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Going away on Holiday

01/07/2019 - Latest News

New Puppy/Dog Owners -

If you have a new puppy or rescued a dog, and like to go away on holiday here are some tips to help you prepare. 

The most important thing when going away is to be prepared, as it may take sometimes a while to find a suitable boarder/sitter for your dog. 

Often dog boarders are booked months in advance, or may not have the dates available that you require. 

If you are looking to go away abroad its important to think about where your pup/dog will go;

There are the following options:

  • Dog Boarders: Where your dog goes to stay in the boarders home, some have their own dogs, and other dogs, and others will just have one dog at a time. 
  • Dog Sitters: The dog sitter comes to your home and stays with your own dog in your own home. 
  • Dog Kennels: Dog/Pup stays in a kennel setting when you are away. 
  • Dog/Pup stays with a relative/friend. 

With each dog being different, there isn’t necessarily a one size fits all. Some dogs would prefer to be in a home environment, where as others may struggle to be in a different home. Some dogs would find it traumatic without a human around, where as others would be ok. Some dogs will settle in some environments, and not in others. For some dogs being around other dogs all day may be great fun, and for others too stressful. 

Its always worth remembering that how your dog is in your home, in their safe secure environment, may not be how they are in a new unknown environment. 

I would always recommend a trial for at least twice before with where they are going to stay (If Dog Sitting, I would recommend the dog sitter comes and spends time getting to know your dog). There have been times when people have been called home from holidays as their dogs wouldn’t settle in a boarders home, and the T&C’s have covered them to do this, so please be aware. 

Dog Boarders - 

Find a good dog boarder can be worth its weight in gold, getting your dog familiar with a different environment and person can make your life a lot easier when you go away. Good Dog Boarders often need quite a but of notice. 

Dog Boarders should be licensed, this has recently come into play some some may have applied but haven’t been granted them yet. Meet the person, ask questions about the dogs etc. Make sure you understand what the service includes. For many they will beed to leave your dog alone for short periods of time, as they may have other dogs to walk etc, which is perfectly reasonable, but if your dog has separation issues they may be better off where the person rarely goes out. Insurance is also a must, and why having a boarder is safer than friends or family in terms of any incidents happening. 

I would recommend crate training your dog if you are to use a boarder, so they are comfortable in a crate if needs be. There are many boarders that are happy for dogs to be out loose in their home, you may be liable for any damages your dog causes. 

If your dog sleeps upstairs with you, then again chat to the boarder as some dogs may find it distressing to sleep downstairs, especially in a new environment, and it may be that you would need to start some training to help your dog feel comfortable alone. 

Please don’t assume because they love the person that they will be ok in their home without feeling stressed, going to somewhere and sleeping somewhere are two different things. 

Good boarders will have opportunities for enrichment and to help the dogs settle, but even the very experienced boarders may at times get dogs that struggle. 

If there are other dogs there just ensure your dog is ok with other dogs, and can get away from them if needs be. 

Dog Sitters - 

Dog Sitters come to stay in your home, this is a more expensive option, but for some dogs the best for them. 

Please ensure they have insurance, they do not need a license, I would also look to spend time with the person, ask if they are CRB checked, and if possible go on a recommendation from a friend or someone you know. Again they are hard to come by as often are very busy, and many have their own busy lives. For a reactive dog, this is often a good option with a experienced sitter that understands how to walk, handle and train your dog. 

 

Dog Kennels - 

Go and look around the kennels, for some dogs they are fine in kennels, especially if they have been going there regularly and the kennels take the dogs on walks etc. For some dogs a kennel environment is stressful, some rescues it could be very stressful. If your dog is ok with other dogs but not really bothered then ensure they get their own space. For some dogs you will see behaviour in kennels that isn’t usual due to being stressed. For some dogs they would prefer to be in a kennel than a unknown home. Go and have a look around, and I would recommend a couple of trials before going away. 

Friends/Relatives - 

Often the cheapest option, and for some dogs they would find this the least stressful, However always bear in mind if you are training your dog, are they willing to keep the training plan up? If they don’t have insurance and anything happens when in their company you wouldn’t have insurance. 

All of the above can make your life easier when it comes to going away on holiday knowing your puppy/dog is going to be happy and comfortable and you’re not likely to get a call asking you to come back as your dog isn’t coping.