Greyt Inspirations Life

A little about our life, our business and our pets.

Bath day and the boarding kennel

It’s bath day here.  Not for me!  I try to keep up with my personal hygiene on a daily basis.  But the dogs don’t get bathed and groomed quite as often as I do.  When I’m showing a dog they may get bathed weekly and I put them up on the grooming table every week to use the clippers, scissors, and do their nails and so on.  But the rest of the time I usually let them go about a month between baths.  They can start looking pretty shaggy between grooming sessions.  Billie, especially, tends to get a mop of curly hair on her head.  She looks like she has a perm.




Courtesy flickr

Courtesy flickr

I usually try to space the baths and grooming sessions out so I don’t end up doing them all on one day because, honestly, bathing four or five big dogs in a bathtub is a little backbreaking.  If you bathe your own dog you probably know what it’s like.  Some dogs are better in the bath than others.  Mine are good.  I start playing with them in the bath when they are just babies, letting them splash in an inch of water.  Sometimes I put on a bathing suit and I get in the tub to play with them as puppies.  So, none of them are afraid of baths.  They don’t freeze up or shake the way some dogs do because we start with it when they’re so young.  Most of my dogs hop in and out of the tub even when it’s empty to play in there and I have a couple who like to sleep in the tub.



They like getting groomed, too.  That’s probably because they get treats for every single thing we do.  Get on the table, get a treat.  Use the clippers, get a treat.  Do their nails, get a treat.  Get off the table, LOTS of treats.  It’s taken me a long time to work out all these little systems so the dogs are happy to cooperate.


The reason I have to give everybody baths today is because everybody has to go get their vaccinations later this week and I like for them to look nice when they go to see the vet.  (Of course, it’s been kind of muddy and wet here the last couple of weeks, too, so they really do need baths.)  And, the reason why everybody has to get their vaccinations updated this week is because they’re all going to the boarding kennel this weekend.  I’m going on a little vacation and around here the boarding kennel is the best option for them while I’m gone.


In the past I’ve agonized about leaving them at the kennel when I had to go somewhere.  I’ve looked for good pet sitters.  I’ve considered asking one of my neighbors to take care of them.  But the best option in our case has turned out to be the boarding kennel near my house.  After checking into the very few pet sitters in the area, I haven’t been able to find one that I had confidence in.  I think they provide a wonderful service and I wish I could find one locally that felt “right” to me.  But after speaking to several of them on the phone none of them sounded like someone I wanted to trust my dogs to while I was away.  I like my neighbors a lot but several of them are elderly, so I wouldn’t ask to impose on them.  One family has teenage kids who like my dogs, but I just felt like it might be asking too much to put all that responsibility on a neighbor.  That left a couple of good boarding kennels near my home.  I know the owners personally.  I buy dog food from one of them and the other one breeds Pugs.  I know she takes wonderful care of her dogs.  I’ve personally visited both kennels.  I know the conditions and how the dogs are kept.  They invite me to call every day when I’m away (which I do).  The last time I returned home from a trip two of my girls were sitting up front in the office “helping out.”  My dogs have always been in great shape when I’ve picked them up and they seem very fond of the kennel people.  And the kennel people know each dog by name and can tell me all kinds of details about them.  I like that.


If you are ever thinking about choosing a boarding kennel for your dog (and I know it’s hard) you should visit the kennel and meet the people who would be taking care of your dog.  Do you like them?  Do they seem trustworthy?  Is the place clean?  Well-ventilated?  Do the dogs seem well-cared for?  Ask how the dogs are kenneled.  Boarding kennels typically place two dogs in each kennel run so they have to make sure that the two dogs are compatible.  You can ask which dog would be kenneled with your dog if they know.  Ask what food the kennel feeds.  It’s perfectly acceptable to bring your dog’s own food from home for his stay.  You can also bring a favorite toy.


I’ve never had any problems with boarding a dog at a boarding kennel.  My family used to board our dogs when we went on vacations when I was a kid, too.  But, like anything else, there are good ones and bad ones so you should carefully check out any place you plan to leave your dog.


December 10, 2008 - Posted by | General

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