As much as you wish you could bring your dog on your European adventure, you ultimately will have to occasionally leave your best buddy at home.
One of the most common things to do while you are away is to board your dog in a kennel. Though this might be a common practice, there are some risks you should be aware of before you decide where your dog goes.
Emotional stress: When boarding your dog for the first time, you are introducing them to a whole new world with unfamiliar people and unfamiliar dogs. If your dog has high anxiety or does not play well with other dogs, boarding could result in a traumatizing experience for them. If that is the case, boarding them might not be the best option. With you gone for several days, the result upon your return could lead to short-term behavioral issues.
Exposure to illness: Your dog will be in a kennel with many other dogs, which means they are more susceptible to germs and fleas than they are in your home. One way you can help your dog avoid illness is making sure they are up to date on all of their shots and ensure where you are boarding them requires all dogs to be vaccinated.
Risk of injury: One benefit of boarding your dog means they get to socialize with others. If they enjoy playing with other dogs, then this kind of environment might be right for them. However, it does mean a higher risk of potential injury as what starts as playfulness can turn into aggression quickly. Make sure the kennel is properly staffed to watch all dogs that are staying there. Take a tour of the facility to try to get a better idea of what the staff to dog ratio is and don’t be afraid to ask questions! The more you know, the more comfortable you’ll feel leaving your furry family member with a group of strangers.
Boarding your dog is not a clear answer for all pet owners. Some pups might need to stay with a family member or friend while you go on vacation, and that’s ok! Every dog is different, and you need to treat them as such.
It’s always safest to consider all of your options before making a decision based on chance. Do your research, ask other pet owners or read reviews, and check out all of the places in your neighborhood that could potentially be a good fit. You’ll save yourself, and your pup, a lot of potential trouble down the road.