One of the most difficult situations we come across as pet owners is what to do with our dogs when we go away for extended periods of time. It could be a business trip, vacation, etc. As much as we’d love to take our furry friends everywhere with us, the reality is, sometimes that’s just not possible.
For those of us not lucky enough to have a family member or neighbor to watch over our pets while we’re away, what options are left?
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What They Are: The Pawliday Inn
Puns aside, pet hotels have become a popular option among pet owners. In fact, the Pawliday Inn, ironically, is the actual name of several operating pet hotels. Depending on what you’re picturing in your head, pet hotels are pretty much exactly what they sound like, your dog is treated as if they were a guest in a hotel. It’s generally known as a “boarding facility” but “pet hotel and resort” is a little easier on the ears, so many establishments have rebranded and expanded their offerings. Pet hotels are great, because you know your dog isn’t sitting alone at home while you’re away. They have their own room, bed, food and water bowls. There’s normally some kind of pool, dog toys for all the guests, daily and nightly walks, and a big play area to run around and have fun. Some facilities even offer doggy spas, for those who have had a long, stressful day filled with chasing tennis balls and eating treats.
Ideally, your dog will be entertained, comfortable and playing with other dogs the whole time you’re away. They’ll still miss you and their home, but hopefully they won’t have to think about it as much! This is a huge advantage that places like a normal boarding kennel or even a neighbor’s house may not offer.
Doggy Day Care
As you’ll notice when doing your research, many of the hotels and resorts also offer a doggy day care. For pet owners who feel guilty leaving their pet home alone while at work all day, this can be a lifesaver.
Your dog can essentially benefit from all the offerings of the pet hotel and resort, without the staying over part. It’s like dropping your dog off at school before you go to work and then picking them up on the way home. This way, they get to have fun with their friends all day, instead of laying around waiting for you to get home. Your dog will be outside, going on walks, and exerting some of the energy they would otherwise be building up at home.
Sure, some dogs are completely fine staying at home and waiting for you, it doesn’t bother them. But some dogs (and ultimately their owners) can definitely benefit from the stimulation a doggy daycare setting provides. Younger dogs, high-energy dogs, and dogs who struggle with separation can all benefit greatly from doggy day care.
Cost & Experience
As is the case with the human hotel industry, quality and price may vary. The good news is, boarding your dog overnight at a pet hotel might not be as expensive as it sounds. There are plenty of budget-friendly places out there, it just takes a little research! Usually, for an average pet resort and hotel, you can expect to pay anywhere from $20-$200 a night. Some may be more inexpensive, and some are most definitely more expensive. No matter the level of “luxury” you and your dog can afford, there are pet hotels for everyone, and most of them are fantastic!
Is it right for my dog?
If budget is not a concern, it’s hard to argue that a pet hotel might be the perfect option for those times you have to be away. And for those who don’t need a “pet hotel and resort” , it’s still interesting to know that if the time did come, the option is available!