How to find a boarding kennel near me?
Begin your dog boarding kennel search by checking with other dog-owning friends and neighbors who travel without their dog. Are they happy with the kennel they use? Does your veterinarian board pets for other than medical reasons? Are you satisfied with their facilities and the care they provide for your dog at other times? If so, then you may want to consider leaving your dog with them. If your vet does not board, ask them for a kennel recommendation.
Look up listings in the yellow pages. For convenience, check with those kennels that are located near your home or business first. Set up appointments to visit their facilities and meet the staff who will be caring for your dog. Ask the owner or manager for references.
What to look for in a kennel
When you arrive, get a tour of the kenneling and recreation areas. If a tour is refused, this may be a warning not to board your dog there. On your tour, look for or ask the following:
✓ Is the facility clean, including crates, runs, and yard areas?
✓ Are outside views or runs provided? Is the building safe from fire hazards?
✓ How frequently are the crates and runs cleaned?
✓ How often are the dogs taken out for exercise and potty breaks?
✓ Do the dogs have fresh water?
✓ Does the staff truly like and understand animals, and are they attentive to them?
✓ Are they willing to accommodate your dog's special needs?
✓ Will they administer your dog's daily medication or feed the same diet given at home?
✓ Is your dog permitted to keep toys in his run?
Discuss the kennel's policies. Most require that all animals be current on their vaccinations. What type of proof of vaccination will you need to provide? What does the kennel do in case of a medical emergency involving your dog? Are their rates competitive with other kennels, and do they reflect the quality of the care given? Is payment due before you leave or when you return? Do some services cost extra? Get a schedule of their hours and times when you can drop off and pick up your dog.
Once you select a kennel, give them detailed, written care instructions for your dog. Leave a list of your travel itinerary, along with phone numbers where they can contact you in the event of an emergency. If permitted, send your dog's favorite chew bone and bedding to the kennel. You may want to leave one of your unlaundered shirts with your dog - an item that has your scent and smells like home. This will comfort your dog while you're away from him, and remind him that you will return.
Kennel cough (Canine Bordetellosis or Bordetella)
What is kennel cough? Kennel cough is caused by a bacterium present in the repsiratory tracts of many animals. Kennel cough symptoms resemble a bad cold and include a runny nose and a hacking cough. In otherwise healthy adult dogs, the illness usually runs its course in a few days, but it can be life-threatening to a puppy or senior dog. Kennel cough treatment includes isolating the dog to prevent the pread of infection and resting in a humid environment. Run a vaporizer or humidifier in his sleeping area, and encourage him to nap there. Check with the veterinarian about best treatment methods. The kennel cough should run its course in two weeks.
Bordetella (kennel cough) awareness first arose when dogs began returning home from boarding kennels with terrible coughs. Because transmission occurs through contact with the nasal secretions of infected dogs, kennels were the perfect breeding ground. Boarding facilities now require their canine guests to be vaccinated against Bordetella.
If you are wondering "why is my dog coughing?" - the answer may be that he has a kennel cough, especially if the dog never had a vaccine against Bordetella and recently spent time playing with other affected dogs. Check with your veterinarian to confirm that Bordetella is indeed the cause and get best the treatment for your pet.