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  • Writer's pictureVirginia Dare

Boarding Options For Your Pup

Updated: May 27

dogs playing together

It's hard to leave our pups behind when we go on vacation or a business trip, but it may be necessary sometimes. The cool thing is you have a variety of boarding options to choose from. For example:

  • You may be able to find a qualified and reliable person to stay at your home while you're away so your pup gets to stay where they're the most comfortable.

  • You may find someone who welcomes dogs to stay with them in their home environment.

  • Some kennels offer very nice amenities, including private rooms with comfy beds, scheduled walks, and even playtime with other dogs if your pup would enjoy that.

You know your dog best and should make your decision with their best interests at heart. Just be sure to plan well in advance: thoroughly do your research, check references/reviews, visit locations, and make your bookings early enough to ensure you've got the coverage needed while you're away.

If your dog loves to socialize with other dogs and is friendly with people, a kennel with daytime playgroups may be a great option. Some even offer swimming or spa treatments. It's like a doggie vacation for your best pal!

I personally like to have someone stay overnight at my home (with a midday visit) when I go away. My dogs are friendly, but they live a fairly quiet life so I think being at home is the nicest option for them. Plus, I know they're securely contained in my fenced yard, so I can feel safe about someone letting them outside for potty breaks and play.

In-home pet care is also a kindness for dogs who would be too stressed in a kennel or perhaps even if staying in someone else's home where there may be a bit too much lively activity and/or other boisterous dogs.

If your dog is wary of strangers coming into your home, it may be difficult to find a pet sitter who can safely enter to provide the needed care. If you wish to explore this possibility, be sure to find an experienced pet sitter who has an excellent understanding of dog body language and behavior. And plan to hire them for a few meetings in advance so your dog has a chance to warm up and ultimately get comfortable with them entering the home even when you're not present.

If you're looking into the option of leaving your dog at a pet sitter's home, be sure to do your homework. For instance:

  • Is there a securely fenced yard or is the dog walked on leash?

  • Is proof of vaccinations and negative fecal results required?

  • Are all dogs screened for friendly behavior with other dogs?

  • Can you provide things from home, like a doggie bed, favorite toys, treats and chews, a t-shirt with your scent, etc. to make your dog feel more comfortable in this new environment?

  • Where will the dog sleep at night? (If it's in a crate or pen, will your dog handle that calmly if they're used to sleeping on your bed?)

  • How and when is the dog fed? If your dog is accustomed to grazing throughout the day, it may be hard on them to suddenly switch to scheduled meals. (You can practice this for a week beforehand to ease your dog into the new feeding routine.)

  • What veterinarian services will be accessed in the event of illness or injury?

Having peace of mind while you're away is priceless, so be sure to do your homework so that you can confidently select a boarding option for your beloved pet.

Please let me know if you're in need of in-person or remote training services.

You can reach me at

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