Tips On Preparing Your Dog for His First Stay In a Boarding Kennel

Owning a dog is a very rewarding experience, but it can also be stressful for both parties when you have to go away and your dog is put in a kennel for the very first time.  So how do you make sure you're choosing the right boarding kennels for your dog and how can you prepare him for his first 'holiday'?  Here are some helpful pointers to guide you.

Exercise requirements

Your dog will be happier if his usual routine can be maintained whilst he is in the kennel.  If your dog is accustomed to having plenty of exercise and stimulation through games and ball activities, it's important that this can be continued.  This may cost you a little extra, but it will be worth it for your own peace of mind and for your pet's well-being.

Diet and feeding

Dogs can become anxious if they are not fed at the same times each day.  Ask the kennel what their usual feeding times are and try to gradually adjust your dog's home routine so that this mirrors what he will have in the chosen kennel.

It's also important that your dog is fed the same diet as he has at home.  A sudden change in food can cause problems with your dog's digestive health and leave him feeling unwell and stressed. When dropping off your dog, make sure you bring all needed food with you.

Medical matters

If your dog has any regular medication, make sure that you have enough in stock to last him during his stay at the boarding kennel.  It's also helpful for kennel staff if you can provide them with a copy of your pet's medical records.

Check that your dog's vaccinations are fully up-to-date and make sure that you have him wormed and de-fleaed.

Going solo

If your dog is not used to being left alone for long periods, you should try to get him accustomed to periods of solitude prior to his kennel stay.  Begin by leaving him alone for short periods of 20 minutes or so, gradually building the time up to a couple of hours.  Ask if your chosen kennel provides short-stay trial boarding to introduce your pet to the idea of kennels before his longer stay.

Familiar items

Putting your dog into a strange environment can be highly stressful, and packing a few of his toys or his bedding can be comforting.  It's a good idea to label the items though, just in case they become mislaid.

You can take some of the stress out of your dog's first kennel stay by following the tips given above.  For more advice on how to prepare your dog for his first 'holiday', have a chat with the staff at your chosen boarding kennel.