Be sure to make plans for your pets early. The best kennels board up quickly.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- As summer vacation travel begins, be sure to include the family pets in your vacation plans.
Whether you choose an in-home pet sitter or a boarding kennel, the BBB urges you to start the selection process early! Top-notch facilities can book up fast during the holidays and popular vacation times.
The BBB offers has this advice to help pet owners choose the best care for their four-legged family members.
Pet Sitters - If you believe your pet would do better in the comfort of your home, you may want to hire a professional pet sitter.
The BBB offers these guidelines:
- Recommendations - Ask friends, neighbors or your veterinarian if they can recommend a professional pet care giver.
- Training - Services can vary widely. Interview prospective pet sitters to find out what services they will provide and whether they are trained to administer any necessary medications or emergency first aid.
- Fees and services - Find out what their fee includes and their payment requirements. Some pet sitters are willing to do non-pet related chores, such as bringing in the mail, watering plants, turning lights on or off or even staying overnight.
- References - Ask the pet sitter for personal references and call them to inquire about the quality of pet care they received.
- Security - The pet sitter will have access to your home, so you will want to find out if they are bonded and whether they have commercial liability insurance coverage.
- Record - Check the pet sitter out with the BBB.
Boarding - If you are boarding your pets at a kennel, the BBB suggests that you take these nine steps:
- Recommendations – Get recommendations from your veterinarian or check with the American Boarding Kennels Association.
- Personal visit - Check the facility for cleanliness and safety of the kennel and cages.
- Licensing - Ask if the kennel is properly licensed. Research your state’s specific animal-to-staff ratio and animal-to- square footage requirements to see if the kennel you are considering meets those requirements.
- Staff - Note the friendliness of staff members and ask about their experience. Be sure to ask if anyone is on the premises overnight.
- Vaccinations - Make sure the facility requires all pets to have proof of immunizations and ask about their procedures for flea and tick control.
- Drop-off/pick-up policies - Facilities may not allow you to drop off or pick up your pet on weekend days which may extend the stay of your pet and increase the cost.
- Regular updates – Find out how the facility will keep you updated. Many top-notch facilities offer live web cams so you can see your pet via their website.
- Emergencies – Ask about procedures in case your pet has a medical emergency.
- Research - Check the kennel out with the BBB.
For more information, please visit BBB or call 1-877-317-7236 toll-free in N.C. and S.C.