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When Your Pet Needs Special Care: How To Choose A Boarding Facility

by Stella Robinson

If you have an older pet, or one that needs daily medication or special medical treatment, you may be reluctant to board your animal. But there are times when you'll need to find care for your dog or cat, and a pet boarding facility with the right caregivers can be much safer and provide more advanced care than having a pet sitter drop by your home.

Here are three features you'll want to look for in a pet boarding facility to ensure that your older or special needs pet gets the attention they deserve while you're away from home.

1. Medical care.

Not many facilities actually have a vet on staff, but at least one of the caregivers should be a trained veterinary technician who is able to give oral medications and injections as needed. Your pet boarding facility should also have an established relationship with an area veterinarian or be willing and able to consult with your vet as needed during your absence. 

If your pet needs medicine or special care like regular IV fluids, ask if you can bring your pet in before boarding and observe how staff manages the treatment. You'll likely have to pay a little for their time, but it will give you peace of mind that the employees at the boarding kennel you choose are qualified to provide the necessary care.

2. Feeding options.

Most boarding kennels allow you—or even require you—to bring your own food. If your pet has allergies or other issues with some types of foods, make sure that the facility you are considering has processes in place to ensure that each pet gets the food designated for them. You don't want your pet to have health issues because they were getting the wrong food or treats. 

You'll also want to write down instructions for feeding your special needs pet, including the types of foods that are allowed, what the animal's allergies are, how often meals and treats should be given and what to do if your pet ingests something that's not on the menu. 

3. Interaction with other pets.

Some boarding choices offer your dog or cat the option of interacting with other, well-behaved animals. While this can be a lot of fun for the right pet, your special needs pet may not benefit from being around other animals. 

Make sure that the facility requires any incoming pets to be fully vaccinated so that your older or weaker pet is not exposed to any illnesses. As well, incoming animals should be treated with a flea and tick medication that will keep them from spreading any pests to other pets.

You'll also want to ask about how staff ensures that disease is not spread between animals. Do they have a quarantine or isolation option for animals that become sick during their stay? How do employees clean and sterilize supplies and themselves in between interactions? 

Making a pet boarding facility choice for your older or medically fragile animal should hinge on how experienced the staff is with special needs pets and what processes they have in place to provide special care. Don't be afraid to ask specific questions about the care that will be provided for your pet. For more information, contact companies like All Pets Hospital Ltd.