How to Train & Prepare Your Dog for Boarding
Leaving your dog unprepared for boarding can stress your dog greatly — it might even prove to be a traumatic experience for your dog. The aftereffects can last for years.
To avoid this, it’s essential to find a suitable boarding facility for your dog beforehand. And it is also crucial to prepare your pal to be able to deal with the upcoming changes in life.
On that note, here in this guide, we’ll outline how to train and prepare your dog for breeding. It will ensure a smooth transition and peace of mind during your separation.
Let’s get started!
Preparing Your Dog Mentally
Choosing the Right Boarding Facility
The first step in preparing your dog for boarding is settle for the right caregiver. Research various options in your area, read reviews, and visit potential boarding places. Ensure that the caregiver’s facility is clean and well-maintained.
If you’re entrusting a formal dog boarding facility, you might also want to look for trained professionals who love animals. But if you’re entrusting a friend, family, or a dog owner in your vicinity, make sure they’re able to care for your dog as if it’s their own!
Also, if this is your first time reviewing and analyzing dog boarding facilities, we highly recommend settling for a five-star facility only. Browse and compare all your options online!
Or better, make use of WoofConnect dog boarding to find a suitable dog parent in your own vicinity — so your furry pal doesn’t even have to leave the familiar streets!
Gradual Exposure to New Environments
Dogs can become really anxious when placed in unfamiliar surroundings. To alleviate this anxiety, expose your dog to new environments gradually. Take them on short trips or visits to friends' houses to get them used to different surroundings. This practice will help them adapt more easily when they're in a boarding facility.
Socialization with Other Dogs and People
Socialization is crucial for your dog's mental health. Set up playdates with other dogs and promote interactions with different people. This will make your dog feel more at ease around unfamiliar faces and reduce stress when they're with other dogs at the boarding facility.
We recommend beginning with the following activities:
- Meet-and-Greets: Organize informal gatherings with friends or neighbors who have dogs. These meet-and-greets provide a comfortable setting for your dog to interact with both familiar and new canine companions.
- Pet-Friendly Events: Attend pet-friendly events or festivals where your dog can meet different people and dogs. The bustling atmosphere of such events can simulate the social interactions they might encounter in a boarding facility.
- Visits to Dog-Friendly Stores: Take your dog along when you go shopping at dog-friendly stores.
If time permits, you can even get your furry pal enrolled in puppy socialization classes.
Preparing Your Dog Physically
Along with mental support and prep, your dog also needs some physical preparation. You can do this by implementing these:
Health Check-Up and Vaccinations
Before boarding your dog, schedule a thorough health check-up with your veterinarian. Ensure that your dog is up-to-date on vaccinations and treatments for parasites. A healthy dog is better equipped to handle the stress of being in a new environment.
Exercise and Energy Release
A tired dog is a happy and less anxious dog. In the days leading up to boarding, provide plenty of exercise and playtime to help your dog release excess energy. Long walks, fetch sessions, or trips to the dog park can help your dog relax during their stay at the boarding facility.
Grooming and Hygiene
Grooming helps dogs feel comfortable and clean. So, make sure your dog is clean and free from fleas and ticks, and their nails are trimmed. This will help them stay comfortable and healthy during their stay.
Packing for Your Dog
A week before the boarding, pack your dog's bags. Include essential items such as food, medications, leash, collar, and identification tags. The food supply should suffice for the duration of the stay or you can make an equivalent payment to the boarding facility. Don't forget any special dietary instructions.
Apart from that, pack familiar items like their favorite toy, blanket, or bedding. It will make the transition smooth. Plus, having these comfort items with them can provide a sense of security and make them feel more at home in the new environment.
To avoid losing your dog's belongings, label them clearly with dog’s name and your contact information. Organize their items neatly so that the boarding staff can easily access everything they need to care for your dog.
Communicating with the Boarding Staff
You’ve trained and prepared your dog. But to ensure everything goes as planned, you ought to communicate some details with the boarding staff too, such as:
- Dog's habits
- Medications (if required)
- Any special needs
Share information about their feeding schedule, allergies, and any behavioral quirks. The more they know about your dog, the better they can cater to their individual needs.
Also, leave detailed emergency contact information with the boarding facility, including your phone number and an alternate contact in case you cannot be reached. This ensures that you can be quickly reached if any issues arise during your dog's stay.
Preparing for the Drop-Off Day
Here are some tips for the drop-off day:
- Arrive at the boarding facility on time as scheduled. Being punctual allows you to complete any necessary paperwork and have a smooth transition for your dog.
- When it's time to say goodbye, maintain a calm and reassuring tone. Dogs can pick up on their owner's emotions, so staying composed will help them feel more at ease. Avoid making the farewell overly emotional.
- Respect the facility's procedures for drop-off. This may include specific check-in protocols, paperwork, and any additional requirements they have in place.
Once you’ve boarded the dog, you can let your mind relax. Remember, ‘trusting’ the professionals with their job is the key to a smooth experience.
If you keep calling and continue requesting to video call your dog, it might be difficult for the dog to adjust. But that doesn’t mean, you should miss out on your scheduled video calls and refrain from acquiring regular updates. Feel free to ring the facility at least once a week!