With the holidays here, many people are planning on traveling to visit loved ones. And if you’re like me, you probably want to take your furry friend with you. But, sometimes you can’t, and finding a pet care service you can trust can be a challenge.
“Our pets are like family and the last thing we want to do is stress over their care during the holiday season,” said Paula Fleming, BBB spokesperson. “Take a few moments to do your research and find a kennel you can trust so your time out of town will be easier for you and your pet.”
If you’re looking for a reliable kennel, BBB recommends the following checklist:
Check them out and get recommendations. Always check out the kennel with BBB at bbb.org first to make sure they have a good track record for keeping customers satisfied. Also ask your friends, neighbors, veterinarian or local animal shelters for recommendations.
Make a visit. Personally visit the facilities you are considering before scheduling the boarding. Check for cleanliness and offensive odors, and note the overall safety of the kennel and cages.
Ask lots of questions. If your pet is prone to running away, ask about steps the kennel has taken to make their facilities escape-proof. Ask about how your pet may come in contact with other animals. Some kennels let animals play together while others keep them separate at all times. Ask about the feeding schedule, water accessibility and frequency of – or fees related to – exercise. Ask about the hours for drop off and pick up and make sure you understand their billing policy. Finally, ask what happens in case of a medical emergency or other unexpected situation.
Go with your gut. Note the friendliness of staff members and how they interact with the boarded pets. Ask about their background and experience. If your state requires inspections, look for the certificate on the wall and make sure the kennel is properly licensed. Make sure the facility requires that all entering pets have proof of immunization, and ask about their policies regarding flea and tick control.
And if you can take your pet with you on the holidays, the more the merrier!