3 Ways to Take Care of Your Pets While You’re on Vacation

This cat wishes you weren't going on vacation

This cat wishes you weren't going on vacation

It’s hot, sticky, and humid outside, so if you’re dreaming of an ocean, lake, or poolside vacation right now, I sympathize. But as you book travel plans, pack your suitcases, and gather up your beach reads, don’t forget your pets. When owners travel, it can confusing for pets who don’t understand where owners are going and when they’ll return. If bringing your pet along on vacation isn’t feasible — or just isn’t right for you, your pet, or your vacation — here are some options for how to keep pets comfortable during your vacation.

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Hire a Pet Sitter

A pet sitter can stop by on a daily basis to give your cat fresh food and water, clean the litter box, and spend some time socializing and playing with the cat. For dogs, a bit more is required from a pet sitter: several walks a day, as well as food and interaction, will be necessary.

Some pet sitters will even stay in your home while you’re away, which will insure that your pet gets the necessary play, stimulation, and social time. Pet sitters can be hired professionally or be a neighborhood acquaintance; whoever it is, make sure to hire a pet sitter that you feel comfortable entrusting with your pet and the keys to your home.

RELATED STORY: Questions to Ask a Professional Pet Sitter

Board Your Cat or Dog

For some pets, being boarded is a reasonable option; for others, it may feel like a punishment. If your pet hates being boarded, and finds the small space and group environment detestable, this option is not right for you. But if your pet tolerates being boarded, give this a try.

Do make sure to check the facility first, and make sure the accommodations are clean and pleasant. If you’re looking for a place to board your pet, try asking your vet first — many veterinarian’s offices board pets, and all vets should be able to recommend a reputable kennel.

RELATED STORY: What’s the Cost to Kennel a Dog?

Leave Your Cat or Dog With a Friend

Before using this option, think about how demanding your pets are. Will this be too much of a burden on your friend? If you have a puppy or a notoriously challenging cat or dog, this might not be the best option. And, if your friend has a cat or dog, this option might not work, since your vacation-time may result in a week of your friend supervising territorial disputes.

Wherever you decide to leave your pet, make sure the people responsible have your contact information, the vet’s contact information, and a general sense of your pet’s disposition and habits. A note with feeding instructions, schedule information, and play guidelines will be immensely helpful as well.

PetPlus offers a budget-friendly way board your pets while you’re out of town. Find out if PetPlus is right for you, and get more information on the members-only benefits, which include discounts on food and vet visits, as well as boarding discounts.

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