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Posted on 05-08-2018


Boarding can be a stressful experience for both the pet and the pet parent. It doesn’t have to be. There are a few things you can do to minimize stress and make the boarding experience more enjoyable.

7 things to do before boarding your pet:

  • Check out the facility first: If this is your first time boarding your pet, make sure to tour the facility before dropping your pet off. Some facilities offer different kennel sizes or themed rooms, which are best gauged in person. If you can, do a test run for one night to see how your pet does in a new environment.
  • Ask about optional services to make your pets stay more fun: Many boarding facilities offer additional play time, doggy day care, or walks. Incorporating activities into your pet’s stay can help the time go by faster.
  • Relax: Calming supplements are available to help pets cope with the changes and new noises boarding brings to their routine.
  • Bring small comforts from home: Bringing your pet’s bed, toys, and treats can make the boarding facility feel more like home. Ask if the facility will allow you to bring your cat’s personal litterbox.
  • Keep their diet the same: Changing your pet’s diet can upset your pet’s stomach. Although many boarding facilities will provide food if needed, bringing your pet’s own food with directions regarding how much to feed and what time of day is best.
  • Bring your pet’s medical records: If your pet is on any medication, don’t forget to pack it with dosing instructions.
  • Book early: Book your pet’s stay early and confirm your reservation as your trip gets closer.

It is important to have annual (or bi-annual) routine exams, blood-work and urinalysis to maintain your senior pet’s health. By following your veterinarian’s recommendations, you may catch problems before they progress and keep your senior pet in tip-top shape.


Picking your pet up from boarding is one of the best parts of coming home from your trip. Nothing beats your puppy’s wagging tail or your cat giving you the stink eye.

Just like you, your pet is tired after their vacation. Here’s what to expect when you and your loving pet get home:

  • Your pet will sleep more than usual over the next 1-2 days. If your dog played at doggy daycare for all or part of his stay, he will likely sleep and lounge around a bit longer.
  • Coming home can be stressful – your pet may take a few days to readjust to their surroundings. Getting them back on their feeding and exercise schedule will help with this
    • Cats tend to have more trouble re-adjusting. If your cat has a hard time, let her stay in her travel kennel for a day while she’s getting used to the smells and sounds of your house
    • If you have multiple pets (and they didn’t share a kennel at boarding), make sure they have plenty of space for their alone time.
  • Exercising your pet is great! Make sure to ease back into it – if you took two weeks off, it’s hard to jump back into your 8-mile run or intense workout. The same goes for your dog! Start small and slowly build back up to your usual routine.

Give your pet some personalized attention when you get home! Some play time or sitting and petting will help him calm down.

Sponsored by Vetoquinol USA

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