Is Your Dog Going to a Boarding Kennel? Make Sure Your Behaviour Doesn't Make Them Anxious

For dog owners, going on holiday normally involves finding somewhere for the dog to stay while you're away. Unfortunately, this can be quite stressful for the dog, since they don't understand what's going on and where their owner is.

With a particularly anxious dog, you can't stop their worries completely, but you can do a few things to make them a bit calmer. Packing familiar items, and finding a calm, friendly boarder are good ways to make a dog feel more at home, but one of the most powerful things you can do is to keep your own behaviour in check.

Follow these tips when you're preparing for your holiday, and your dog will have a better experience while you're away.

Get yourself feeling positive

To help your dog feel calm, you need to be in the right mindset yourself. It can be helpful to visit the boarding kennels in advance so you can see that there's nothing to worry about. Talk to the people operating the kennels as early as possible to arrange this.

Remember, too, that your dog will be in good hands and that you'll only be away for a short time.

Pack carefully

Dogs are extremely perceptive, and unusual activities can make them worry. This is particularly the case if you've been away before and they associate the packing of suitcases with your disappearance.

If you can, pack your things out of the dog's sight, perhaps in the bedroom with the door closed. Try and keep anything hidden that might make them anxious.

Keep things normal

Try to avoid any unusual activities in the lead-up to your holiday, and stick to your routine as closely as possible. If your time off work has started, this could mean getting up at the same time to keep your dog happy.

Don't make the drop-off stressful

One of the worst parts can be actually dropping the dog off at the kennels. Make sure you stay calm and don't give your dog anything to worry about.

Make the journey as nice as possible for the dog, with plenty of treats if that helps keep them calm. Leave enough time that you don't have to rush out of the house.

When you arrive, drop off the dog and leave quickly without hanging around, as prolonging your departure often increases anxiety. If there's anything you need to discuss with the kennels, contact them in advance so you don't have to spend time in conversation when you take the dog.