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Patapsco Valley View

Volume 9

November 2012

Home for the Holidays!

So, it’s that time of the year again. Thanksgiving w Kinkaid_2.jpg

Everyone is getting ready to head off….dashing through the snow to Grandma’s house we go…

But what about ole Black Dog, or Princess Kayleigh the Diva Kitty? Are they going too?

If you are a very lucky person, Grandma lives around the corner and you don’t have this dilemma. You can ‘pop’ over for Thanksgiving dinner, with pumpkin pie, and still get home in time to take your dog out for his nightly constitutional.

However, with many families scattered across the country, most people have to make some decisions related to the holidays regarding their pets.

If Grandma loves your boston terrier like the four legged grandchild that she is, you may be able to pack Tootsie up in the car and take her along for a visit.

But, if your siberian might consider Grandma’s persian as holiday dinner, or if Grandma’s fourteen pound tabby wants to make abstract art out of your chihuahua, you have to consider the alternatives.

The first consideration may be a neighbor who is willing to drop in on your pet to feed and walk him while you are gone. But remember, neighbors take holidays too, so check out alternatives.

If you are looking for kennels, you want to plan ahead. Many kennels are booked months in advance for the period of November -December holidays.

If your dog is calm and enjoys the interaction of other dogs, he may do very well at a boarding kennel. You want to make sure that you find a reputable kennel and, if possible, see if you can do a walk through with a member of the staff before you make your decision.

The most important thing about kenneling is to make sure that your pet is protected from diseases. So be sure his vaccinations are up to date. Bordatella is a bacteria that causes a heavy cough and possibly pneumonia. It is highly contagious and therefore a big threat in kennel and daycare facilities. For best protection your pet should be vaccinated against bordatella every six months

If you have a nervous dog, or a delicate cat, a boarding kennel may not be in your pet’s best interest. In that case a ‘pet sitter’ would probably be a good alternative choice.

Pet sitters normally come to your home once, twice, or even in some cases, three times a day to feed, walk, or medicate your pet. They tend to charge by the visit, and their prices are often similar to that of a boarding kennel.

The benefit of a pet sitter is that your pet is able to stay in her natural environment which helps reduce the stress of having ’the folks’ away. A daily visitor can encourage eating, and can monitor for any sign of potential illness.

Cats normally only need a daily visit to check the litter pans, and put out fresh food. Dogs tend to need two to three visits so that they can be walked outside.

Pet sitters do ‘book up’ during the holidays too, so make sure if you’re going to need their services, you contact them in advance. A good pet sitter, or kennel, can be worth her weight in gold.

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