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Old 11-12-2012, 10:57 PM
 
Location: Sumter, SC
1,833 posts, read 2,071,964 times
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I have a dog, almost one year old. We have to go away for Thanksgiving and have no choice but to board her for a full week. I have never owned a dog before and have never boarded a pet. I am concerned and a bit worried. The boarding facility has a great reputation so I am not concerned with her physical well being. I'm more concerned about her emotional well being.

Am I being irrational? Or can this be a rough event for a dog? Do dogs forget? Will she remember us when we get her home or will we need to build a new relationship?

Thanks for any information. Hopefully this will be a more tramatic time on us rather than her.
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Old 11-12-2012, 11:21 PM
 
Location: Southeast Idaho
4,659 posts, read 15,775,199 times
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I work for a boarding hotel. Let's face facts, dogs by nature are pack animals and yes you are their human pack, but just like we enjoy boys/girls night, they enjoy the company of other dogs. Do all dogs like it? No. Do most dogs? Yes.

Yes, your dog will remember you. Be it a week, a month or a year, she will remember you

My suggestion, if your boarding facility does daycare, ask about doing a trial day so your dog can get a feel for things. That way she knows she's not going to the vet and she knows you're coming back for her.

If they offer grooming/bathing services, I suggest signing her up for a bath. Dogs are dogs and can always find something to roll in.

Make certain you are aware of all the costs up front. Ours for example does a flat fee for boarding and playtime only adding more charges if there are medications to be dispensed while others charge you for them getting group play, going out more than once and even turn down services
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Old 11-13-2012, 03:24 AM
 
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 16,319,506 times
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I'd also suggest taking a bag of your dog's food...don't need tummy trouble on top of everything else!

Your dog is going to be fine. Probably a little confused at first, but oh - the joy when you come to pick her up...you will see butt wiggles galore. You're right - it will probably be more traumatic for you than her. I am hoping she is well socialized to other dogs; if so, she will find her new best friends and move along very nicely, have a great vacation, and enjoy her time at the spa. Oh, and you'll be fine too... :-)
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Old 11-13-2012, 05:42 AM
 
1,325 posts, read 2,841,079 times
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Be sure to take a bed for her....something that smells like home.
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Old 11-13-2012, 06:28 AM
 
Location: Montreal -> CT -> MA -> Montreal -> Ottawa
16,668 posts, read 26,737,164 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by talloolla View Post
Be sure to take a bed for her....something that smells like home.
... and a t-shirt that you've worn, so she has something that smells like you.

On another note, if boarding continues to be a concern for you (it is for me, so I understand this), when you get back, start looking into services where you either bring your dog to someone's home to "babysit" her, or someone stays in your home with her. You can google "pet sitting" and your town, and you can also ask at the vet if they know someone.

Have a great vacation and don't worry -- she will definitely remember you. I promise you that.
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:00 AM
 
Location: A tropical island
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My husband and I travel several times a year so we have to board our maltese. She loves being around the other dogs! Be aware that some facilities have staff present 24 hours a day, some have staff there only limited hours (i.e. 7 am to 5 pm). If the staff's workday is short, that means your dog will spend long hours in a crate (or other containment) unable to go out for potty or play. I just visited a place that would have required our dog to be crated for 13 hours overnight, and there's no way she can hold her bladder that long! So I kept looking, and found a site that matched me up with a local pet lover who will take our dog in as a member of the family. (not sure if I'm allowed to mention the website. I can email it to you if you'd like).

One last thing, as much as my dog enjoys her "vacation time," she is always a bit "off" when we bring her back home. She is sluggish, sometimes doesn't eat well for a couple days. I don't why it is, but it almost always happens. (we do bring her own food, so that's not it). She is always happy to see us though!
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:44 AM
 
Location: Southeast Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kayanne View Post
One last thing, as much as my dog enjoys her "vacation time," she is always a bit "off" when we bring her back home. She is sluggish, sometimes doesn't eat well for a couple days. I don't why it is, but it almost always happens. (we do bring her own food, so that's not it). She is always happy to see us though!
Sluggish can be explained if she is in a boarding situation and has other dogs to play with. No matter the activity level at home, it escalates in a social situation and they tend to play harder and longer than at home.
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:27 AM
 
Location: Sumter, SC
1,833 posts, read 2,071,964 times
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Thanks for all the responses. I do plan on bringing her own food, her blanket, her HUGE chew bone and a tennis ball she loves to play with. The T-Shirt is also a good idea. She does not socialize well with other dogs. She plays fairly rough. Even though it is "play" it's unsettling for any long period of time. She has a cousin Labradoodle and I tried one day a few weeks ago to let them go at it hoping they would wear each other out and just be able to "hang around" with each other. They rough housed for 3 full hours and both were soaking wet from spit and completely exauhasted. But they never just calmed down. BUT......this boarding house does not allow contact between dogs. Each is housed in a chain link pen about the size of a walk in closet and they all go outside seperately in a fenced in play area with toys, trees and bushes. The staff isn't there 24/7 so she will have to mess in her pen. She gets outside twice a day and the pen is cleaned while she is out. I have arranged to have her bathed and her nails clipped the day I pick her up.
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Old 11-13-2012, 12:23 PM
 
1,325 posts, read 2,841,079 times
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You mentioned that the dogs stay in a chain link enclosure and it reminded me of the first kennel we used for our dog. While it was large and clean, it did not offer any real privacy for her and my gal loves to make a den. I bought a lightweight collapsible kennel that housed her bed and gave her a place to sleep where she could feel protected from the chaos that happens so often within kennels. It was a great purchase...I think I bought it at a Walmart and cost aprox $40 - she weighs in close to 30 pounds and I would consider her medium sized and it a fabric and mesh construction. She did chew the mesh door so that no longer closes but I keep it up in the house and it is a great place to take a nap when the house is a bit too noisy for her!
Have a great vacation and don't dwell on the goodbye part of the experience. Just think about how tickled she will be when you pick her up!
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Old 11-13-2012, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara CA
4,714 posts, read 10,175,719 times
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Your dog will be fine do not spend your time away worring about if she is happy or not. I have used both pet sitters and boarded dogs depending on which dogs I have at the time. My Jazz was very attached to me and was a difficult dog so she was better in a kennel as then I knew she was safe until she was older then she and Dash were fine with the pet sitter. She acted like she hated it and when they would put their leash on her to take her away she would jump up and wrap her front legs around my legs so they would have to pry her off of me. The first time she went to one place she pulled this and they were worried that she would be one of those dogs that would not eat and would mope around...of course the minute I was gone she was fine and they had no issues with her. The Kennel was on a ranch and the man actually liked her so much he took her out with him when he worked in his garden. I know she had a good time there and she seemed to really like the guy . Her " act" when I would take her to a kennel was like a Kid that pitches a fit when mom and dad leave then the minute the car is out of site is happy and having fun with the babysitter.

I do always take my own food and a blanket with my scent on it and depending on the dog a toy. My experience is alot of kennels do not allow tennis balls as they can get in the drains so with my ball crazy dogs I always get them a larger ball to go with them.

One of the dogs I own now is an elegant thin sight hound and use to sleeping on my bed or my couch. I use to leave him home with the old dog and a pet sitter but the old dog died last year so now it is him and the young one,Chaos so they have to board. I was really worried about the rude awakening for him as never in his life has he been in a kennel They boarded at my vets and they did let me bring in a big soft dog bed for him so all was well. He survived fine and has boarded again since then.

As others have said my dogs have always done the happy dance when I pick them up, Chaos just about turns herself inside out with excitement and on the way home we always stop at their favorite off leash wilderness area for a good run. Your dog will not forget you even if you were gone for months. Don't worry and enjoy your trip!
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