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Dog Travel: What To Do When Fido Has To Stay Behind


On Friday, we showed you How To Travel With Your Dog (Without “Ruffing It!), but what’s a dog-loving adventurer to do when their pooch has to stay behind? Worry not! We’ve got some boarding options that are so much fun, your dog might not even notice you’re gone! (Just kidding, they love ya.) Plus, we spoke to the experts about for what to look for in a boarding situation, how to make your dog feel at home and more!


Aaron and Rocky

DogVacay Co-founder Aaron Hirschhorn with his dog Rocky. Photo courtesy of DogVacay

DogVacay is an online marketplace that connects dog parents in need of pet-care services with qualified pet caregivers. Forget the kennel! DogVacay has thousands of vetted and insured dog lovers across the U.S. who are just waiting to treat your dog like one of the pack. Find the perfect match from hosts in your area and book online. Peace of mind perks include 24/7 customer support, photo updates, a money-back guarantee and, of course, a cage-free stay for your pup.

Aaron Hirschhorn, Co-founder of DogVacay, is in the business of making sure your pet is well cared-for while you are away. Check out his tips for making sure your pup is well-prepared and comfortable with their new sitter:

Get to Know Your Host. At DogVacay, we offer to set up meet and greets between pet parents and potential hosts, so both owners and dogs can get to know each other before a stay. It’s important that you are comfortable knowing how a sitter will interact with your dog and that your dog receives them kindly. It helps to discuss your approach to pet parenting with a new sitter, such as how your dog is or isn’t being trained, their personality, their daily routine, how you praise and discipline, so that the host can offer a similar environment to home.

Remind Them of Home. Just as you’re going to miss Fido on your trip, he’s going to miss you too! You can leave behind a few articles of clothing, like a T-shirt or a blanket, as well as your dog’s favorite toys so he can be reminded of home. It’s also a good idea to give your host more than enough of your dog’s usual food to last through the stay, so as not to vary their diet while you’re away.

Be Detailed. Taking the time to write down detailed instructions for your host can ensure that your dog is getting the same care and attention as he would with you. Whether it’s receiving medication, directions for making Fido’s favorite treat or a list of his favorite games, you’ll have greater peace of mind knowing your host knows exactly how to make his doggie vacation great.

D Pet Hotels

This pup is living the high life! Photo courtesy of D Pet Hotels Chelsea

D Pet Hotels’ top- notch accommodations are turning heads (and waggin’ tails!) in LA, NYC and Arizona. We spoke to Kerry Brown, co-owner of D Pet Hotels Chelsea, who gave us the inside scoop:

“D Pet Hotels is a luxury dog hotel with the main goal of providing a home away from home for your pup. Our suites, flat screens and expansive dog parks may sound extravagant, but the idea is to make it fun and emulate the home environment as much as possible. What dog doesn’t feel comfy curled up in their own suite, with their own bed and toys, watching TV after a delicious dinner? We want to provide the best service possible, and whether you choose us or not, we want you to find a boarding facility that works with your needs and ensures a safe and comfortable experience for your dog. Here are some tips when selecting a place to leave your dog:

Ask Questions. When selecting a place to board your dog, ask lots of questions! Is someone there 24/7? Is there a vet on call? If your dog will be mixed with other pups, will they be separated based on size and temperament?  What does a normal day look like for the dogs?

 Go and see the boarding facility in person. Whenever possible, be sure to actually go and see the space. While there, ask to see where they sleep, where they play and where they get fed. This can provide great comfort and take away your stress or raise a red flag!

 Establish Communication. Ensure great communication with the boarding facility, whether via email, text or phone for when you are away. Never hesitate to check in on your pup, even if only to hear if she ate her breakfast. It never hurts to ensure extra care and attention.”

Now that you can be sure that your pooch is safe and sound back at home, check out fun ways for you to play during your trip at!

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. This is great!, people look up hosts in their area who will care for our dog in their own home. Our dogs will feel comfortable. I enjoy reading your article. Thanks for sharing this.

    October 10, 2013

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  1. How To Travel With Your Dog (Without “Ruffing” It!) | Zerve Blog - Find What To Do: Activities, Tours, Cruises, Shows and More

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