by: Gerry Neustatl
There's nothing worse than going away on your hard-earned vacation with the worry that your pet might not be safe, secure, fed properly or exercised adequately in your absence
Holiday boarding can be an excellent solution for looking after your pet while you are away. There are lots to choose from offering a range of different options, from standard accommodation to luxury suites. Prices vary dramatically, and are not necessarily the best indicator of quality.
Ten Steps for Selecting a Holiday Boarding Kennel or Cattery
This simple checklist should help you find the facility that's right for your pet:
1. Visit the boarding kennel or cattery before making a decision. You should be able to visit the facility without an appointment during operating hours. If you are required to visit by appointment only, one must question what the facilities are like when you are not there!
2. Does it smell? This could be an indicator of insufficient hygiene
3. Is there ready access to a vet in case of emergency? Hopefully this will not be required, but it's better to be safe than sorry!
4. Does the facility have a perimeter fence? You don't want your dog escaping in your absence
5. Are staff suitably qualified in pet care?
6. Can the facility cater for your pet's dietary requirements?
7. Is medication readily available, if required?
8. What are the hidden charges? For example, some facilities will charge extra fees for playtime, administration of medication or grooming services
9. Are there suitable facilities for exercise and entertainment of animals?
10. Is the facility accredited by a recognised authority, such as PIAA (in Australia)? This is not required, but such authorities set set minimum standards that member facilities must comply with. This includes enclosure size, meals, hygiene etc.
Many Boarding Kennels and Catteries can also provide a convenient pickup and delivery service. If your chosen facility doesn't, there are specialised Animal Taxis that can arrange this service for you.
With your pet happy and secure in a safe environment you can now set about enjoying your holiday.