cat playing with toy before going to pet boarding facility

Where to Board Your Pet While On Vacation

Taking a family vacation usually means trying to find somewhere for your pet to stay while you’re away as well (unless you have an RV and plan to go across the country with your pet(s) in tow). But when you’re new to having pets or plans with one caretaker fall through at the last minute and you need help it’s good to know about the different options available. Here are four places to board your pet while on vacation!

Updated Oct. 2022

kitty sitting in cat tower before going to pet boarding facility

What to do With Your Pets While On Vacation

When heading out for vacation, as hard as it’ll be to leave your furry friends behind, you will have to have some sort of pet care lined up. There are a few different places your pets can go while on vacation, and they don’t all include boarding! Boarding your pet for vacation is often the last resort for people, but don’t worry, it isn’t a bad option! If your pets can’t stay with a family member/friend, or with a pet/house sitter at home, boarding is a great option.

What is Pet Boarding?

Pet boarding is essentially offering a home away from home for your pet. What their boarding stay will be like depends on where you take them, but they can be given anything from a kennel and playtime to their own pet hotel room! Choosing to board your furry friend is a choice many people have to make and because of that, many places have begun to offer pet boarding services.

Tips for Boarding Your Pet for the First Time

If you are boarding your animal for the first time, don’t worry, everyone has to start with day one! There are a few ways to ease into the boarding process, though. Many of which will help make things easier on your pet (especially your dog if you have one).

Here are some tips for boarding your furry friend for the first time:

  1. Introduce boarding to them before your extended trip to see how they do
  2. Keep your pet comfortable with some of their toys/blankets
  3. Make sure your pet is up to date on vaccinations
  4. Keep your pet on a consistent diet, as they’ll be fed at certain times during their housing experience
  5. If you have a dog, consider socialization training beforehand if you want them to play with other dogs

For more tips for boarding your pet, check out this helpful resource with tips for boarding pets.

Where to Board Your Pet During Your Vacation

There are four great places to board your pet during your vacation if a friend or family member isn’t available to pet sit.

  1. the vet
  2. the pet store
  3. camp
  4. pet hotel

Here is a bit more on each of these places to board your pets during vacation:

1. The Vet

Some veterinarians offer to board cats, dogs, and even reptiles and birds. Though this form of boarding is typically in a cage/kennel with no “playtime,” it can be beneficial if your animal requires medication, some shots, or medical supervision. In some cases, this can cost a bit less than other pet boarding options. Choose a vet that you’ve seen before and trust. The employees should be kind, helpful, willing to show you the boarding area, and upfront about any and all fees. This option for boarding your furry friend might be the best inexpensive option for your cat, for example!

2. Pet Store

Like the vet, some pet stores offer to house animals in kennels where your furry friend will receive food, water, a clean area to sleep in, and a few walks a day if needed. Petsmart Pets Hotel also has an add-on option for doggie day camp, or playtime, during the day where dogs can play together and run around or go potty all day as opposed to only stretching during walks. This is a very popular way to board pets!

3. Camp

A camp for your pet, like doggie camp, is a place where your pet can run around free all day, similar to doggie day camp at Petsmart, but it’s included in the boarding fee. Here, pets aren’t walked twice a day since they’re left out to play and go potty until they are taken to their cabins or kennels for meals and bedtime.

4. Pet Hotel

The last place to board your animal during vacation is one of the most fun, at a pet hotel! A pet hotel is a great option if you have a bigger budget. There are so many out there nowadays but typically your pets get their own room (that you pick the size of) that comes with some sort of bed and you can select various packages for your pet. If you want to board your furry friend in style, a pet hotel is the best option!

I hope this list has helped give you some ideas for where to board your pet while on vacation! Happy travels!

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ideas for boarding your pet while traveling
Where to Board Your Pet While On Vacation

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