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What You Need to Know About Boarding Your Pet

You love to travel, go places, and see new things. From visiting the beach to climbing the highest mountain, there is so much to see and do in this world that you want to do as much as you can. However, when you have a cat or a dog, leaving them in the care of someone else can be worrisome and downright scary. So what should you do?

New Market Animal Hospital is the best veterinary hospital in New Market. We offer pet boarding services for your cat or dog. Our boarding technicians love animals, and we focus on offering compassionate and loving care to all of our pets in our facility. Below, we’ll go over some things to look for in a pet boarding service, as well as some tips for dropping your beloved pet off. Contact us today to get started!

Ask for Referrals

As with most services, the best, most reliable way to choose is by asking friends, colleagues, or family if they have any experience with any local boarding kennels in their area. A positive review from a friend or work colleague can give you peace of mind when choosing a pet boarding facility. You’ll also want to read online reviews. This is the next best source of information for deciding if a dog or cat boarding kennel is for you. While some people will never be pleased with the care their pets receive while they are away, if a pet boarding facility has a vast amount of positive, glowing reviews, you’ll want to be sure to add them to your list of possible pet boarding kennels.

Visit the Pet Boarding Kennels

Before entrusting your fur baby to a pet boarding facility, you will want to visit the dog boarding or cat boarding kennel first. This will give you an opportunity to see how clean the kennel is, to visit with the staff and see how friendly and knowledgeable they are, and to get all of your questions answered, such as which vaccinations are required. Here, you can ask to see their state licensing certificates and take a tour of the facility. You’ll want to see if they have 24-hour cameras for your pets, a place for your dog to exercise and a place for your cat to walk around, and how many staff are on-site.

You’ll also want to cue in on how the staff interacts with the animals. When you are taking a tour, do they coo at the dogs, reach out and pet a cat, or otherwise show affection? While the boarding staff won’t ever love your dog or cat as much as you do, having staff that genuinely care about your pet can make all the difference in your pet’s boarding experience. Find out about staff training as well. You want staff at your pet boarding facility to at least be trained in dog and cat body language, behavior cues, signs of stress, and basic first aid for pets.

Emergency Care

Another key point you’ll want to look out for is how the dog or cat boarding facility would handle an emergency should one arise while you are away. You’ll want to ensure that there is at least one dedicated veterinarian on call at all times for the pet boarding facility, and you’ll want to ask what is their procedure when an emergency does arise.

New Market Animal Hospital’s pet boarding facility is encompassed within our animal hospital. Should an emergency arise, our vets are available 24 hours a day and are often within 100 feet of your pet for immediate medical attention.

Ask About Safety

As a pet owner, you want your dog or cat to be comfortable while you are away. However, above all else, you want to ensure your dog or cat is alive when you come back from a fun-filled vacation. New Market Animal Hospital recommends that before you choose a pet boarding facility, you find out all of the details about safety.

One overlooked detail is climate-control. During the hot summer months, heat exhaustion is a serious threat to cats and dogs alike, and you’ll want to ensure that your pet boarding facility has an adequate ventilation system. You’ll also want to ask about a backup generator in case the power should go out or the ventilation system should fail. Large breed dogs can be especially sensitive to heat. New Market Animal Hospital also recommends that you ensure adequate heating as well during the cold winter months.

Another safety consideration is overnight care. You’ll want to find out if the pet boarding facility you are considering has someone on staff overnight. This is the best way to prevent any emergency situations from going too long without adequate care. However, if not, you’ll want to find out if they have 24-hour cameras monitoring your pet at all times.

If Your Pet Has Special Needs

Dogs and cats are individuals just like humans, and some require special care. If your dog or cat has special dietary needs, is on medication, or has other behavior quirks like they doesn’t like other dogs or cats, you’ll need to discuss these with the pet boarding facility before making your final decision. You’ll also want to make it as easy as possible for the pet boarding facility to care for your pet while you are away, such as measuring out your pet’s food in baggies before leaving, organizing their medication in labeled bottles, and packing comfort items, such as your dog’s favorite toy. Most pet boarding facilities accommodate special requests, but you want to make it abundantly clear so there are no mix-ups while you are away.

Make a Veterinary Appointment

If you board your dog or cat infrequently, they will need to be up to date on immunizations and vaccinations. You’ll want to make an appointment with your veterinarian to ensure your pet is protected while at the pet boarding facility. You’ll also want to ensure your pet has a clean bill of health. While this is often recommended before flying, it is equally as important before you leave your dog or cat in someone else’s care. This protects you in case some emergency does arise while you are away and it’s the fault of the pet boarding facility.

Prepare Your Dog

It goes without saying that boarding dogs is much easier than boarding cats due to their very nature. That being said, dogs do miss their owners, and while it’s impossible to say what goes through their minds when you are away, it’s not impossible to say that they may be anxious, stressed, or even mournful not knowing where you are at or when you will return. You’ll want to make sure your dog has their comfort items (favorite toy or blanket) and everything else they will need while you are away. Bringing your dog for a quick visit may be helpful as well before you go.

Prepare Your Cat

The reason cats get very stressed when leaving their environments is that they are very territorial. They constantly rub up against you and items in their homes in order to leave their scent. Taking them to a different environment means it’s not their territory, which can make them very anxious.

New Market Animal Hospital recommends bringing a favorite blanket of theirs along that has their scent on it for comfort. Cats are also more susceptible to dietary changes, so it’s always recommended that you bring their cat food along with you so that they eat while you are away. Cats will take longer to adjust to their new surroundings, so don’t stress when your cat meows the entire time you are dropping them off.

New Market Animal Hospital offers the best pet boarding services in New Market. We love animals, and our boarding staff does everything possible to make sure your dog or cat is happy and healthy while you are away. From regular exercise to adequate attention, we are perpetually checking on your pet throughout the day to ensure they are safe. With our talented team of veterinarians close by, you can rest assured that your cat or dog will be well taken care of while you are away. For pet boarding services, or any other pet services, such as regular exams, emergency care, or diagnostics and surgery, give us a call today!