Thinking about what you'll do with your pet when you go on your next vacation? In this post, our Gainesville vets share pet boarding options for you to consider.
What to Do with Pets While You're on Vacation
Pets sometimes seem to become aware of when their humans are about to travel - especially if you aren't able to bring them along on the trip! You might find that your cat climbs in the suitcase and acts much more affectionate, or that your dog begins to look more forlorn and melancholy as you prepare to leave during those final few days.
One of the most important choices any pet parent must make before they take off for a journey is what to do with their pets. Here, our Gainesville vets list options for where to board your pet while you're out of town.
1. Pet Sitting
One way to give yourself peace of mind and ensure your pet will be comfortable is to leave them in the professional hands of an experienced pet sitter. Many cats and dogs feel at ease in their own homes, so having a qualified pet sitter visit to feed, play with and walk your dog may be a great option for you and your pet.
Decide whether you'd prefer the sitter to simply come to your home on a daily basis (or perhaps multiple times during the day) to make sure your pet gets some social time in, or have them stay at your place while you are on your trip.
2. Pet Boarding Facility
Want. your pet to have a home away from home while you're on vacation? Our team at Browns Bridge Animal Hospital is always happy to ensure your dog is content and well-cared for during their stay at our pet boarding facility if you'd like. Your dog will be able to get their daily exercise and spend their energy in our outdoor run before coming into a warm, clean kennel. You can also be sure your dog will be walked and fed nutritious meals.
Cats spend their days in a separate boarding area and get daily one-on-one interaction depending on their preferences. Their litter boxes will also be checked and cleaned throughout the day. Linens are refreshed and rooms are cleaned daily.
If your pet is due for their next physical checkup, you can book a routine exam with one of our veterinarians during their stay with us.
Plus, we offer medical boarding for pets who are recovering from an illness or medical procedure.
3. In-Home Pet Boarding
While you might opt for a pet sitter, in-home pet boarding is an alternative. This option involves you bringing your animal to a pet sitter's house in your area before you leave for your vacation. Consider your pet's needs before deciding whether to choose in-home pet boarding or a pet sitter.
With in-home animal boarding, your dog or cat will have the chance to socialize with other dogs while a responsible pet owner supervises. They'll also receive individual attention and perhaps more daily interaction depending on whether you were going to have a pet sitter stay at your home or just drop in to make sure you four-legged friend is cared for. As for budgeting considerations, in-home boarding is sometimes more affordable than a pet sitter and you'll have the added security of not having to leave your house keys with a sitter.
There are various pet sitting websites that list the services of qualified pet sitters and in-home boarding services.
4. Family Friend or Neighbor
Do your friends love to give your pet love and affection? Next time you need to leave town, you might consider your animal-loving or pet-owning friends to visit your pet so they can get some playtime in, as well as making sure your canine companion is fed and safe.
Of course, the personality, responsibility and character of the friend or neighbor in question is essential, and they should have knowledge on pet care basics. Be equally cautious about choosing this option if your dog has special issues such as anxiety, has certain quirks or particular needs. And, be forewarned that if your cat has a history of marking new territory, this may be a problem that could strain the friendship.
That said, pet owners your dog knows and likes that are friends to both of you may be the best option, especially if you can return the favor someday.
5. Take Your Furry Friend with You
In certain circumstances, it might be fun and safe to travel with your pet. And, more hotels are becoming pet-friendly as the demand for pet-friendly services and excursions rises. For example, if you're off to camp at your family's favorite spot, your dog might enjoy the adventure.
Don't forget to confirm that your vacation spot and itinerary is pet-friendly before you arrive, since many places including some beaches and parks have strict policies around pets and may not allow dogs.
However, if your pet loves to travel this might be an opportunity to create some wonderful memories you'll treasure for years to come.