An Anxious Dog
It doesn’t matter whether it’s the first time or the tenth, there is a little trepidation when you leave your fur-family somewhere that isn’t home. Well-adjusted or anxious, there is an overwhelming urge to see how they’re doing. At first, you just tap your foot and then you look at your phone. Did they post a picture yet? Is there an issue?
Is no news good news?
I get it. I sent my own puppy away to show for conformation. My first urge was to call to see how she was doing. Was she calm? Was she okay with other dogs? How anxious was she?
Was she happy?
Dropping off your dog at a boarding kennel can almost be as stressful on us as it is on our fur-family. In fact, that stress we feel can easily be transferred to our pups.
So, what can we do about it to alleviate their stress and our own?
Practice Makes Them Comfortable
Consistency is important for dogs. When we’re training, we repeat the process until they’re good at something: sitting, laying down, their recall. When it comes to visiting a kennel, we can’t expect every dog to be comfortable with the process immediately. Some will get the process immediately, but others need to go through it a couple of times before they’re able to calm down. Taking them for a day of daycare or a single overnight stay before the big run is great. It teaches them that you’ll return.
Pro Tip: Does your dog like car rides? Practice getting in and out of the car and going for short trips. Some dogs don’t do well in vehicles while others only get into them when they go to the vet.
Observe Their Behaviour
There is no question that you are the safety net for your dog. They could be protective of you or just generally act differently, better or worse, in your presence. Understanding your dog’s quirks is a great way to know how they will react when you aren’t there. How much exercise do they need? Is sniffing sufficient or do they need to race around for an hour a day?
Learn and Teach
Understanding anxiety is very important to helping our fur-family. Once we understand what it means, we can start to desensitize them to the triggers that put them into a heightened state. Learn different techniques that will help them self-soothe.
Pro Tip: Is your dog already anxious? Introduce them to a secluded room in your house in small increments so they get used to people walking around the door without them having to be in the room with the humans.
Prepare in Advance
Do you have everything ready for your pup’s vacation? It can be very hectic in the hours before we set off on a road trip. Having the dog food and toys ready will help set your pups up for a comfortable time away because they won’t be feeling your anxiety.
Communicate With The Dog Kennel
Do you know what the boarding kennel expects? Have they told you what to bring? We offer every guest an indestructible raised Kuranda bed, but welcome them bringing their own in addition to toys or “home” items.
Pro Tip: Giving your pup something of yours to smell is a great idea to remind them of you while they’re away.
Helping Your Anxious Fur-Family
Whether your dog is anxious already or just has the jitters of going somewhere new, there are many things you can do to help them get the best out of their stay. Speak to your boarding kennel and find out what’s expected and what you can do to make it easier. For some of our guests, the best process is to drop them off and leave while others need an extended goodbye to make sure the dog is comfortable. Finding a kennel that will accommodate this is important so you know you can have a place to trust for future vacations.
Curious how your pup would do? Message us today and we can set up a tour.
Want to try out our kennel? Check availability now.