With all his favorite things around, your puppy is unlikely to go under stress.

Some puppies have allergic reactions to certain foods. It would be best if you informed people on the kennel about this. The best you can do is providing the food for the days you leave. This will reduce the stress for both them and you.

You can also give a brief note about his food habits. The most important of all, warn them not to fall for his puppy eyes and overfeed him.

If your dog is highly antisocial, you can take some of his favorite toys. This will keep him a great company when he misses you.

Also Read: Why Do Dogs Kill Birds?

Is It Wrong to Leave My Dog at a Kennel?

You will miss your dog after boarding, won’t you? It is the same with your dog. He to will miss you.

Suppose you ask if it is a terrible thing for your dog to miss you. The answer is a big no.

Dogs do react differently when their owners leave them. This reaction does not always mean that they will be sad for the rest of the days.

Do all dogs miss their owners? There is still no clear idea that the conclusion offers dogs behavior after their owner leaves them (not permanently).

Some dogs feel very sad after their owners depart, but for some, it is a vacation!!

Some of them make new friends at the kennel, enjoy the playtime, attention and make the best memories.

Some owners report a drastic change in their dog’s behavior after being at the kennel. It might be a boost to their energy.

Kennels are not always a negative option. It turns into a positive one too. The kennel stress is real, and you could not deny it, but on the other side, dogs love being at the kennels.

They play with lots of friends, Roam everywhere and explore a new place (new shoes to tear, of course!).

The most common argument against kennels is they stress out dogs and push them into depression. It might be true in some cases, but dogs do enjoy socializing.

After staying for some time at a kennel, some of the aggressive breeds have turned into playful babies. Research has proven kennels to make dogs more active.

Getting into the reality, if you are at home, your dog is always with you on the couch or your bed. He spends most of his time indoors.

In contrast to this, he can finally experiment with all his new jumps and talents every day in the kennel.

This could never be a negative effect.

Short periods spent at kennels refresh and rejuvenate your dog. Make sure you choose a luxurious kennel so that he can enjoy all the attention and love. Boarding kennels are a kind of experience for dogs. This experience can be even life-changing.

Do not be afraid to take the risk. You cannot decide if he is good with kennels or not before staying. Besides, you are putting him there only out of the situation and not interest. So please don’t be worried about it.

It’s Hard to Say Bye to My Baby. What Do I Do?

It is hard, but you must do it. Do not think about the goodbye. Think about the fun he is going to have for the rest of the days.

This thought will not make you sad.

On the big day, do not overfeed him as it might result in him throwing up after you leave. Stop feeding him 3 hours before you arrive at the kennel.

After you drop him at the kennel, keep the goodbye brief. Do not get emotional, and most importantly, do not cry. If you cry I then your dog might understand this as a forever goodbye and get stressed. You don’t want that do you?

Hand him over to the staff there and play with him for some time. As soon as he gels with them, please give a brief goodbye and leave.

Crying makes this more complicated than it tends to be. It might and reduces energy levels for the rest of the days.

Keep it short and sweet.

Also Read: Why Do Dogs Bite Each Other’s Necks?

Final Thoughts

If you choose the best kennel and keep him with all the facilities, your dog will be perfectly alright.

Kennels are not jails. They are more or less vacation spot for dogs. You don’t have to feel guilty or sad about leaving your dog with them.

Do not hesitate anymore; go for a kennel if needed—cheers to an excellent holiday for you and your dog.