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Holiday care for your dog. Here, your dog is well cared for during your holiday

Finally the holidays have arrived – but who will take care of my dog? Your four-legged friend can’t always come along. Holiday care for your dog is the solution. How to find a perfect kennel. Not everyone has the option of leaving their pet with friends or relatives when they go on holiday. Thankfully, there are other options for holiday care for dogs. These range from dog sitters to kennels, so that every owner can find the right dog care. It doesn’t matter whether you find something through acquaintances, the pin-board at the supermarket, in animal-sitter listings or through ads on the internet – the most important thing is that you check the provider to weed out black sheep. Read our tips for holiday care to help make it easier to choose the right carer or kennel.


Dog care: care from a private person or at the kennels?

When choosing optimal care, various questions are essential: what options are there? How can I get my dog used to the holiday care? What does holiday care cost? Not only the price is important, but also the quality of the care. Ultimately, your dog should be as happy during the holidays as you are. A species-appropriate dog-care facility, whether commercial or private, is clean, spacious, free of hazards and offers experienced holiday care.


Private home care differs from commercial kennels in that the dog is cared for in the living space of private holiday carers.


Kennels, on the other hand, typically distribute multiple dogs into specially-built dog accommodation. These might be room-like huts on a fenced-in property or individual rooms in a house.


Important: Take a critical view of the potential holiday carer for your dog. Pay attention to hygiene. If you see dog poo in the run, smell urine in the dog houses or discover dirty water bowls, then you should not inflict this accommodation on your dog. Dirty dog accommodation means a significant risk of contagion for your already stressed dog which you should not take lightly. Most dogs do not take separation from their owners lightly and need attentive and affectionate care in order to feel comfortable.


Dog toys lying about indicates unprofessional handling of four-legged guests. Make sure that there is enough space in the accommodation for the dog itself. Where is your dog’s sleeping place? Is there enough distance from the next dog? How many animals are in the group? In order to find the right care for your dog, you should also find out about how your dog will be handled individually: are regular walks on the itinerary or is there only a run? Is playtime with other dogs planned or are the dogs left to their own devices?

How to identify a serious provider of good dog care

Are you looking for professional, affectionate holiday care for your dog? Qualifications are good, but you shouldn’t overestimate the value of this evidence. With private holiday care for your dog, where the animal is included in the family, the “chemistry” between your dog and the “foster parents” is the first thing (after the cleanliness of the living space) that should work. Comprehensive qualifications are generally not possible, and also not necessary.


On the other hand, things can look very different when holiday dog care is offered by commercially operated kennels. If dogs are kept in groups, the operators should be appropriately trained and be able to document their qualifications. Facilities of this type must also have an operating permit pursuant to §11 of the Animal Protection Law.


A good dog care provider will inform you in advance about:

  • Vaccinations
  • Insurance
  • Health status
  • Eating habits
  • Social tolerances
  • Your dog’s preferences

Private carers should guarantee that your dog will be integrated into the foster family. It is optimal if the carers are able to get to know your dog in advance and get used to his quirks. The difference between a professional dog sitter and private dog care is the special experience they bring with them – this also includes handling “problem dogs” and animals with disabilities. Holiday care for a matter of days in an animal shelter can also be an option. In every case, the important thing is that the holiday accommodation provides pedagogically valuable and species-appropriate activities for your dog.


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The pros of dog kennels at a glance:

  • An on-site dog playground or field with trees and lawn
  • Professional dog activities: games, agility, basic obedience training
  • Cuddle sessions to make the separation from the dog’s family easier

Where can you find holiday care or home care for your dog?

In big cities such as Berlin, Hamburg or Munich there are numerous providers of holiday dog care that you can find quickly on the internet. It is also a good idea to take advantage of word-of-mouth, which typically works well: find out who has a recommendation for a good holiday carer. Ask people you know to find out about private care for pets for holidays. The best references for a dog sitter are other satisfied dog owners. So speak to your obedience school, your breeder or your vet about recommendations.


Another source for dog care during the holidays is the association Deutscher Haushüter Agenturen e.V. They maintain a list of reliable dog sitters who will care for your dog in its familiar environment, or take it in during your holiday. The platform betreut.de offers animal care in your neighbourhood.


What is important is that you ideally arrange good holiday care well in advance – that way you and your dog are optimally prepared and you can enjoy your break with a clear conscience.


The best references for a dog sitter are other satisfied dog owners. So speak to your obedience school, your breeder or your vet about recommendations. In the checklist, we have summarised again the ways you can identify good kennels.

What does a dog need when it is in holiday care?

After a thorough check, have you found the right care for your dog? Then you can pack your dog’s bags.

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These things should definitely not be forgotten:

  • your dog’s usual bed and blanket
  • Toys
  • Food and snacks
  • Transport box
  • Copies of the most important documents: pet passport, vaccination certifications
  • Important information, such as contact information for the vet, your own contact information during your holiday
  • if necessary, special feed and medications, incl. a list of information about your dog and any special needs to be considered

Ideally, you should find out directly from your dog’s carer what equipment might be necessary. Good contacts also have tips on getting your dog used to holiday care and how to manage the separation as well and as easily as possible.


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