Many folks are stating to book their holidays about now, but don’t forget about your pets, make sure you book your dog’s holiday at the same time (assuming that your dog isn’t going with you).
Good kennels, house sitters and home boarders get booked up very quickly and won’t be able to fit you in at short notice. So make sure you book as soon as you book your holiday.
I need to sort out booking my dogs into kennels as I have several weekends and days away planned/booked for this year and I don’t want my guys to miss out on their holiday break as well (they love their stays in Carr Lane Kennels).
Another think to remember is that your dog will need to be vaccinated and to have had their kennel cough vaccination 2 weeks before they are due to go into kennels otherwise they won’t be accepted, and that will really spoil your holiday! Note: some kennels may accept titre testing instead of vaccination, but this is a very individual thing and they don’t have to accept them. Check first!
If your dog has never been to kennels before, then start by letting them go in for just a day with an overnight stay. Take their own bed, their fave toys and their own food so that they are settled. You can build it up from there. TBH, I was more worried than the dogs were when I left them in kennels for the first time, but it was great of Rosie Townend to send me a video of my guys to show that they were happy enjoying a run about and playing ball. Rosie, Kevin and their staff are fabulous and I couldn’t run my workshops without them. Knowing that my dogs are safe and are having a fab time, certainly means that I can relax.
My task last year was to get Mint and Lara used to going into kennels. They have both has two stays in kennels and coped just fine, although Mint was a bit subdued (she is a bit of an anxious body and a real mommy’s girl), but she did improve on her second stay. Hopefully this year, she will settle better as she will have to go into kennels more often.
When booking a kennels, don’t just book the first one you find on FaceBook or the Internet, make the effort to go and have a look around. Do the dogs there look happy, are the kennel staff knowledgeable, ask to see their license. Ask about exercise and feeding regimes. Take as much care booking your dog’s holiday as you do your own…don’t just go for the cheapest option.Ask your dog owning friends for their recommendations.
Part of the new regulations that came in last year, means that kennels have to provide enrichment for your dogs. To help them on with this task, take some of your dog’s toys with you and let the staff know what games/activities that your dog likes to do. Take a Kong or other food enrichment toy, so that the staff can fill it and keep your dog entertained.
If you are using a home boarding facility, ensure that dogs are not going to be kept in the same room as other dogs and that they aren’t going to be crated all day long. Look at the arrangements they have to ensure that dogs can safely get from one area to another without the risk of fights. Ensure that their fences are secure so that dogs can’t escape.
And importantly, make sure your kennels/home boarder is fully licensed.
Make sure your microchip details are up to date!
If you are going abroad with your dog, talk to your vet now as it is likely that some arrangements/procedures will be different after BREXIT. If you are staying in the UK and holidaying with your dog, then add another tag to your dog’s collar when you are away, giving the contact details of where you are staying as well as ensuring that your details are also on the tag. If your tag is always falling off, then contact Flexitags as they make tags that can slip on the collar and lay flat…makes them much hard to lose.