It won’t be long before spring and summer are here and with it, those vacations, and short trips where you can’t take your best canine friend. But never fear, because with the following guidelines, you can select the best possible dog kennel facility where the needs of dogs will be met with love and care.

A Business License Is Not The Same As County Approved Kennel

In order to kennel dogs overnight, a facility needs to have a kennel license approved in their county by Animal Control. While one may have a business license to operate, they may not be approved by their county to do so. This is important to research.

There are many types of boarding kennels out there – some great, and some not-so-great.

Performance K9 Training & Boarding has achieved the approval of Animal Control in San Diego County.

This means that every year, an officer for Animal Control tours the kennel to ensure it is abiding by all safety guidelines for the health and wellness of pets. Their comprehensive checklist includes assurance of the following:

  • Complete filing system of vaccination records for canine guests
  • Proper storage of dog food
  • Clean kennels
  • Fresh water provided for all dogs
  • Dog suites and play yards are maintained for safety and cleanliness
  • Review of all cleaning and sanitation guidelines

Performance K9 Training & Boarding has been commended by Animal Control as how a kennel facility should be operated and maintained.

As you search for the right kennel for your pet, there are definite things to look for to ensure your dog is cared for as if they were home. Do be aware that finding this perfect place may be a bit stressful because it requires some footwork. 

To help alleviate that stress, we’ve compiled a list of things to look for to help you make your decision. Visiting prospective facilities is an absolute must, so your eyes, ears, and nose can get the true scoop about each kennel. 

Kennel Visit Checklist 

  1. Size and Staffing: 

A key to the overall functioning of a kennel lies in the number of dogs compared to the number of staff on-hand at all times. Additionally, it’s important to find out how much experience these kennel attendants have in the dog world. 

For each facility you visit, ask for a meeting with the manager or director, and ask these questions: 

  • How many dogs are there daily? 
  • How many dogs come for daycare vs. kennel-stays?
  • Is there a trainer on staff? 
  • Is their a resident vet and what is the protocol if a dog needs medical care? 
  • What kind of training does staff undergo?
  1. Safety and Security

The following safety measures are essential for any kennel. Do move on if you visit a kennel that does not have these in place. 

  • Look around to see if there are signs to guide staff and visitors.
  • Are fencing, walls, and gates sufficient to keep even the largest dogs from being able to escape? 
  • What is the procedure for removing dogs from the facility should there be a fire or other emergency?
  • Are security cameras installed outside? 
  • Is staff or a guard onsite at night?
  1. Sanitation and Hygiene

Your overall impression of a kennel should be that it is sanitary and tidy. It should not have an overwhelming odor of feces or urine. If there is a heavy smell, the dogs are probably not being let out as often as they should. Overall, the kennels should look clean. Here are some questions to ask on your visit.

  • How often and when are the kennels cleaned?
  • What cleaning products are used?
  • Between dogs, are the kennels sanitized to prevent the spread of viruses or bacteria from the kennel’s previous resident? 
  • Are the dogs bathed if they become soiled with urine or feces?
  1. The Little Things That Add Up

Have you ever gone to some place and have a gut feeling that something isn’t right? Where you just don’t feel comfortable? Your gut is just as important in evaluating a boarding kennel for your pet. If something about the place nags at you, then it’s not the right place for your dog. If you want to put more definition on your discomfort, consider:

  • Are the kennels temperature regulated?
  • Do dogs go out either during excessively hot or cold temperatures?
  • Are dogs constantly barking? 
  • Do the dogs look happy?
  • Would they consider accepting your dog for a “trial,” overnight stay?
  1. Staff

As you can well imagine, kennel staff is key. When you speak with the kennel director, you will learn about the staff education, background, and training. However, even more important, during your visit, pay close attention to the staff. Do they look like they do or don’t enjoy their jobs? Are they friendly and smiling? Do they answer any questions you have graciously? Or do they ignore and not acknowledge you? See if you can find out anything about the overall management style and the staff response to it. Happy employees make for happy dogs.

  1. Playtime and Exercise

Do inquire about playtime, potty breaks, and outside stretch time. Dogs also need human interaction. If the kennel has a playgroup, you need to find out how it is handled, including

  • What are the guidelines for playtime?
  • Do they offer a playgroup? If so, how are dogs evaluated?
  • Will dogs be walked individually upon request?
  1. Vaccinations

Kennels in good standing and Animal Control approved are strict about what vaccinations your dog must have before they are accepted. Find out what the requirements are and be sure your dog has all the necessary vaccinations.

  1. Performance K9 Training & Boarding 

Performance K9 Training & Boarding offers pets the very best kennel care in a beautiful country setting in San Diego North County. Your pet will be treated to our fully fenced, one-acre property that offers plenty of outdoor play areas, and outdoor/indoor kennels that provide your pet with individual ventilation, disinfection technology, and air conditioning.  We also provide each dog with a Kuranda dog bed or plush blankets in suites which afford a solid night’s sleep. We also have on-site staff to ensure a safe and secure environment for your dog.  

We know that making sure your pet is properly cared for and comfortable in his home-away-from-home is essential for his health and happiness and your peace of mind. Performance K9 Training and Boarding ensures both the best possible care for your pet as well as your peace of mind while he’s in our care. To learn more visit our reviews page!