Archived Message
Alternative boarding?

by Barbara

Hi! I am currently checking out boarding options for Touquet. I have never left him with anybody but his grandmother (a four-hour drive from our home), and perhaps I'm just overprotective, but the thought of boarding him makes me a nervous wreck! I recently discovered a "kennel alternative" here in Ottawa. Your pet is boarded in a private home where there are no other animals (or children, if this is what you request). You provide your pet's schedule and his food, toys, etc., and he is treated just the way he is at home. This to me sounds ideal, but here is the problem. The operators come to your home and pick up the dog, and return him on the specified date. Even though I will have checked out the home in advance, how do I know they will really take him there, or that he will be treated well? Wouldn't it be awfully traumatic for a little Maltese to be taken from his home by strangers? This seems like a much friendlier alternative than kennels (where I thnk Touquet would be terrified). Does anyone have any thoughts/opinions on this?


Dear Barbara:
It sounds like a perfect alternative to broading. I think somewhere down the line you will have to put your trust in these people if you decide to go in that direction., I, myself, have not had to broad either of my Maltese. We are talking about an Alaskian Cruise someday and the only way I'll go is to have one of my children watch the girls. My children live 1200 miles away. Prepare your dog by having friends come and take him from you home for a few hours and let them report how it has worked. Good luck and keep us informed. And try to enjoy yourself.

Barbara, is there any possibilty that a friend can check up on your Maltese at the home where it is being boarded? You should ask that question and also get the phone number, maybe you can do a preview visit with you and your maltese. Would'nt be nice if a site on the home page could be set up by Jay for babysitting purposes? I would love to leave my "Baby" with another maltese lover!!

Hi Barbara, Are you in an area where there is a professional pet sitter? I just had one here in the Chicago area for the first time, and I was quite happy with her. I was quite surprised how big this professional pet sitting is. If not, you should definitely ask for references, and talk to people who have used this service. I have never heard of anything like that..but they should be able to give you at least 3 references. What about your vet? My vet has a list of pet sitters. There is a national group in the States here. I'm not sure if your Ottawa is in Canada or Kansas. Also, if you got her from a reputable breeder, maybe they could help you? In spite of my vet recommending, I still asked for references. Good luck!! Bel and the m & m & m girls
-Bel and the m & m girls

We may be going on a 2 day vacation pretty soon and I don't have anybody to watch Pixie Bella. The vet I go to has a kennel at the hospital. I like the vet and his staff and was considering this. Does anybody have any experience good or bad leaving their loved one at a pet hosptial kennel where you take your dog regularly for medical reasons?

i am desperately seeking someone on long island, n.y. with whom i can leave my 1 yr old "tony" when we go on vacation. our relatives are either not dog friendly or they want him crated all day while they're at work. our vet can't suggest anyone and the thought of leaving him at a boarding kennel is not attractive to me. ideally, a breeder or another owner of a maltese would make me feel less guilty. any recommendations? use to use my dog groomer but she has moved and my husband won't let me use a house sitter. quite a dilemma! help please! JAN

Vicki, When Lucy was about 6 mo old, I left her for 10 days to go on a vacation that was planned and paid for before I got her. I left her at a boarding kennel which happened to be the place she always went for grooming. I paid extra to have them play with her 15 min twice a day. A friend went to see her every day on his lunch hour and he said she loved seeing him and having the time with him (he's her "special" friend) but was happy to go back to the handlers each time. My vet also has a boarding kennel, so the last time I was away (only for 3 days) I left her with them, thinking she knew these people and they could handle any "emergencies" better than the original place. My friend also went to visit her there. She wanted to leave with him every time and was not happy. When I got her home, she pooped on the floor (something she NEVER does) to let me know I'd made her unhappy and turnabout was fair play (she even "took" me to the spot she used to be SURE I'd see it. A week or so later when she had her heartworm check I told the vet about her displeasure with the boarding facilities. What the vet said, kind of makes sense. She said sometimes when dogs board at the vets the are upset because it is the same place they go for shots and other medical stuff, so rather than being "unhappy" she was probably worried the whole time that these "bad" things were waiting to happen to her. Lucy is really sensitive and a true drama queen at the vets, so I tend to think the vet was onto something. Lucy certainly got good care there (though they also didn't have the playtime option and maybe she was just lonely--you know how our Maltese children are so people oriented). Anyhow, that's two sides of the coin. I will be away over 4th of July and Lucy is going back to the original kennel rather than the vet.
-cathy brown

Thanks to you all for your friendly advice. I am feeling much better about pursuing this option. I have already filled out lengthy questionnaires about Touquet's schedule, playtime, etc. The next step will be to have the proprietor match me up with an appropriate home. I will arrange a visit to meet the people who would care for Touquet, and then make a decision. (I am told that Touquet would even be able to sleep with these people, since that is what he is used to!) If all goes well, I will try it for a weekend to see how he makes out. I will definitely let you all know how it goes!

What timing! I was just about to post a question about kennel vs. pet-sitting. I have been using a pet sitter that comes by twice a day. Kirby loves Nancy and going for walks with her, but she's still alone an awful lot. I'm going on a 5 day trip and considered a kennel, thinking she may get more attention or at least have more to keep her mind occupied. I'm just not sure I have the heart to do that--it's like doggie jail! The only time she's ever crated is at the groomer (which isn't a pleasant experience for her.) I'll probably continue to use the pet sitting service since I know she's been fine on shorter trips, but when I'm gone very many days and come home she acts like she thought I was never coming home. They can make you feel so guilty! I wish I could find (and afford?) a service like you're talking about. But that would have the same draw-backs as imposing on my friends--she isn't consistant enough about her potty habits. Oh, what to do....

I've decided to go with a pet sitting service for my sweet little dolly. i only adopted her about 5 months ago (she was 3 1/2) & feel that she'll be less stressed if she stays at her own home even without me. I found a service run by "active seniors" in my area & have checked them out & met with the woman that will be staying. She seems wonderful & will even allow dolly to sleep with her! So hopefully her routine will be as unchanged as possible. It's about us$28 a day, but I figure not only my sweetie will be more comfortable, but someone will be watching my apartment also!

At my vet, there is a business card with a treat attached to it for cats and one for dogs. It's a babysitting agency for animals! I'm home most of the time. I'd love to do something like this. I'm able to give plenty of TLC and I have a vet across the street in case of emergencies. Maybe I'll give this person a call to see how to get started in this sort of thing. Does anybody know what a reasonable and fair charge would be? Do you have to have any special training or licensing?

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