Finding Reliable Dog Boarding and Sitting Near You for Your Furry Friend
Are you looking for a responsible and caring place to leave your dog when you go out of town or need someone to walk and play with them during the day? With so many options for dog boarding, sitting, walkers and hotels these days, how do savvy dog owners find the best fit for their beloved four-legged family members? Read on for tips on choosing the right dog care for your pup’s needs and personality.
With the rising popularity of dog boarding and pet sitting services, more and more choices are available for pet parents needing a temporary home away from home for their dogs when work, holiday or other life events call them away. But how do you ensure your dog gets the love, attention, exercise and care they need? What questions should you ask potential dog sitters or boarders? What about prices and packages? This article will cover top considerations when researching local kennels, pet sitter networks and dog walkers to find the right match.
What Are the Main Types of Dog Boarding and Sitters?
Whether you want your dog to stay in a comfortable home or need drop-in visits, several main options exist for trusted pet care nearby.
What is Dog Boarding Exactly?
Traditional dog boarding kennels offer convenient overnight and extended stays for dogs with indoor/outdoor runs and cages. Some dog hotels even have premium suites and webcams! While convenient, some dogs may get anxious away from home. Prices range widely based on amenities and location.
Why Consider In-Home Dog Boarding?
For a more home-like experience, in-home dog boarders allow your pup to stay in a private home with a small number of other dogs. Experienced hosts care for pets like their own. They provide walks, playtime, cosy beds and affection.
How Does Drop-In Dog Sitting or Walking Help?
For pet parents gone just part of the day, dog sitters and walkers offer dog walking, play sessions, feeding, medications and more in your home when you’re not there. Sitters may also stay overnight. Apps and sites connect you to local independent pros or companies.
Top Things to Look For in Pet Sitters and Boarding Services
Whether choosing a traditional kennel or in-home sitter, keep these criteria in mind when choosing who you trust with your dog:
- Loving Attention & Exercise: Your dog should get frequent human interaction, walks, playtime, affection etc. Verify this care fits your dog’s unique personality – shy, energetic, anxious etc.
- Safe, Calm Environment: The location should be safely fenced, clean, calm and secure. There should be reasonable supervision and handling policies.
- Experience & Training: Caregivers’ dog handling experience, training policies, pet first aid/CPR training and oversight matter. Look for reviews on care standards.
- Reasonable Prices: Compare rates in your area. Ask what’s included – food, playtime, walks etc. Watch for hidden fees too.
In the end, meet staff in-person and inspect sites. A good match cares deeply about your dog as family too!
Key Questions to Ask Potential Dog Sitters or Boarding Services
Taking time to research and interview potential pet sitters or boarders is a must to find the best fit. Here are some recommended questions:
What Training or Certifications Do You Require for Caregivers?
Reputable services require training for employees – such as pet first aid, dog CPR, behaviour handling etc. Carefully supervised volunteers may handle pets too. Ask about required skill verification too.
What Size Groups Will My Dog Interact With?
Understand the size of play groups and overall groups your dog will mix with. Make sure compatible energy levels, sizes and ages intermingle for safety and comfort if interacting with other dogs.
How Often Do Dogs Go Outside and For How Long?
Especially for high energy breeds, sufficient outdoor walks, play sessions or yard access ensures healthy exercise. Clarify the frequency and length of toilet breaks, play sessions etc.
How Do You Handle Dog Behaviour or Medical Issues?
Ask how they handle anxious dogs, administer medications if needed, alter interactions based on age and health factors etc. The approaches should align with your dog’s needs.
What Are Your Cleanup and Emergency Protocols?
It’s key to clarify how waste, messes, fleas/ticks etc. are handled to maintain high standards. Also understand their protocols if a medical or other crisis occurs. Ask about veterinary relationships too.
What Are Your Prices? What Do They Include?
Pricing can vary greatly based on location, amenities, services and features. Understand exactly what daily rates include – and watch for add-ons like food, medication administration etc. Clarify pickup/drop-off times allowed and related fees too.
Choosing who cares for your beloved dog when you can’t be there is a big decision. Asking the right questions gives peace of mind your pet stays happy and safe in your absence!
Overview of Popular Dog Boarding & Sitters to Consider
To give a sense of leading dog boarding and sitting options out there, here is a high-level glimpse at a few reputable services and key considerations for each:
Local Dog Kennels
Traditional kennels offer secure overnight boarding with various amenities and monitoring. Price and interaction levels vary greatly. Best for more self-sufficient pups who may get anxious away from home.
Pros: More affordable, convenient overnight care, some have premium amenities or veterinary staff
Cons: Less home-like, pups may feel anxious or get little affection
Cost Range: £20-40 per night average
In-Home Dog Boarding
In-home boarding offers specialised boarding in caregivers’ private homes with fewer dogs. Typically includes walks, play, cuddling and relief breaks. Provides home-like setting.
Pros: Home environment, specialised caring based on age, size, energy. Often very loving attention.
Cons: Higher cost, availability varies, cleaning standards may vary
Cost Range: £30-80+ per night average
Dog Walking/Pet Sitting Networks
Online networks like pet sitters offering dog walking, drop-in visits or overnight stays in your home when travelling. Easily searchable, insured.
Pros: Stay in their own home, convenient booking, flexible service durations
Cons: Varies by sitter, most not professionally trained, extra fees add up
Cost Range: £12-28 per 30-min visit average
Professional Pet Sitting Services
Reputable professional companies have trained staff to care for pets in clients’ homes when travelling or away. May offer more skilled care and accountability than apps/networks.
Pros: Insured, bonded, trained pros caring for pets at home, offer extra services
Cons: Higher rates, may require longer service commitments like holiday stays.
Cost Range: £40-80+ per night average
Take time to research these and other local dog boarding options near you to make the best decision for your pup’s needs. Look at ratings, read reviews, ask about protocols. Meet staff in-person too! The right match brings peace of mind while you’re away.