When Pet Owners Go On Holidays

WHEN PET OWNERS GO ON HOLIDAYS -Kristen Holzapfel, Canberra's friendly Petsitter
Pets enhance our lives in ways too numerous to count and for many of us, we are faced with a dilemma every time we consider taking a holiday. Do we take the pooch with us? Do we leave the furbabies with somebody, or do we have somebody come to us? Because our pets have many different needs, there are many different options. Be reassured that there’s an option for every fur-family!
Take Your Dog With You!
There are several websites and Facebook pages advising of pet-friendly destinations and accommodation. Have a look at:
Family/Community Support
Pets bring communities together and, if you have a trustworthy friend or neighbour who’s willing to drop in on your dog or cat, that’s fabulous! Keep in mind however that this low-cost option does come with a few risks. Ask for police checks and references and don’t give your house-keys to anybody you do not absolutely trust! Also, be aware that if you pay your “trustworthy friend or neighbour” for this service, there is a greater incentive for them to do the job and do it well!
Boarding Kennels
Boarding kennels are great for well-socialised doggo’s, but make sure they’re up to date on their vaccinations first! 
Some services are especially “homey” and, for pooches accustomed to spending their days in a warm and soft home, this is ideal.
Many kennels are located on well-worn travel routes to the snow, the coast and Sydney/Melbourne which makes it handy for drop off/pick up. Have a look at:
Out of Home Petsitters (eg, pets cared for in the Petsitter’s home)
This is a slightly cheaper option for pets who still want to stay in a more “homey” atmosphere. Remember to ask how many pets your Petsitter will be caring for at any given time and how long they will be spending with the animals during the day. It’s also worth asking your Petsitter what sort of insurance and backup support he/she has access to. Have a look at:
Overnight In-Home Petsitters (eg, pets cared for overnight in the pets’ home)
This option is perfect for pupper’s who are too shy or sensitive to the busy atmosphere of kennels. It also provides the added security of someone bringing in your mail/putting out the bins/watering your plants. This service is ideal for older pets, pets with disabilities/complex needs or pets with separation anxiety. It’s also for pets who are used to sleeping on the bed with you, or need to go out to the toilet in the middle of the night! Have a look at:
www.canberrapetsitter.com.au (all Canberra & Queanbeyan)
www.timeoutpetcare.com (Canberra Northside and Hall/Murrumbateman/Yass
Drop-In Home Petsitters (eg, drop in visits provided to the pets’ home)
There are several small, local businesses providing drop-in and Dog walking services. This is a convenient option, especially for young and/or active breed dogs. Have a look at:
www.dogsontherun.com.au (Northside only)
Hiring a Housesitters is a great option if you’re going away for a longer period (2-3 months or more). A Housesitters can live in your home in lieu of rent, but this is something to be negotiated on a case-by-case basis. A Housesitter is especially useful if you have a large garden, pool or property requiring ongoing maintenance. Have a look at:
Book Early!
Regardless of which option is best for you and your pets, don’t forget to book early and expect to pay public holiday surcharges during those popular holiday periods! Many services are booked out several months before all public holidays (especially Christmas and Easter) so get in as early as you can.
Kristen Holzapfel
Canberra's Friendly Petsitter