Going On Holiday?…. What Are You Going To Do With Your Pet?

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So you’re going on holiday! Destination selected, time off work booked and already planning on what to take. There is just one thing…. Who’s going to look after your pet??

You may be lucky enough to have a family member or friend who can pop in to feed and fuss your cat; but what if you have a dog? Who will walk her and would she be ok on her own? Unlikely! A daily walk simply isn’t enough. You would probably prefer someone to be around most of the time.

We pet parents now have more options than we have ever had before. Pet sitting and pet boarding to name a few,  it’s just a case of comparing what’s out there and making the best choice for you and your pet.

Have you considered if you able to take your pet on holiday?

Obviously cost is a major part of anyone’s decision, but regardless you have to take into consideration your pet’s age, behavioural and medicinal needs and whether it’s a cat or dog.

So if you’re off abroad to lay by the pool or the sea or getting back to nature somewhere in the UK.

Pet Sitting vs. Pet Boarding - Kennels

Boarding:

This is the most common method we’ve all most likely used.  It’s the most affordable option but the quality can sometimes be less.

Kennels tend to meet your pets basic needs; food, exercise and bathroom breaks.

There are other forms of boarding other than Kennels like doggy day care and even high end kennels which are more specialised.

Pros:  Kennels usually charge on a per day basis.

If your pet has a medical emergency the kennel staff will be experienced in dealing with the situation.

Offers privacy as you’re not allowing a stranger into your home and security as most kennels have double gates so if your pet slips by a person when their kennel is opened; they’re still enclosed.

Kennels also offer supervision; you know someone is going to be there during business hours with some kennels providing 24 hour staff. Most people find it reassuring to know that they and check on their pet anytime the kennel’s open.

Optional extras such as grooming, extra exercise and play are available in many kennels for a small fee.

Cons:

Some pets can find the experience very stressful.

It’s vitally important that your cat or dog is fully up to date with their vaccinations as with any location where animals are kept in close proximity passing bugs and parasites can be a problem. . This is the worst for puppies and kittens as their immune systems are very vulnerable.

Also with so many animals in one place staff can’t give each pet special attention like extra walks and playtime. This normally has to be purchased in addition to the boarding fees which can be seen as a positive or negative depending on your expectations.

Pet Siting vs. Pet Boarding - A cat at home in bed

Professional pet sitter:

This allows someone to keep a close eye on your pet without causing your pet the stress of being taken out of their home environment.  You may be a little unsure about having a stranger in your home, but this is why selecting a sitter that is trustworthy is essential.  Choose a company that screens their employees thoroughly.

Pros:

Your pet keeps their routine.  This is great if you have a puppy or kitten where toilet and feeding schedules are essential.

Kennels are notorious for illnesses and parasites. So when your pet is able to stay in their own environment, exposure to disease is minimal.

In the event of an emergency experienced pet sitter’s are able to handle any health emergency that may occur. This is great if your pet has specific dietary or medicinal needs.

Pet sitters are able to give special attention and playtime which are usually charged for at kennels.

Pet sitters are also handy for bringing in the mail, watering plants and just their presence at the property turning lights on and off may deter burglars while you’re away.

Cons:

For all the experience comes the price tag; fees are normally done per house visit so it can add up fast if your pet requires to be let out multiple times a day i.e. if you have a puppy or kitten.

Some pet sitters may only visit the property to feed and walk the pet which removes many of the other benefits mentioned. If this is the case you may prefer to ask a friendly neighbour with a promise of returning the favour.

If your pet has trouble with strangers then pet sitters will not go down well.

Pet Sitting vs. Pet Boarding

Professional House Sitters:

Professional House-Sitters is a company that was started specifically to bring together home owners with a suitable sitter, in return for free accommodation, to take care of pets, homes and gardens so owners can have peace of mind when they are away.

Home owners or pet and house sitters can become members and actively seek each other out.