What Should I Look for When Choosing Somewhere to Board My Dog?

Choosing a dog boarding facility is something most dog owners will need to do at some point in the life of their pet. Whether you’re headed to a destination wedding or need to travel for work, there might not always be a convenient option to babysit your precious pup while you’re away. If that’s the case, you need to start investigating the best dog boarding facilities in West Des Moines, IA.

As a dog owner, you expect more from a boarding facility than a kennel where your dog can sleep and a few staff members who love dogs. It’s important to look closely at both the facilities and the staff, as well as their approach to keeping your dog safe, happy and comfortable while you’re away. Here are the baseline traits that set the best dog boarding facilities apart from more typical ones:

  • Safety rating: Above all, you want your dog to be safe while you’re away. That means trusting a boarding facility that has a track record of excellence—no injuries, deaths or sordid history of animal abuse. A top safety rating, as determined by other pet owners, is an indication of a great facility.
  • Amount of playtime: Your dog shouldn’t be caged or kenneled for long stretches of the day! They deserve playtime—either solo, with a person or with other pups. Ask prospective boarding facilities how much playtime is incorporated into each day. Also, ask about options for anti-social or aggressive dogs and how they’re handled.
  • Staff experience: Being an animal lover isn’t enough when it comes to running a boarding facility. Staff should include people with veterinary backgrounds, pet first-aid certifications and other animal-specific safety credentials. Get the scoop on the staff and get ready to be impressed by top-rated boarding facilities.
  • Personal attention: Choosing a dog boarding facility in West Des Moines, IA has a lot to do with the attention your pet will receive. Are they an anxious breed that needs more human interaction? An energetic puppy that needs to be run out before they’re put in for the night? Get a sense of how much personal attention your dog will get and make any needs or expectations clear.
  • Value: What exactly do you get for the price when you board your dog at the facility? Most rates focus on the bare essentials, but it’s also important to have the option for more—grooming, toys, blankets, etc. Do some math and add up what your dog is getting and what it’s going to cost you. Don’t just look at price—look at value.
  • Evaluations: When you apply to board your dog, what kind of standards or criteria do you need to meet? Often, this represents attention to detail. Providing vaccination records or filling out a long questionnaire about your dog is often a sign that the facility does things right and cares about providing a safe, comfortable experience for your dog.

It’s always hard leaving your beloved dog with someone else for stretches of time. Choosing the best boarding facility in West Des Moines, IA will give you the confidence you need. After all, a great boarding experience will be like a vacation for them!

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