Learning to Live With Pets

4 Tips For Boarding A Dog That Takes Daily Medications

If you're going out of town and can't take Fido or Rover with you, a local dog boarding facility is an excellent option. Boarding facilities typically employ people who have extensive experience training, grooming, or caring for pets, giving you the peace of mind you need when you have to take a trip without your furry friend. If your dog takes any medications, however, it's important to plan ahead. Follow these tips to ensure your dog stays healthy while spending time at dog daycare.

1. Call in advance to ask about the boarding facility's medication policy.

Some facilities have no problem administering pet medications, while others give only certain types of medication or refuse to give medications at all. If you plan to board your dog for any length of time, call the local boarding facility and provide the name of the medication, the dosage, the number of times it needs to be administered each day, and the route of administration (pill, liquid, injection, etc.). If the employee informs you that the facility cannot accommodate your pet's medical needs, ask for a recommendation for another boarding service.

2. Ask if there are any fees.

Depending on the route of administration and the number of times per day your dog receives the medication, the boarding facility may charge a fee each time the medicine is administered. For example, some facilities do not charge extra to give a dog a pill that has been wrapped in a treat, but they do charge a fee to give injections or apply topical creams and ointments. You may also be charged a fee if your dog is uncooperative or aggressive when a staff member tries to administer a pill. Talk to an employee in advance so you don't get any surprises when you receive the final bill.

3. Save money by providing your own syringes, pill pockets, and other supplies.

Even if the facility does not charge a fee to give the medicine, you may have to pay extra if you do not provide your own syringes, pill pockets, or other supplies needed to ensure the medicine is administered correctly. Ask the owner or one of the employees if you can bring your own supplies to avoid extra charges.

4. Consider veterinary boarding if your dog has advanced medical needs.

It's usually no trouble for a boarding facility to give a dog one pill per day, but if your dog takes multiple medications, you might want to consider boarding the dog at a veterinary clinic instead of a traditional boarding facility. A veterinary clinic has trained staff members on hand to administer the right medications, in the right dosages, at the right times. Your vet's staff members also have the knowledge and skills needed to monitor your dog for signs of illness, quickly respond to any emergency situations, or make changes to your dog's medication regimen as needed.

It's hard to spend time away from your dog, but boarding facilities make it easier by ensuring that your dog has a safe, comfortable place to stay. If your dog takes medication, however, it's important to account for these medical needs in advance to avoid unpleasant surprises when you return from your trip.