Kennel Worries? Will Your Dog Be Happy Away from Home?

If you’re planning on leaving your pet at a kennel while you’re away, you may be wondering, “Will my dog be okay?” It’s natural to have concerns about your pet’s well-being while you’re not around. However, with the right preparation and research, you can ensure that your dog is safe and happy during their stay.

Boarding your dog at a kennel can have many benefits, such as round-the-clock care and socialization with other dogs. However, it’s important to choose a reputable facility that prioritizes your pet’s health and happiness. Before booking, do your due diligence by researching online reviews, visiting the facility, and asking questions about their policies and procedures.

While it’s impossible to guarantee that your dog will have a stress-free experience at the kennel, there are steps you can take to prepare them for their stay. These include packing familiar items, such as their favorite toys and bedding, and ensuring that they’re up-to-date on all necessary vaccinations. By taking these precautions and choosing a trustworthy kennel, you can rest assured that your pet will be in good hands while you’re away.

Common Problems Dogs Have After Kennel Stays

If you are planning to board your dog, it is essential to know the potential problems that may arise to ensure your dog’s safety and well-being. Here are some common issues that dogs may have after a kennel stay:

  • Stress and Anxiety: Being away from their owners and in a new environment can cause stress and anxiety in dogs. Signs of stress may include excessive barking, whining, or destructive behavior.
  • Illness: Dogs can catch illnesses from other dogs in kennels, such as kennel cough, which is highly contagious. It is essential to make sure your dog is up to date on all vaccinations before boarding.
  • Diarrhea and Vomiting: Changes in diet, water, and the environment can cause digestive problems in dogs, leading to diarrhea and vomiting. This can also be a symptom of an underlying illness.
  • Dehydration: Dogs may not drink enough water while in kennels, especially if they are stressed or anxious. Dehydration can lead to serious health problems, so it is important to make sure your dog has access to clean water at all times.
  • Injuries: Dogs may injure themselves while in kennels, such as from jumping or climbing on their enclosure. It is essential to make sure the kennel is safe and secure before leaving your dog.

Woman Kennel Owner smiling

It is important to choose a reputable kennel with experienced staff who can provide proper care and attention to your dog. You should also provide the kennel with detailed information about your dog’s diet, medications, and any medical conditions they may have.

If you notice any symptoms of illness or distress in your dog after a kennel stay, it is essential to contact your veterinarian immediately.

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Sources: DoggySaurus

How to Prevent Dog Trauma from a Kennel Stay

Leaving your dog at a kennel can be a stressful experience for both you and your pet. However, there are several steps you can take to help prevent dog trauma during a kennel stay.

First, make sure you choose a reputable kennel that provides adequate care and attention to its guests. Research kennels in your area and read reviews from other pet owners to find a facility that meets your standards.

kennel owner doing inventory

When you drop off your dog, be sure to bring some of their toys and their dog bed to help them settle into the kennel. This can provide a sense of familiarity and comfort in an unfamiliar environment. Additionally, provide your dog with a few chew toys and stuffed animals, so they can keep themselves occupied while they are in their kennels.

It’s also important to provide the kennel staff with all necessary information about your dog, including any medical conditions, dietary restrictions, and behavioral issues. This can help them provide the best possible care for your pet.

If your dog has underlying issues like separation anxiety, solving the problem first will be mandatory. You can also get your dog familiar with the kennel before the stay and provide them with their food, contact information, and a bed. This can help your dog feel more comfortable and less anxious during their stay.

In addition, consider providing your dog with a day to acclimate to the kennel environment before leaving them for an extended stay. This can help reduce any kennel stress they may experience.

By taking these steps, you can help prevent dog trauma during a kennel stay and ensure that your pet is happy and healthy when you return.

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Sources: PawLeaks

How to Find a Kennel Your Dog Will Love


When searching for a kennel for your pet, make sure to visit the facilities in person. Look for clean and well-maintained areas. Check if the kennel provides enough space for your dog to move around and rest comfortably. Ensure that the kennel has proper ventilation, temperature control, and natural lighting.

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What Is a Good Base for a Dog Kennel?


The staff at the kennel should be friendly, knowledgeable, and experienced in handling dogs. Observe how they interact with the dogs and ask about their training and qualifications. Ensure that the staff-to-dog ratio is adequate to provide individual attention and care.


Check online reviews and ratings of the kennel from previous customers. Look for feedback on the staff, facilities, and overall experience. Consider both positive and negative reviews to get a complete picture. You can also ask for recommendations from friends, family, or your veterinarian.

Remember, a good kennel will be clean and provide adequately sized lodging for each dog that allows for their own food and water bowls and protects against wind and rain. The kennel should also look escape-proof and safe. The staff should show a genuine interest and care about the health and well-being of your dog. 

By following these tips, you can find a kennel that your dog will love and where they will be safe and happy while you are away.

Preparing Your Dog for the Kennel

Vaccinations and Medications

Before boarding your dog, make sure they are up to date on all vaccinations required by the kennel. This includes rabies, distemper, and bordetella. If your dog requires any medications, pack them in their own labeled container and provide clear instructions to the kennel staff.

Packing Checklist

To ensure your dog is comfortable during their stay, pack familiar items such as their bed, toys, and blankets. Additionally, pack enough food for their stay and any treats they may enjoy. Label all items with your dog’s name to ensure they are not misplaced.

Training and Socialization

Prepare your dog for the kennel by gradually increasing the time spent away from you. Leave them for short periods and gradually increase the duration until they are comfortable being away from you for an extended period. Additionally, socialize your dog with other dogs to prepare them for being around other animals at the kennel.

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Sources: – K9 MagazinePawLeaks

What to Expect During Your Dog’s Stay

Feeding and Exercise Schedule

You can expect your dog to be fed according to the kennel’s schedule. Most kennels will provide food, but you can bring your dog’s regular food if you prefer. Be sure to inform the kennel staff of any dietary restrictions or allergies your dog may have. Exercise schedules vary by the kennel, but most will provide at least one daily walk or playtime session.

Playtime and Socialization

Your dog will have opportunities for playtime and socialization with other dogs, but this will depend on the kennel’s policies and your dog’s temperament. Some kennels offer group playtime sessions, while others may only allow one-on-one playtime. Be sure to inform the kennel staff of your dog’s socialization preferences and any behavioral issues.

Medical Care and Emergencies

Kennels should have protocols in place for medical emergencies, but it’s important to ask about their policies before leaving your dog. You should also inform the kennel staff of any pre-existing medical conditions your dog may have. If your dog requires medication, be sure to provide clear instructions and enough medication for their entire stay.

Sources: – DoggySaurus

Returning Home from the Kennel

After a fun-filled stay at the kennel, it’s time to bring your pet back home. Here are a few things to keep in mind to ensure a smooth transition:

Reintroduction to Home Environment

Returning home can be overwhelming for some dogs, so it’s important to reintroduce them to their home environment gradually. Start by confining them to one room or area, and gradually allow them to explore the rest of the house.

Post-Kennel Health Check

It’s always a good idea to give your dog a thorough health check after their stay at the kennel. Look for any signs of illness, such as coughing, sneezing, or diarrhea. If you notice any symptoms, take your dog to the vet right away.

Debriefing with Kennel Staff

Before leaving the kennel, take some time to debrief with the staff. Ask about your dog’s behavior during their stay, and if they noticed any changes in their health or behavior. This can help you address any issues at home.

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Overall, returning home from the kennel can be an exciting time for both you and your dog. By taking a few simple steps, you can ensure a smooth transition and a happy reunion with your pet.



What are the pros of boarding your dog at a kennel?

The benefits of boarding your dog at a kennel include the safety of having round-the-clock care unlike with a pet sitter, who would only be around 2-3 hours a day maximum. Your dog will not have all the stress of traveling, as being in the car or a plane can be extremely uncomfortable and stressful.

The likelihood of your dog being boarded with other dogs is extremely high, so there is a good opportunity for socialization with other dogs and play, which is important for them as well.

What are the cons of boarding your dog at a kennel?

Your dog may not get enough opportunities to empty their bladder, which can lead to urinary tract infections. Your dog could pick up diseases carried by other dogs in the kennel. Your pet could also develop kennel stress or kennel syndrome.

If your dog is prone to separation anxiety, boarding your dog in a kennel may not be a great idea, as it may cause undue stress and lead to things like kennel stress and kennel syndrome.

What is kennel stress?

Kennel stress is a condition that some dogs can develop while being boarded. Common symptoms include pacing, aggression, digging, barking, depression, and loss of appetite. It’s important to realize that with adequate preparation, you can help your dog acclimatize to being boarded and avoid kennel stress.

What is kennel syndrome?

Kennel syndrome is a phenomenon where dogs who have been left in kennels for too long actually experience periods of temporary insanity. In a study conducted at The University of Bristol’s Anthrozoology Institute, videotapes of some 30 police dogs were viewed after being placed in their kennels after work.

The dogs after a little while displayed signs of distress, including temporary mental illness, even though these dogs were having a lot of attention and handling throughout the day. So, it is incredibly important that when boarding your dog at a kennel, your pet receives enough time outside of his or her kennel.

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Is it true that my dog can get sick from being boarded in a kennel?

Yes, your dog can contract diseases while being boarded at your chosen kennel, no matter how much cleaning and sanitizing the kennel does. Diseases like Kennel cough, rabies, canine distemper, parvovirus, and canine influenza are contagious and spread by sharing food bowls, sharing other contaminated items, and direct contact with other dogs.

What are the signs of a good, safe kennel to board your dog?

A good kennel will be clean and provide adequately sized lodging for each dog that allows for their own food and water bowls and protects against wind and rain. The kennel should also look escape-proof and safe.

The staff should show a genuine interest and care about the health and well-being of your dog. The staff should be willing to answer any questions you have about their facilities as well as how they will be looking after your dog.

How much does boarding your dog at the kennel cost?

Kennel prices can vary depending on the type of boarding kennel you choose, the size of your pooch, and the length of stay. The average price of a full day’s stay in a kennel is anywhere between $30 and $80. If you are planning to leave your dog for several days at a time, the kennel may offer you a discount. The average cost is around $150 to $200 for a week.