Do Kennels Accept Dogs With Medical Conditions?
Professional boarding kennels have a duty to care for all their pet residents, and a good kennel should ensure that all its dogs are safe and well cared for during their visits. Before you can board your dog, the kennel should check if it has current vaccinations and is in good health. Kennels may accept your dog if it has a long-term medical condition or even a short-term illness, but they may not be able to take in boarders whose medical conditions may affect the health of other dogs.
Contagious Disease Rules
Boarding kennels should follow state health regulations. Typically, regulations state that dogs must have a minimum level of vaccination and must not present a health risk to other animals. For example, the regulations for boarding in New South Wales state that kennels should not accept a dog that has been diagnosed as having a contagious disease. Kennels may also refuse to board your pet if a member of staff suspects that it has a contagious disease. So, if your dog has kennel cough, for example, you're unlikely to find a kennel that will accept it as the risk of it infecting other dogs is too high.
Other Medical Conditions
Boarding kennels are often happy to board a dog that has a non-contagious medical condition; many have experience of managing common illnesses, such as diabetes and arthritis. If your dog has a condition or needs medication, talk to the kennel's manager before you book a stay to check that the kennel will accept your dog and can provide appropriate levels of care. For example, ask the following questions:
- Have staff cared for dogs with the same condition in the past?
- Do staff have experience of giving medications to dogs?
- How do staff get dogs to take their medicine?
- Does the facility have any features to help manage your dog's condition, such as heated floors or heat pads for dogs with arthritis?
Before you book your dog in, you should also check what the kennel expects from you. Kennels typically require owners to provide an adequate supply of pet medications for the boarding stay and to give clear instructions on how and when they should be administered. You may also have to pay additional fees if staff have to give medicine to your pet.
Tip: If your pet seems a little off-colour before its stay in kennels, you may want to have your vet check that it is okay. If your dog looks ill when you arrive, and you don't know what is wrong with it, kennels may refuse to board it.