Prepare your dog for boarding

Successful dog boarding is the result of a partnership between the owner and the kennels working together to make your dogs stay a great experience. A little preparation before their stay will help things run smoothly

If your dog has not boarded before it may be a good idea to book an initial short stay to help settle them into the kennels. This also provides you with the reassurance that the stay will be successful. At Murrayhill we find that, after just a couple of visits, it is common to find that a dog will usually accept their stay as just part of their normal way of life and run down to the kennels in anticipation of having a fun holiday.

Prior to their stay make sure that your vaccinations are current and that your dog is healthy and eating normally. We will want to see the immunisation card when they check in as part of the requirements of our boarding licence. We will return it to you after a quick check. The vaccination requirements can be a bit confusing so speak to your Vet, or Fiona, in plenty of time before your dog comes to stay if you have any questions

Let us know of any unusual habits or fears that your dog may have when you drop them off, or preferably when booking. We will do our best to accommodate this to help your pet settle and be happy during their stay. This may simply mean that your dog is allocated a quieter section of the kennels away from other dogs. If your dog is aggressive with strangers or other dogs you must pre warn the kennel. It does not mean that we will refuse to board your dog, but our staff may handle them a little more cautiously. Likewise if your dog is possessive with its food bowl . Alert the staff to any allergies or health/exercise issues.

If your dog is a worrier it may be worth dropping them at the kennel before you start to pack for your holiday. Many dogs feel anxious as the routine changes when the suitcases start to come out and the packing starts. 

When packing for your dogs stay you can bring your own food with specific instructions about feeding or let us provide food from a selection of wet or dry feeds. If your dog has a a delicate tummy it may be best to supply their regular food.

If your dog has medication bring it in the original labelled container and give the kennel detailed instructions. Make sure that you supply an extra few days medication just in case your return is delayed

Many dogs like something that reminds them of home such as a blanket or favourite toy. At Murrayhill we provide toys, bedding and a range of bed types to suit your dog, but we are happy for you to provide their own from home. Murrayhill Kennels has been given a 5 star rating as a result of our recent local authority inspection. The inspector has assessed and approved our opportunities for the enrichment activities that we provide during your dogs stay. Some people like to leave items of clothing to remind their dogs of home. When a dog is away from home they often like to chew an item as a comforter, or just for fun, so don’t expect to get the things back in the same condition! 

When leaving your dog, take them down from the car to the reception on a lead. We do ask that dogs should wear a collar with a tag containing contact details. It is a legal requirement that all dogs should now be microchipped

Currently with the Coronavirus pandemic, we ask that you put your dog into the secure pen at the side of the office and retain your lead. We can then carry out a socially distanced transfer. In addition we may quarantine, wash or disinfect items brought into the kennel

Try not to be too emotional when leaving your fur baby as they can quickly pick up on the stress of the occasion and become worried.

Don’t worry they will soon settle in the kennels and quickly relax when they pick up on the positive atmosphere from the other dogs that are staying with us. We do pay particular attention to dogs that have just come into the kennels and do what we can to make them feel at home.

You will need to fill out a form when you drop your dog off with details such as a phone number or email address where you can be contacted when you are away, together with contact details of a friend, neighbour or relative if you can’t be reached. We also need details such as food preferences, vaccinations and any medication your dog might need. If someone is to visit,or collect your dog, on your behalf you must give the kennel precise details when you drop them off. We can send the form to you to fill out before you come to the kennels.

Like your holiday, life in a boarding kennel can be very exiting and a rollercoaster of emotions for many dogs. When your dog gets to go home expect them to sleep a bit more for the first day or two. They may also be more thirsty than usual and exhibit a different level of activity. All of these are perfectly normal as your companion readjusts back to their normal way of life.

Remember: A little preparation before their stay will help things run smoothly!

In the kennel your dog will form a relationship with the staff and look forward to seeing them each day. Many dogs enjoy their stay at kennels and some owners are surprised at their reluctance to get back in the car when they are collected. 

What if my dog forgets me?

Owners often worry that if they leave their dogs in kennels, especially for an extended period of time that their dogs will forget them. Don’t worry, there is lots of evidence that dogs remember their owners even when separated for years (there are some great heartwarming YouTube videos of dogs welcoming their owners after they have been away on military service for long periods of time). Although dogs certainly dogs carry memories, emotions, fears and joys from the past, they also tend to live in the present and will enjoy their walks, games and attention whilst in the kennels. However, one of the pleasures of our job is the joy a dog exhibits when it is reunited with its owner at the end of their boarding stay.

Don’t worry about boarding your dog. Relax and have a great trip.