Tips to find dog boarding in Chicago
Who we talked to
Beverley Petrunich, a former vice president of human resources, takes pride in moving her skills from humans to dogs. "The puppies are a lot happier than the people," Petrunich says with a laugh. During her corporate days, she would take her golden retriever to day care. "I thought it was a great concept and decided to open my own kennel," Petrunich says. The kennel, which has grown exponentially in its six years, now has 36 employees.
How can I make sure my pet has a happy stay?
"Look for how enthusiastic and engaged the employees are when you first call and when you bring in your dog. You want people who are crazy about dogs. Tour the kennel and look at where your dog will be sleeping. Boarding can be really stressful on a dog, physically and emotionally, if they're going to spend a lot of time in a kennel. We encourage people to bring their dog in for a couple of hours before they actually board them, especially if it's the dog's first time. That way, the dog realizes its owner will be coming back. This is especially important if the dog is a rescued dog or has separation anxiety.
Skype is a software program that allows people to make telephone calls over the Internet.
"We have a webcam and we're working on setting up Skype so people can talk to and see their dog. People love the webcam because they can see their dog whenever they want and it gives them extra security knowing their dog is well taken care of.
"Ask the kennel what kind of play areas they have and how they divide up the dogs. Also ask if how they will dogs comfortable in the summer heat. When dogs stay here they're are out of the kennels playing eight-and-a-half hours a day. Also ask how the dogs will be divided up for play. We have a high energy large dog area, and then a smaller dog area that may include some bigger, lower energy dogs. In the summer, we also have doggie pools in the outside play area.
"Boarding is $45 per night, which includes the day care. If you'd like your dog to have extra attention make sure they offer other amenities. We recommend you bring food from home, and most people do.
"Every dog needs to be current on vaccinations - rabies, kennel cough and distemper. Every dog over six months has to be spayed or neutered.
"It's a fun business. One of the fun things about it is the way the pet industry has changed. People are so passionate about their pets - they're their kids. If the dogs are happy, the people are happy."