More than twenty-three million households in the United States adopted a pet during the pandemic.
It is easy to take care of your pets when you’re at home. But you might be wondering how to take care of your dog or cat if you need to travel.
The problem is that it can be challenging to choose a pet boarding facility for your furry friend. You want to make sure your pet is well taken care of, comfortable, and safe while you’re away.
To help make things easier for you, we’ve written a guide that explains how to make sense of your pet boarding options. Keep reading if you want to find out more.
1. Visit the Dog and Cat Boarding Facility
Don’t forget to visit a pet boarding facility before dropping off your pet. During your visit, look for signs of cleanliness and proper ventilation.
The staff should be friendly and knowledgeable about the facility’s policies and procedures. They should also be ready to answer any questions you may have.
You should also take time to observe the behavior of the animals currently staying at the facility. This can give you an idea of the overall environment.
2. Learn About the Emergency Plan
By familiarizing yourself with a pet boarding facility’s emergency plan, you’ll have peace of mind in knowing that your pet will be taken care of, no matter what happens.
A good emergency plan should include measures to address natural disasters, fires, power outages, and health emergencies.
A good emergency plan should also include procedures for evacuation and pet transportation arrangements. The staff should also have access to first aid kits and backup generators.
A poor emergency plan, on the other hand, may not take into account the specific needs of the pets in their care.
3. Find Out About Pet Care Exercise
Exercise is important for the physical and mental well-being of pets. Therefore, you should not hesitate to find out about a facility’s pet care exercise plan.
A good boarding option should provide your pet with plenty of opportunities for physical activity and playtime. Not only will this prevent boredom. It will also reduce stress during their stay.
When inquiring about the pet care exercise plan, ask about the daily routine for your pet and how much time they will spend outside of their kennel or cage.
Make sure to also ask about the facilities available for exercise, such as outdoor play areas or puppy daycare options.
Avoid cat and dog boarding options that keep pets in their kennels or cages for extended periods of time without adequate exercise opportunities.
4. Ask Questions About Staffing
The staff at a pet boarding facility plays a crucial role in ensuring the well-being and comfort of your pet.
When assessing a pet boarding facility’s staffing, look for employees who are knowledgeable, friendly, and passionate about caring for animals.
One of the key factors to consider is the staff-to-pet ratio. This can give you an idea of the level of individual attention your pet will receive. A good ratio is one staff member for every ten to fifteen pets.
It’s also important to look for staff members who are trained in pet care and are knowledgeable about the needs of different types of animals.
Ask about the training and certification of the staff, and find out whether they have experience in handling and caring for pets with special needs.
Additionally, you should ask about the staff’s availability and schedule. Find out whether there are staff members on duty 24/7.
5. Look For Additional Services
Some pet boarding facilities offer dog grooming services, which means that your pets will look and feel great during their stay.
You should also inquire about other services such as feeding and medication administration, exercise and playtime, and one-on-one attention.
Find out whether these services are included in the boarding fee or if they come at an additional cost.
It’s also a good idea to ask about the options for personalizing your pet’s stay, such as bringing their own bedding or toys, or special dietary requirements.
A pet boarding facility that offers these options can help make your pet’s stay as comfortable and familiar as possible.
6. Assess the Cleanliness
Look for signs of overall cleanliness, such as the appearance of the kennels, play areas, and common spaces. These should be free of debris, and the facilities should have a fresh, clean smell.
Next, pay attention to the cleanliness of the bedding and litter areas. These should be free of waste and cleaned regularly to prevent the spread of disease.
It’s also important to observe the hygiene practices of the staff, such as washing their hands before and after handling pets, and wearing gloves when necessary.
7. Know Your Budget
Take time to research the average cost of pet boarding services in your area. You should also figure out what types of services your pets need.
Consider factors such as the type of boarding accommodations you want for your pet, whether you want additional services such as grooming or feeding, and the length of your pet’s stay.
You should also factor in any potential costs for emergencies or unexpected events, such as veterinary care or additional transportation.
Once you have a clear idea of the costs involved, you can set a budget that works for your needs. Keep in mind that the cheapest option may not always be the best choice for your pet.
Find the Right Pet Boarding Facility
It can be difficult to know what to look for when you’re in the process of choosing a pet boarding facility.
Make sure to visit a facility before dropping your pet off. You should also choose a facility that has great staff, offers additional services, and has a clear emergency plan in place.
Are you looking for the right pet care facility in Pennsylvania? If so, the Valley Veterinary Hospital can help you. Don’t hesitate to visit our Cat and Dog Boarding services page to get started today!