Frequently Asked Questions
To help you feel prepared, here are some of the most common issues that may affect your pet after he returns home from boarding.
If you choose to board your dog, you need to understand that boarding is a shared responsibility. A successful boarding experience depends on not only the boarding facility but also upon how well the owner prepares their dog for the experience.
Dogs should be prepared psychologically for boarding. It's best to start boarding them as a puppy as soon as their immunizations are complete. Puppies usually learn quickly to enjoy boarding. We offer Daycare so you can leave your dog for a few hours at a time. This is an excellent way to introduce your dog to boarding. After a few visits, your dog accepts a kennel as a normal way of life.
Anytime your pet stays in a kennel, they will experience some amount of stress. They are in new surroundings, have a change in routine, and are surrounded by strange smells and other dogs and noises (barking). Sensitive dogs can be extremely stressed in a kennel environment. Some dogs who boarded well when they are younger, may not board well as they get older.
Signs of kennel stress can manifest in dogs in many ways. We do our best to keep your dog happy and active during their stay at Downtown Dog Resort.
It is not uncommon for a dog to lose weight while boarding. Most of the weight loss is due to the stimulation being very different at a boarding facility than at home. When your dog is home, they most likely spend their day sleeping while you are at work. At a boarding facility, just the normal activities of cleaning, feeding, caring, bathing and grooming attract high levels of excitement. They are also busy barking and playing with their neighbors. If your dog is stressed from boarding, they will also lose weight. Typically, high-energy/drive dogs, like German Shepherds, Boxers, Hounds, Belgian Malinois, Vizsla, and Weimaraner’s burn more calories than they can consume while being boarded. We will increase your dog’s food intake as needed.
If you have a high-energy dog, you might want to use the adult dog food calculator with an energy level of Active to help you estimate how much to feed your dog each day while they are boarded. You will need to know your dog’s ideal weight (what they should weigh) and the number of calories in your dog’s food. Note: The calculator provides estimates only. Always consult with your veterinarian for your dog’s feeding requirements.
My pet is acting like he hasn’t eaten for a week! What’s going on?
If your pet comes home acting ravenous you will probably be panicking that he didn’t eat the whole time he was in boarding. Of course, this isn’t the case, and if Rumi had been refusing food you would have been told. Chances are he is simply ‘catching up’ on his calories, something which is very common after boarding and occurs because animals often don’t eat as much as they might normally at home. This is primarily just due to the fact that it is a different environment. Within a few days he will have eaten sufficiently, and his appetite should return to normal. If it doesn’t, we recommend that you get in touch with Downtown Dog Resort get in touch with your vet.
My pet has an upset tummy. Did he contract a stomach bug while boarding?
Boarding services are very strict on their hygiene and ensuring that all pets that are admitted to the facility are up to date with their preventative medications. As such, it is very unlikely that your pet has contracted any sort of stomach illness from his stay at boarding. Nevertheless, loose bowel movements are fairly common after pets return home from boarding and this is usually down to a temporary bout of a condition called colitis. This can occur when an animal is over-excited, such as being enthusiastic at the prospect of being reunited with their owner. If it doesn’t settle down in a few days, get in touch with your vet.
Don’t Switch up Your Dog’s Food
It is ill-advised to change an animal’s diet for just a short while. This is because it can take their digestive system some time to adjust and by the time it does, it is normally time to go back to the original food that they were eating.
My pet seems lethargic and is sleeping more than normal. Why is he so tired?
Boarding services are dedicated to ensuring that animals left in their care are kept active and entertained as much as possible. This helps to keep them healthy and mentally stimulated, which can prevent undesirable behaviors such as chewing or scratching from developing. Chances are, if Max seems more tired than usual and seems to be sleeping a lot, it is because the staff at the Downtown Dog Resort have done a good job at keeping him busy. He simply needs to catch up on some well-earned rest and relaxation. If your pet isn’t back to normal within a couple of days and you are concerned, speak to your vet.
My pet is drinking more than usual since he came home. Should I be concerned?
Much like with their eating, pets seem to drink a little less than normal when they are in boarding. This doesn’t mean that Arlo didn’t drink when he was in boarding. All animals in any good boarding facility will have plenty of access to fresh water during the day. Often it is just a case of Arlo feeling more comfortable drinking water at home and choosing to catch up on his fluid consumption once he is back in familiar territory. If he continues to drink excessive amounts and you are concerned, it is important that you speak to your veterinarian in case there is an underlying medical problem, such as diabetes.
Vaccinations Must Be up to Date
Although every kennel will have individual admittance criteria, one thing is certain – any reputable kennel that places a high value on the health of your dog will insist that his vaccinations are up to date and that proof of this is provided before they will allow him entry. This is because there are plenty of serious diseases that can be spread very quickly in places with lots of dogs, making kennels the perfect breeding ground for illness. By ensuring all dogs are up to date with their vaccinations., the risk of your pet and others becoming sick is minimized.
My pet is clingy and won’t leave me alone. He even gets upset if I leave the room. What can I do?
Many animals suffer from a little separation anxiety when they are left in boarding and it isn’t at all unusual to find that your pet is more than a little clingy when you first bring him home. Chances are that your pet is just feeling the effects of separation anxiety and wants to spend as much time with you as possible once he comes home. With a lot of love and reassurance he will soon adjust. It is best to go back to your usual routine as quickly as possible so that you don’t set up any unrealistic expectations for how much time you will be able to spend with him normally day to day.
Different Kennels Have Different Policies and Rules
You may have boarded your dog before. However, if you are using a new boarding facility it is essential to speak to them about their policies and rules surrounding various aspects of your canine’s care. This will include:
What food they can provide or whether you can provide your own
What their policy is on 1-1 walking and playtime or daycare
What items your dog can bring from home
What they will do in case of a medical emergency
Whether they are happy to administer medication
These represent just a few of the different things that you will need to consider when choosing the right kennels for your dog while he is being boarded.
Kennel Cough and Dog Boarding
Kennel cough is a very common infection of the respiratory system. It can be caused by a wide range of bacteria and viruses and is highly contagious and airborne. This means that it is very easily spread amongst dogs, particularly when there are a number of them living in close proximity to one another – such as when they are boarding.
Although a dog’s respiratory system is designed to protect them against infections, the stressful nature of boarding combined with the crowded environment means that canines are less able to fight it effectively. Dogs who are also particularly young, elderly, or suffering from existing illness are also more vulnerable.
Let's Work Together
Please call if you have any questions that might not have been answered.