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I came, I saw, I- chewed.
Barked: Sat Jan 21, '12 8:30am PST 
I've never had to board our dogs. Either they went with us on vacation or we had a neighbor/relative take them while we were out of town. But at the end of March, we are planning a trip to visit my parents. I can't bring Luke because 1) my parents live in a small apartment and Luke is big, 2) we would most likely be out sightseeing most of the time, so I couldn't bring Luke around with us anyway. Not sure it would be fair to park him in a small apartment all day while we were out. The neighbors that normally watch our dog are getting a new puppy and will probably have their hands full plus they work all day (not an issue for my previous adult mellow dogs but Luke is still a puppy).

So, I'm thinking about boarding him. My thoughts were he would have playmates and more human interaction this way. Any thoughts on this? How would I go about evaluating a boarding facility? We would most likely be gone for about a week and a half. I can't decide whether boarding would be a better solution for him or not.

My last effort before boarding would be to drive him to my in-laws in West Virginia. My mother-in-law is a dog lover and stays at home so he would have company. She's done it for us before but she knew our previous dogs, they were small, and easy. I just hope Luke isn't too much of a handful for her. He's super sweet, just a very big puppy.
Jake Earned- his wings- 10.02.15

I am Murphy's- Law Embodied! <3- Me!
Barked: Sat Jan 21, '12 10:34am PST 
I've had to board jake once. I went to vegas after christmas for a few days. Luckly Jake is a Doggy DayCamp regular at Petsmart so staying over night there for a few days wasn't an overall shock for him.

I have only used petsmart to board my dog because they have 24/7 staff that stay with the dogs. They offer nice little packages including treats and snacks and daycamp. I can call to check up on him during store hours and they're honest. Since i know people who work at the petsmart jake's hotel was in. They even give me a little pawgress report when i pick him up.

I also know all the dogs at that kennel be it day camp or in the boarding facility they're up to date on shots. and if jake got hurt Banfield was right there in the same place. They also gave him an exit bath for an extra 15 bucks. And everything is climate controlled and jake was in a little room with his petbed, toys and blanket. I was allowed to bring two personal items (His toy and blanket) and then a bed and he got to use his own bowls from home and they kept him on my feeding schedule which is 11am and 11pm for food.

Thankfully jake didn't have any prereqs because he attends doggy daycamp all the time at petsmart.

My friend boards her doggy at her vets office. But they're only there when the office is open. That's why i didn't board jake at his vets because he needs someone to be with him if he has a need or is lonely.

Before i took jake to the doggy hotel he stayed at i asked other people who were picking up their pets from boarding their experiences and then looked through the glass view at the rooms jake would have stayed in and such.

I'd make sure the facility is neat, clean and doesn't carry a smell. For me the availability of staff was key because jake will start to salivate and be all panicked if he's left alone in a crate or kennel. So the rooms they offer saved jake that icky mess.
Grunt CGC

WWGD or What- Would Grunt Do?
Barked: Sat Jan 21, '12 4:53pm PST 
We board Grunt and Darcy all the time. I actually take them to the kennel for play weeks! way to go They love it. They get the exercise and dog interaction that I want them to have (we don't have a dog park around here). Plus I know they are safe, so when we go away I don't worry. We love, love, love our boarding kennel! happy dance

☮ Oakley- ☮

Leaves = My- bestfriend!!
Barked: Sat Jan 21, '12 5:18pm PST 
We use Petsmart too and have never had issues. You can bring your own food, they'll feed them when you want to, multiple potty breaks and they can't see their neighbors next to them. There is someone always there in case of an emergency and also lots of individual packages you can add on. We always add a 30 min play time where they go into a huge room with dogs their size and get to play.

When evaluating kennels, look for cleanliness, how friendly and responsive employees are, and if they do background checks on all dogs. Also check around for references and reviews. Ask around and see if anybody has some suggestions.

I came, I saw, I- chewed.
Barked: Sun Jan 22, '12 7:22am PST 
Thanks everyone! We are looking into the Petsmart and I got a recommendation from a neighbor for a local kennel. I like that one because they get to participate in the doggie daycare all day, which is a nice little perk.

But the awesome thing is that my uncle, who lives 20 minutes away from my mother, offered to take Luke while I'm visiting. Making this better? My uncle is a dog trainer and owns his own canine facility. He's been training and showing dogs for over 30 years and his last job, before opening his center, was to train bomb dogs for the police department. He can take Luke to his doggie day care all day and then take him home with him at night. How cool is that?! Luke would love that and I would know he's being well taken care of! Now I just have to figure out if Luke can take the trip. It's 12 hours without stopping but with 2 small kids and a dog, I'll break up the trip into 2 days with a hotel overnight for everyone's sanity. Luke will also have little space. I drive a Honda Element so the 2 car seats take up the entire back seat. Luke will have to lay on the floor behind the front seats. Not awful because it's a camping car so there is plenty of flat space.

I came, I saw, I- chewed.
Barked: Sun Jan 22, '12 7:57am PST 
Should probably clarify - an Element gives plenty of flat, floor space, but he'll have to stay put laying down behind the front seats. Not sure if that will work. I wish I had third row seating so he could have his own "row" in the car. thinking

Akita Pals- Always.
Barked: Wed Feb 15, '12 5:17pm PST 
Glad you solved your boarding issue. Even though the car is small I'm sure Luke can manage. I have a 2001 Hyundai Tiburon. My grandkids carseats take up pretty much the whole back seat but in an emergency,we had the dogs for an outing,son in law had quad accident and broke his neck,he was at the ER waiting to be transferred to another facility and we had to pick up the grandkids and bring them home with us.About 45 minute ride,next to no floor space,crowded but we made it work. I'm sure if Luke has the whole floor and you make stops for the kids and take an extra minute to let him stretch he'll be fine. Other than that you may be able to find a reasonable rental with more space. Best of Luck and enjoy your trip.