Thinking of going on a vacation, but can’t take your pet with you? Don’t say no to the vacation opportunity just yet! There are actually a lot of options for you to consider.
Merely leaving your dearest pet for a whole day alone can be nerve-wracking. So how can you possibly deal with a longer separation period?
Well my friend, it’s time you opened your eyes. You can still make sure your furry companions (as well as the slimy, scaly and feathery ones ) are happy and healthy, despite being miles away.
Consider Pet Boarding
Pet boarding is basically like checking your pet into a hotel. Dogs are usually kept in boarding kennels, while cats go to Catteries. However, you’ll have to be very cautious about the pet boarding you choose.
Make sure the boarding has a license and certification from the Pet Care Services Association (PCSA) or the International Boarding & Pet Services Association (IBPSA).
It’s wise to check out a number of places, before deciding on one. Booking should be done in advance, so start the hunt early on. Take note of all the services each boarding offers, and ask as many questions as you can.
You should consider things like the number of staff, living conditions, security, exercise and grooming options, etc. Based on all the information and your pet’s behavior and lifestyle, choose one that best suits your needs.
Try In-Home Boarding
In-Home Boarding is more like an AirBnB for your pet. You’ll still be leaving your pet with professionals – but in a more homely fashion where your pet gets individual attention and constant interaction.
Basically, it means someone is offering up services to house your pet while you’re away. You can get good references from vets and websites like DogVacay.com and SleepRover.com.
Some in-home boarding places keep multiple animals in their house. This is a good option for social creatures like dogs. You can also keep caged pets like amphibians, reptiles, rodents, guinea pigs and hamsters in such housing.
Evaluate the in-home boarding the same way as traditional boarding. The house should be clean and safe for your pet and legally registered. Also, make sure the house is secure and takes measures like keeping dog safety gates.
Get a Pet Sitter
Relocating your pet while you’re on vacation might be uncomfortable for them. This stands true for cats, who get stressed out when they’re away from home.
Also, not all pets are great with new people and might have difficulties with adjusting to unfamiliar environments. If you’re concerned about such issues, you might want to get a pet sitter.
You can always hire someone to stay at your house and take care of your pet while you’re away. Or, your pet sitter could just visit at regular intervals every day to feed, walk and play with them.
Whatever you do, make sure you are hiring an experienced professional. Check their credentials properly and introduce them early on to your pet- especially if it’s a dog.
Bringing in somebody new all of a sudden might startle your pooch. Also, keep a backup sitter on call in case of emergencies.
Take Help from Loved Ones
Our beloved pets are like our own children. In fact, I’d say they’re even better because no pet parent would willingly take a vacation without them. Understandably, leaving your best bud behind, especially with strangers, can be very difficult.
No matter how professional the setting might be, it’s always better to leave your pet with family, friends or a personally trusted source. So, if you do have that option, don’t hesitate to ask for help.
Just make sure the person is responsible, liked and has experience dealing with pets. Even if you don’t have someone who can take full care, ask your friends, neighbors, and family to check-in.
Trust me – having someone you know to visit the kennel or your house regularly will ease your mind. You can get proper updates on your pet, and they’ll be happy to see the familiar faces as well.
Things to Remember
Of course, a lot of responsibility lies with the place you’re leaving your pet. But as a pet parent, there are some things you should keep in mind –
- Leave instructions for your pet’s caretaker in detail. Let the caretaker know about your pet’s routine, nutritional requirements, medical conditions, etc.
- Discuss your pet’s personality, habits, quirks, likes, and dislikes – everything! You’ve also got to be transparent. Warn the caretaker of any behavioral problems they might face and how to tackle them.
- Try to keep your pet somewhere similar to their home. Avoid noisy places with children or other animals, if they’re not used to it. Make sure to pack items they love and familiarize them with the new environment.
Being away from your pet is not an easy task. Of course, you’ll miss them but you don’t want them to suffer from a lack of food, care or attention either.
Don’t worry though. If you plan well ahead and choose wisely, you’ll be able to enjoy your vacation, knowing your pet is happy, safe and sound.