Tips on How to Find a Comfortable Kennel for your Pet During the Holidays

December 11, 2012

CHICAGO, IL- November 27,  2012 - As much as pet owners may want to take their furry or feathered friends with them wherever they go over the holidays, sometimes pets cannot come with. Finding a trustworthy kennel or pet care service becomes essential. The Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois (BBB) has created a checklist to help pet owners choose a safe and reliable home-away-from-home for their pets.

Consumers have become much more proactive in researching boarding facilities for their pets. The BBB had had an increase of 66 percent in the number of people seeking information; 3,780 inquiries for this 12 month period compared to 2,274 for the previous 12 months.

“Many pets are viewed as family members. Having to leave them at home adds more stress during the holidays,” said Steve J. Bernas, president & CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois. “Doing research before dropping off your pet will make you feel more confident that they will be well taken care of while you are away.”

When looking for a reliable kennel, the BBB recommends the following checklist:

  • Check the kennel out with the BBB first to make sure they have a good track record for keeping customers satisfied at
  • Consult friends, neighbors, veterinarian or local animal shelters for recommendations.
  • Personally visit the facilities. Check for cleanliness and offensive odors, and note the overall safety of the kennel and cages.
  • If your pet is prone to running away, ask about steps the kennel has taken to make their facilities escape-proof.
  • Ask about how your pet may come in contact with other animals. Some kennels let animals play together while others keep them separate at all times.
  • Ask about the feeding schedule, water accessibility and frequency of – or fees related to – exercise.
  • Note the friendliness of staff members and how they interact with the other boarding pets. Ask about their background and experience.
  • Make sure the facility requires that all entering pets have proof of immunization and ask about their policies regarding flea and tick control.
  • Ask about the hours for drop off and pick up and make sure you understand their billing policy.
  • Ask what happens in the case of a medical emergency or other unexpected situations.

For more advice on finding reputable businesses around the holidays, visit



As a private, non-profit organization, the purpose of the Better Business Bureau is to promote an ethical marketplace. BBBs help resolve buyer/seller complaints by means of conciliation, mediation and arbitration. BBBs also review advertising claims, online business practices and charitable organizations. BBBs develop and issue reviews on businesses and nonprofit organizations and encourage people to check out a company or charity before making a purchase or donation.