What to look for in researching a kennel
Researching A kennel
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What to look for in researching a kennel

Also See: 
Boarding Kennels - Protecting your pet

What to look for in a kennetLike many of you, I find summer has arrived all too quickly and seems to be trying to rush right on by.  We ponder on how we can we fit in a few days of holiday and then along comes, the bigger question, what to do with our beloved four- legged family member. Making the proper choices for our dogs and cats can be a challenge and stressful for the concerned pet owner, however doing the research can make your pet’s stay and your trip away an all-around rewarding experience.

Whether it is for the day or longer, having proper pet care is a must! Many of us today lead very busy lives and having a friend or family member care for our pets is some- times not an option or the thought of leaving your pet unsupervised and alone for hours at a time is not the answer you had hoped for. Then comes the huge decision of finding a boarding kennel, which will care properly for your pet. Hope- fully the following guidelines will help you to make this important decision.

How do I find a kennel? 

Ask a friend, neighbour, veterinarian, animal shelter or dog trainer for a referral. Research on the Internet for ones in your area, make sure when choosing a place for your pet you don’t limit your care to “just around the corner” since some- times a little drive is such a better option. Now you have some names to continue your research on. After selecting a few kennels, confirm they have availability for the specific dates you are looking for and can address your pet’s special needs (if any). If you are satisfied, schedule a visit.

What should I look for?

On your visit, ask to see all the places your pet may be taken. Pay particular attention to the following:

  • Does the facility look and smell clean?
  • Is there sufficient ventilation and light?
  • Is there a comfortable temperature maintained?
  • Our pets live in homes that are heated and air-conditioned, having a facility that is completely climate con- trolled is extremely important to avoid dangerous overheating or cooling.
  • Does the staff seem knowledgeable and caring?
  • Are pets required to be current on their vaccinations, including the vaccine for kennel cough (Bordetel- la)? Such a requirement helps to protect your animal and others.
  • Does each dog have his own indoor run and a schedule for let-outs and exercise?
  • Are cats housed away from dogs? Is there enough space for cats to move around comfortably?
  • Do cats have views?
  • Extra package options like dogs?
  • How often are pet’s fed?
  • Can an owner bring in a pet’s special food?
  • What veterinary services are available?
  • Are other services available such as grooming or bathing?


Social Contact 

Does my pet receive enough social contact? Top of the list and often in short supply due to kennel set up is the pet’s needs for social contact. Make sure the kennel you choose has made pet interaction a priority. Routines that are developed to increase human handling of pets reduce stress levels immensely. Even shy, less socialized pets adapt quickly to a scheduled routine and administered care, when human interaction is incorporated. 

After deciding on a kennel that feels like a “home away from home” for your pet, it may be a good idea to accustom your pet to longer kennel stays by first lodging them for a weekend excursion. This allows a comfort level for both you and your pet. Our pets are part of our family, investing the time in choosing a proper establishment for their care is a wonderful loving gesture they will gladly appreciate. 

Author: Shelley Bennett Smilsky 
Pampered Pet Lodge

Also See: 
Boarding Kennels - Protecting your pet