What is Dog Boarding?

what is pet boarding

No matter how much you care and adore your furry companion, there comes a time when you’ll need to leave them either due to emergencies or vacation. During times like this, dog boarding facilities come to save the day!

This service allows pet owners to have their furry friends stay overnight at a specialized facility that caters to the needs of dogs. The environment is supervised and secure, ensuring that your dog is in good hands while you’re away. In addition to providing food and exercise, some facilities even offer grooming services to keep your pup looking and feeling their best.

In this article, we’ll discuss how dog boarding works and what to consider when using dog boarding facilities.

Pet Boarding vs Kenneling: What’s the Difference?

The main difference between pet boarding and kenneling is that pet boarding offers a more comprehensive and comfortable experience for pets. Pet boarding facilities provide a cozy environment, social interaction, and personalized care, while kenneling often focuses solely on basic accommodations without as much attention to comfort and interaction. Pet boarding is like a vacation for your pet, with more amenities and attention, while kenneling is more basic temporary housing.

Types of Dog Boarding Facilities

There are different types of dog boarding facilities to choose from, each offering specific features to suit your pet’s needs:

Traditional Kennels

These are basic facilities where dogs are kept in individual kennels for most of the day. They receive food, water, and some outdoor time, but social interaction may be limited.

Pet Hotels

Pet hotels provide a more luxurious experience, with private suites, comfortable bedding, and often additional services like grooming and playtime.

Home Boarding

Your dog will stay with a professional pet sitter in their own home with home boarding. This offers a home-like environment and more personalized attention.

Doggy Daycare

While not exactly boarding, doggy daycare centers allow your dog to stay during the day, providing playtime, exercise, and socialization.

Luxury Resorts

These high-end facilities offer lavish accommodations, spa treatments, and activities like swimming or hiking. They cater to pet owners looking for a premium experience.

Veterinary Boarding

If your dog has medical needs, veterinary clinics often provide boarding services with trained staff to manage health issues.

When choosing a facility, consider your dog’s personality, needs, preferences, and the level of care and interaction you want them to receive. It’s important to visit the facility beforehand, ask questions, and ensure it meets your expectations for your furry friend’s comfort and safety.

What to Expect During a Dog Boarding Stay

dog boarding

When your dog goes for a boarding stay, here’s what you can expect:

  1. Check-In: You’ll bring your dog to the facility and complete any necessary paperwork. Ensure to provide information about their diet, medication, and special instructions.
  2. Settling In: The staff will help your dog settle into their designated space. They might show you around the facility and explain the daily routine.
  3. Accommodation: Your dog will have a designated space to sleep and relax. Some places offer private rooms, while others have kennels or open areas.
  4. Feeding: The facility will feed your dog according to your instructions. If your dog has specific dietary needs, ensure you communicate them clearly.
  5. Exercise and Playtime: Most facilities have scheduled playtimes and exercise sessions. Dogs can socialize, play fetch, or enjoy outdoor time.
  6. Interaction: Staff members interact with the dogs regularly. They provide companionship, belly rubs, and engage in activities to entertain the dogs.
  7. Grooming: Some facilities offer grooming services, so your dog might receive a bath, nail trim, or brush during their stay.
  8. Health Monitoring: The staff keeps an eye on your dog’s health. If your dog has a medical issue, they’ll attend to it and contact you if needed.
  9. Routine: Boarding facilities aim to maintain a routine similar to what your dog is used to at home. This includes feeding times, playtimes, and rest periods.
  10. Safety: The facility ensures a safe environment. Dogs are supervised, and measures are taken to prevent conflicts or accidents.
  11. Comfort: Many places provide cozy bedding and toys to make your dog feel more at home.
  12. Daily Updates: Some facilities offer daily updates via text or email, including photos of your dog enjoying their stay.
  13. Check-Out: When you return, you’ll find a happy and well-cared-for dog. Pay any remaining fees, and collect your furry friend.

What are the Benefits of Dog Boarding?

Dog boarding facilities offer many advantages that make the experience enjoyable and comforting; let’s take a look at some specific benefits:

Socialization Opportunities for Dogs

Dog boarding allows your pet to mingle with other dogs in a controlled and supervised setting. Interaction with fellow furry friends helps enhance their social skills, build confidence, and reduce anxiety when around new dogs. Regular playtime and group activities promote a healthy sense of companionship and make your dog more comfortable in different social situations.

Professional Care and Attention

One of the key benefits of dog boarding is the high level of care your pet receives from trained professionals. Experienced staff ensures your dog’s daily needs are met, including feeding, exercise, and medication if required. This professional attention is particularly valuable for dogs with specific medical needs, ensuring they are looked after with expertise and care.

Safe and Secure Environment

Boarding facilities are designed to provide a secure environment for dogs. They often have controlled access points, sturdy enclosures, and experienced staff to prevent any potential hazards. This secure setting protects your dog from escaping or getting lost and minimizes the risks associated with exposure to unfamiliar environments.

Peace of Mind for Pet Owners

When pet owners leave their furry companions at a trustworthy boarding facility, they can relax knowing that their dog is in good hands and receiving proper care. Regular updates and photos from the facility can help ease any concerns about their well-being while you’re away.

Dog boarding provides a comprehensive experience that enhances your pet’s social skills, safety, and overall peace of mind. It’s a mutually beneficial arrangement that allows your furry friend to thrive and enjoy their time while you’re temporarily apart.

Choosing the Right Dog Boarding Facility

As you prepare for your dog’s boarding experience, selecting the right facility is essential to ensure their comfort. Exploring various aspects such as research, preparation, and communication can help you make an informed decision that leads to a positive boarding stay for your furry companion.

Here’s a comprehensive guide on choosing the right dog boarding facility:

Researching and Visiting Potential Facilities

Start by researching boarding facilities or professional pet sitters in your area. Check online reviews to see if they’re certified to care for pets, and ask for recommendations from friends, family, or your veterinarian. Once you’ve narrowed down your options, schedule visits to the facilities. This allows you to see the environment, cleanliness, and how staff interact with dogs.

Questions to Ask When Choosing a Facility

During your visits, ask important questions like:

  • What’s the staff-to-dog ratio?
  • How do they handle emergencies or health issues?
  • Are dogs separated by size, age, or temperament during playtime?
  • What’s the daily routine like for dogs?
  • Can you bring your dog’s food, toys, or bedding?
  • Do they require vaccinations and health records?
  • What’s their policy on contacting you in case of updates or emergencies?

Preparing Your Dog for a Boarding Stay

Leaving your dog with friends or family for short periods can help your dog get used to boarding and can also reduce separation anxiety. Also, ensure your dog is up-to-date on vaccinations, flea prevention, and other health requirements.

Providing Necessary Information to the Facility

Give the boarding facility detailed information about your dog’s routine, dietary needs, allergies, medications, and emergency contact information. The more they know, the better they can provide tailored care.

Packing Essentials for Your Dog’s Stay

Pack your dog’s essentials:

  • Enough food for their stay
  • Medications, if needed
  • Their regular leash, collar, and tags
  • Bedding or a familiar blanket to provide comfort
  • A favorite toy for entertainment
  • Any specific care items, like grooming tools
  • Clear feeding instructions and any special routines

The right boarding facility should make both you and your dog feel comfortable. Researching, visiting, and asking questions ensures that your furry friend will have a safe, enjoyable, and stress-free stay while you’re away.

Tips for Easing Your Dog’s Anxiety During Their Stay

pet boarding

Here are some tips for easing your dog’s anxiety during their boarding stay for maximum comfort:

Familiarize Them with the Facility

Visit the boarding facility beforehand with your dog. Let them explore the environment, meet the staff, and get comfortable with the surroundings. This familiarity can help reduce their anxiety when it’s time to stay.

Bring Familiar Items

Pack your dog’s favorite toy, blanket, or bedding that carries its scent and an unwashed T-shirt that carries your scent. Having familiar scents around can provide a sense of security and comfort in the new environment.

Maintain Routine

Try to maintain a similar routine to what your dog is used to at home. Inform the facility about your dog’s feeding times, walks, and other routines so they can follow them as closely as possible.

Stay Calm and Positive

When dropping off your dog, stay positive. Dogs are sensitive to your emotions, so showing confidence and reassurance can help them feel less anxious.

Provide Contact Information

Leave multiple contact numbers where you can be reached during the boarding stay. Knowing they can reach you in case of emergencies can be comforting to both you and your dog.

Avoid Lengthy Goodbyes

While it’s natural to want to say a heartfelt goodbye, long and emotional farewells can sometimes increase your dog’s anxiety. Keep the farewell brief and cheerful.

Communicate with the Staff

Share any specific concerns or behaviors your dog exhibits when anxious. The staff can offer extra attention and care to help ease their worries.

Pick-up Routine

When you return to pick up your dog, maintain a calm demeanor. This helps your dog know that you’re back and everything is okay.

It is important to note that each dog is unique, and what works to ease their anxiety may vary. The key is to provide a mix of familiar items, routines, and positive energy to help them feel as comfortable as possible during their boarding stay.

Your Dog Deserves the Best Boarding Service in Magnolia, Texas

Ensuring your dog’s comfort, safety, and happiness during their boarding stay is a top priority.

Look no further if you’re looking for a reliable dog boarding facility in Magnolia, Texas. Forest Shadows Pet Resort offers a safe and secure environment, professional care, and plenty of socialization opportunities for your furry friend.

Give your dog the best boarding experience by choosing us for their stay. Contact us today to learn more about how we can provide the comfort and care your dog deserves.


Q: What is the point of pet boarding?

A: Pet boarding provides a safe and supervised environment for pets when their owners are away. It ensures their well-being and offers social interaction, exercise, and personalized care.

Q: Is boarding good for your dog?

A: Yes, boarding can be good for dogs. It offers a change of environment, socialization opportunities, and professional care. However, choosing the right facility and preparing your dog to minimize anxiety is important.

Q: What are the cons of pet boarding?

A: Some cons of pet boarding include potential stress or anxiety for dogs due to the unfamiliar environment and separation from owners. Choosing the wrong facility could result in inadequate care or insufficient attention.

Q: Do dogs get scared when boarding?

A: Some dogs might experience fear or anxiety when boarding due to the new surroundings, separation from their owners, and the presence of unfamiliar dogs. Proper preparation and choosing a reputable facility can help alleviate these concerns.

Q: How stressful is boarding a dog?

A: Boarding can be stressful for dogs, especially if they are not accustomed to new environments or being separated from their owners. However, many dogs adapt well with proper preparation, familiar items, and interaction with staff and other dogs.

About kimberly

Kimberley, the compassionate force behind Forest Shadows Pet Resort, combines her love for animals and years of experience to create a haven for cherished pets. With a warm and welcoming approach, she understands the concerns and needs of pet owners, building a sense of community. Bringing her background in education and passion for animals together, Kimberley ensures that pets receive the utmost care, attention, and affection at Forest Shadows Pet Resort. With her unwavering commitment to their well-being, Kimberley invites you to experience the love and care that make the resort a second home for your furry family members.