If you’re a busy parent or an overextended entrepreneur, it can be tough to balance your work and personal life. Often in the process, our beloved pets get overlooked. Nevertheless, they’re members of the family and a source of unconditional love, so you want to be extra careful about where and how your dog is cared for. That’s especially true when you’re traveling.
Get a Housesitter
To keep your beloved pet comfortable at home, one option is to get a housesitter. That way, you get twice the benefit: someone on hand to keep your home secure (bring in the mail, water houseplants, make sure everything’s locked up, etc.) and a temporary companion for your pet.
Another option is to try reaching out to a friend or relative. People sometimes welcome the chance to get away, even if it’s just across town for a few days (which makes house sitting a kind of “staycation”). Offer them a few bucks or a gift card, and you will have found optimal dog care for a lot less than you’d pay for a kennel.
Travels with Rover
Another way to avoid being separated from your pet (and avoid the cost of boarding) is to take him along with you. It’s a viable option if you’re able to road-trip it because many hotel chains offer rooms for travelers with dogs. La Quinta, Marriott, and Best Western are affordable and accommodating hotels for travelers with pooches. Airbnb is another option if you’re looking for more room and a backyard for Fido to play in.
If you’ll just be gone for a few days, consider asking a neighbor to check in each day to make sure your furry friend is okay. It’s an easy way to make sure he is fed, taken out on a regular basis, and played with each day. If you have a dog door, invest in an automatic feeder, and all you’ll really need is someone to stop by for an hour or so each day. Just be sure to give your neighbor all of the information they’ll need to take the best care of your pet as possible, especially if your furry friend has any unique medical or emotional needs.
You can find dog sitters in your area who are willing to take in dogs on a temporary basis for a fee. A sitter will keep your dog engaged with someone who understands dogs and wants to see yours happy and healthy.
Consider giving your pet crate training, especially if he’s still a puppy, so he has somewhere to go when he’s feeling uncomfortable or insecure. A sufficiently large and comfortable crate can be a welcome haven if he’s staying with someone new and unfamiliar (a little online homework will lead you to the right crate for your dog). If your pup isn’t crate trained, you can keep him comfortable with a dog bed.
Check the Vet
Some veterinarians offer dog boarding services, though be aware that during certain times of year (i.e., summer and holiday seasons), you’ll likely need a reservation. This is often preferable to a kennel because veterinary care is available on-site, and there’s often room for your pooch to run, play and socialize with other dogs.
It’s always hard leaving your canine companion behind, especially if you’ll be gone for an extended period, and keeping him safe and well-cared for can be a costly proposition. Fortunately, there are many affordable options these days if you’re unable to find a willing friend or relative to lend a hand.