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What should you ask a possible dog sitter?

Whether you’re planning a family vacation or you have a mandatory business meeting, there are certain situations where you’ll need to find an alternative placement for your pup. Changes to your dog’s routine and home environment can be stressful to both you and your pet. That’s why making an informed decision is crucial before you book dog hotels. To lessen the anxiety and stress, consider asking the following 5 questions before booking.

What is the maximum number of dogs boarded at any time?

Any reputable facility will have a maximum occupancy for canines boarded simultaneously, especially if they’re a licensed facility. Different hotels or boarding facilities will have different set-ups for their boarding, ranging from private rooms for each dog to shared accommodations. Make sure to clarify what sort of housing your dog will be given throughout their boarding duration, especially if the facility should reach maximum capacity while you’re away. Ideally, your dog’s space will remain private even during their busy season. Should the facility group dogs together, ask them why and what circumstances dictate that decision. 

Ask to View the Facilities in Person

Many dog hotels and boarding facilities have comprehensive and elaborate photos online but seeing the location in person before booking is essential. Make sure to take note of the individual kennels; monitor the space for cleanliness and size. Are the dogs in the facility relaxed or stressed? 

Also, monitor the space for any outdoor areas accessible to your dog. If there are private outdoor areas, are they cleaned and maintained? Pay attention close attention to the yard space too. Monitor spaces for feces, mud, mold, or moisture. Clean facilities will maintain both indoor and outdoor spaces equally. 

What Costs are Involved with Boarding?

While some locations may offer a flat fee service for all dogs, other programs operate on “a la carte” services. Services offered individually may seem cost-efficient but can quickly add up. Extra playtime, walks, treats, swimming, and grooming services can slowly creep up on your budget. Make sure to finalize how much the boarding services will cost you before booking, preferably in writing.

Is the facility licensed and insured? 

Registration of a dog boarding facility requires owners to operate under strict and specific terms. These terms include industry standards for cleanliness, safety, and emergency procedures. Additionally, every boarding facility is required to hold insurance in the event of an emergency. Insurance protects the facility, you, and your pet in the unlikely event of illness, injury, or damages during its stay. 

Will the Facility Provide References from Past Clients?

Before booking any facility to watch your dog, always ask the owner for a list of previous clients. Getting first-hand experiences from other dog owners is a simple way to determine what the facility is like, particularly if a trusted source didn’t refer you. Ask previous clients about the best and worst parts of the center. How did they find staff behavior? How was the dog after returning home from the location? Finally, ask previous clients about any useful add-ons the facility offers.

It’s also important to look online for any feedback or reviews of the location you’re considering. Check for positive and negative feedback, keeping an eye out for any major red flags like injuries, neglect, or behavioral issues after booking. An individual review indicating problems could indicate a disgruntled customer; several claims of similar topics may indicate a more significant problem with the facility. 

Leaving our dog is never an easy decision, especially if it’s for an extended time. It’s crucial to find a business that treats our pets in a caring, loving way, as close to our home environment as possible. Taking the time to research and review facilities before booking can help alleviate any questions, concerns, or anxiety you have. This step will help ensure a smooth transition on arrival for both you and your furry companion.

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