Don’t Overlook: Pet Care Options for While You’re on Holiday

Traveling with your pet isn’t always the best option—for you or for your furry friends. Sometimes circumstances don’t allow for pets to travel, or sometimes your pet might not feel up for a road trip across state lines or a long flight. But fear not! We’ve come up a list of common alternatives if you can’t take your pet along with you.

 

Place your pet in a boarding facility

Deciding to place your pet in a boarding facility may be a good choice if your pet does not travel well. Before deciding to leave your pet at a boarding facility, it is highly recommended that you check out the boarding facility you are considering. You should not leave your pet in any facility that you do not deem safe or fit to care for your pet. Some aspects to consider when boarding your pet include:

  • Staff— Does the staff seem friendly and knowledgeable? Is there staff at the facility 24/7? Is the staff qualified? Do they have any special training/certifications? Does the facility have a vet facility or on call vet in the event that something should happen to your pet?
  • Environment— How are the pets boarded? Some facilities board pets together in a small cage, some places board your pets in a small room, and some locations do not place your pet in rooms or cages.
  • Attention— Will your pet be left alone for extended periods of time or will they get lots of free time to roam around to play with the staff and other dogs?
  • Cleanliness— Does the facility match your standards for cleanliness? Keep in mind that unclean facilities may be more likely to spread illnesses and disease than clean facilities.
  • Services offered— Many boarding facilities offer special services such as one-on-one play time, grooming, web cam, or group play time.
  • Rates— Ensure that the cost of service is reasonable for what is being offered.

 

Hire a pet sitter to come to your house

Hiring a pet sitter to come to your house can be advantageous because it does not stress your pet out by relocating them to an unfamiliar environment. However, most pet sitters only come once or twice a day so your pet will not receive attention around the clock like they might at a boarding facility. Before deciding on a pet sitter, you may want to consider the following:

  • References— If the pet sitter has a successful track record they should have plenty of references. If you don’t feel comfortable asking you can look at Yelp reviews for insight. You need someone who is trustworthy to watch over your pet so this is important.
  • Services offered— Many pet sitters offer to get your mail, water your plants, and to administer medications. Make sure that your pet sitter offers whatever you’d like done (i.e. taking your dog for a walk or cleaning your cat’s litter box) before agreeing to their services.
  • Skills— Does the pet sitter have any special certifications or training?
  • Rates—Ensure that the cost of service is reasonable for what is being offered.

 

Have your pet go to a hired pet sitter’s house

Hiring a pet sitter to watch your pet is another alternative you might consider when traveling. In-house pet sitting has one large difference to hiring a pet sitter to stop by your house—your pet will be under constant supervision throughout your time away. Before deciding on a pet sitter, you may want to consider the following:

  • References— If the pet sitter has a successful track record they should have plenty of references. If you don’t feel comfortable asking you can look at Yelp reviews for insight. You need someone who is trustworthy to watch over your pet so this is important.
  • Skills— Does the pet sitter have any special certifications or training?
  • Services—Will your dog be walked? Will your pet be played with? Is the pet sitter able to administer medications?
  • Other Pets— Does the pet sitter have another pet? If your pet does not get along well with others this is very important to know beforehand.
  • Rates— Ensure that the cost of service is reasonable for what is being offered.

 

Have a friend or family member watch your pet

Having a friend or family member is another alternative for pet care when you are out of town. Often times having a friend of family member watch your pet is cheaper than boarding or hiring a pet sitter. A pet can also feel more familiar with friends and family members. Before having a family member or friend watch your pet, consider the following:

  • Responsibility—Is your friend of family member going to remember important things such as when to feed your pet, how much to feed your pet, and how often to pay attention to your pet?
  • Other Pets or Children—Does the person have another pet or a child? If the answer is yes and your pet does not get along well with others you might want to reconsider your options.

Whatever your decision it is crucial that your decision is not only fitting for you, but for your pet also! Your pet should be as comfortable and as stress free as you’d like to be yourself.


Gerald Taylor

I am a lifelong explorer and travel enthusiast. I've never been a certified travel agent, but I have multiple family members who were. I'm not necessarily plugged in to the latest travel vendors and exclusive packages, and I've never cared for the label "life coach," but I do think I have some wisdom to offer about how people can get the most of your their vacation time.

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