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The Dog Days Are Over: Going on Holiday When You Have a Dog

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There’s nothing better than a family vacation. Bonding time, fun in the sun and plenty of memories to be made- however one thing that can put a bit of a dampener on things is having to leave your pooch behind. This can be stressful for both you and them, and the last thing you want when you’re enjoying your trip is to be worrying if your dog is ok. Thankfully there are a couple of options you can consider so that it’s a stress- free experience, and you know that Fido is receiving the care and attention he deserves.

Take Them To Kennels

This is the option most dog owners choose when they’re going away. When you take your dog to kennels you know they are going to be fed, walked and in a safe and secure environment until you get home. It can make you feel bad as a dog owner leaving them behind like this especially as some dogs find it stressful or have separation anxiety. However if you’re only going away once or twice during the year it’s not too bad and you can make it up to your dog once you’re back home! Plenty of walks, treats and playtime and they’re forget you were ever gone. The main issues you will find with kennels is the cost and the fact that dogs need to be vaccinated before going in. This is good as you know your dog won’t pick up any infections, but it does mean that you have to make sure their jabs are up to date- and if not get them sorted in good time. Kennels can also book up quickly during the summer months so you might need to plan ahead. If it’s your first time visiting a kennel, be sure to go and check it out first. Ask questions for peace of mind, and see if you can find facilities with added extras. For example, some kennels offer a full webcam monitoring service that you can log into a see your dog on your phone while you’re away. Others will offer extras like dog grooming and training so these are things you could book your dog in for if they’re of interest. It’s advisable to take your pooch’s regular food with you, since it prevents them from getting an upset stomach due to a change of diet. Blankets or clothing items that smell like you are also something you could consider as these can create familiarity and help your dog to settle.

Take Them With You

Another option would be to take your dog with you. This can give you the best of both worlds, you get to enjoy your trip and you won’t miss your dog. They can join in the fun and it can be a fulfilling experience for everyone. If your dog is quiet, well behaved and travels well without getting stressed then this could be a good way to go. Lots of hotels are dog friendly (you just pay extra for the security deposit) or if you’re going to a campsite or on a boat many places will accept well behaved dogs. You can even take your dogs on planes or cruises with you these days, just be sure to check out plenty of information regarding travelling with pets. Your dog should be well socialised and not get easily stressed. Plenty of exercise on the day can prevent them from going stir-crazy in their crate– although it’s still likely to be unpleasant for them travelling in the cargo area. However it is something to consider, particularly if you’re going to be away for a fair amount of time.

Ask a Friend or Family Member

If you’re lucky, you might have a friend or family member who is able to look after your dog for you. Just be sure this is someone you trust, the last thing you want is to get home and hear your pet has escaped or hasn’t been looked after in the way you would expect. Your loved one could look after your dog in their home or in yours- if they’re having them at their home be sure to do a quick safety check first. Is the back garden secure? Are the fences high enough that your dog won’t jump over them, and are there any hazards indoors or out? If the person looking after your dog doesn’t have their own pets, these are things they might not have considered.

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