Monday, October 19, 2015
When planning a trip, it may be a consideration to take your pet with you. But often, this is stressful for you and your pet and logistically may be near to impossible. If you decide to leave your pet at home while you are gone, you have several alternatives: a kennel, a family member or friend who can look after your pet, or a pet sitter.
If you choose to board your pet in a kennel, be sure to get references and inspect the facilities first. You can get recommendations from your veterinarian or a local shelter. Find out whether your state requires inspections and whether your selected kennel has passed an inspection and meets mandated standards. Your pet should be able to accept basic commands and should be well socialized around other people and pets to be a good candidate for a kennel. He should also be current on vaccinations. If you are planning a long trip, a short stay at the kennel a week or two ahead of time can help your pet get used to the environment. This will also let you know if your pet has any problems with being away from home.
If you choose to drop your pet off at a family member's or friend's home, you should also take some of these same basic precautions. If the home has small children, spend some time beforehand playing with your pet and the kids. This will give them both a chance to learn how to properly interact with each other. You can bring your pet's bedding, bowls, and toys along as well. You will also need to make sure that any existing pets in the home get along well with your pet.
If you are hiring a pet sitter, get references and interview the candidate beforehand. A pet sitter is a great option for pets that are elderly, need special care, or are timid. If you are going to be gone during the holidays, be sure to make reservations with your pet sitter early, as these are traditionally very busy times of the year. Leave clear instructions regarding the care of your pet, along with emergency contact information, and a way to contact you. You should have the pet sitter come over for an hour or two before your planned trip to get acquainted with your home, the location of pet supplies, and to spend some time getting to know your pet.
Whichever option you choose, you should feel free to leave and enjoy yourself without having to worry about the care of your pet. By planning ahead and giving your pet a chance to get used to the change in daily routine, you should have a smooth process for you and your pet.