How to Avoid Stress in Dog Kennels

By Tess Thompson

The environment in kennels is far removed from what a pet dog experiences at home. Some aspects like absence of the dog owner, different feeding and exercise timings are totally new for the dog. Add to this the unfamiliar noises and smells, temperature difference, change in diet and lack of exercise, and what results is a dog who is vulnerable to stress, abnormal behavior and anxiety.

If you have to kennel your dog for some reason, make sure that you plan in advance. Take time off to check some essentials before deciding on the kennel where you are going to leave your dog. This will go a long way in relieving stress in pets during their stay in the kennel.

  • Inquire whether the kennel staff is properly trained.
  • Whether the staff has enough time to devote to each dog.
  • Kennel design is of utmost importance. Cramped and crowded kennels are liable to cause stress.
  • Whether the kennel has separate areas for sleeping and outdoor space.
  • The number of dogs in each block has a direct impact on the noise levels that your dog will be exposed to. Unduly high noise levels are prime stressors.
  • The temperature and ventilation in the kennel should be conducive to comfortable living.
  • Whether the kennel provides special care if your dog is on medication or is old or disabled.
  • Last but not the least, whether the kennel owner allows items from home to be left with the dog to give enough time for adaptation to a new environment.

Before actually leaving your dog with the kennel, some timely actions and precautions can go a long way in ensuring a comfortable stay.

  • While leaving your dog, make sure that you have plenty of time at hand. Leave your dog at the kennel happily, and do not let your panic pass on to him.
  • Inform the kennel owner of the ailments and any particular requirements of your dog.
  • It is a good idea to train dogs for kenneling when still young. Kennel him even if you are not going out anywhere. Separation anxiety in dogs can cause aggressive behaviors. Kennel training at a young age can help in your dog to get used to living without you.
  • Leave some item of your clothing so that for the first few days the dog has a comforting scent at hand.
  • Take a couple days’ supply of your dog’s food, along with favorite toys, chews and the unwashed bed that the dog is accustomed to.

Kennel owners have a vested interest in maintaining a stress-free environment in kennels. Kennels that have an environment that is conducive to good pet care attract more business. There is every reason that the kennel owner will agree to any logical prerequisites that you insist upon.

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