When you plan a vacation, you can’t always take your pet with you. It’s important to make plans for your cat or dog so they’re well-fed and properly taken care of while you’re away. There are several options for traveling pet parents – hire a professional pet sitter or board them at a doggy daycare or kennel. The choice you select should take into account your pet’s age, type (cat or dog), and behavioral and medical needs.
Kennels can harbor highly contagious illnesses like kennel cough, intestinal parasites, and distemper. When your pet remains in the safety of their own home, exposure to these diseases is minimal.
In the event of an emergency, pet sitters are specially trained to handle any health emergencies that may occur. If you have a pet with special dietary or medical needs, the caretaker can administer medications.
Pets are given special attention and playtime with pet sitters; things that kennels charge extra for.
Pet sitters can also bring in mail, water plants, and turn lights on/off to deter burglars while you're away.
If your dog or cat doesn't react well to strangers, especially displaying signs of aggression, he or she may not be too fond of a pet sitter.
This is the most common method pet parents select; it’s slightly cheaper than a pet sitter, but the quality of care is often less. Some doggy daycares are often more specialized and high-end than kennels – and also more expensive. Kennels will meet your pet’s basic needs – food, exercise, bathroom – for a lower price, but there are also hazards that go along with choosing this option.
Since there’s so many animals in one place, the staff can’t give each pet special attention. Extra playtime or walk sessions must be purchased in addition to boarding fees.
The kennel will perform feedings, bathroom breaks, and walks according to their schedule, not yours. Particularly with puppies, sticking to a schedule is important, so boarding a young animal is not recommended.
The bottom line is this: while pet sitters offer higher quality care, they’re also more expensive; kennels are cheaper but can expose your dog to contagious illnesses and ruin their routines. Choose a pet care service that meets your dog or cat’s needs and your own budget. Pet parents with young animals or those with special medical needs should consider pet sitters in order to keep them on a strict regimen. Adult dogs without these requirements have no problems being boarded and emerge perfectly fine.
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