If you're about to go on a weekend retreat that isn't dog-friendly, you want to make sure your dog has a good place to go. Many young urbanites and metropolitan folks don't live close enough to their parent's farm to drop the dog off there, so they'll often resort to a kennel.

Such situations lead dog owners to begin searching for the perfect dog kennel. If your dog doesn't suffer from separation anxiety and plays well with other dogs, a kennel or doggy daycare can be a great solution. For a lot of dogs, it is even a weekend getaway of their own, filled with ample stimulation, relaxation, and nurturing love and affection.
But for every good dog kennel, there are ones that aren't so good. There are ones that are like those scary boarding schools from children's movies. The sleeping conditions? Sub-par. The food? Suspicious. The overall quality of care? Downright negligent.

Many of these sub-standard doggy daycares might seem great on the surface, but behind closed doors, they could just be the last place you'd want to leave your furry friend for a few days.

Though our canine companions are regarded as having heightened instincts when it comes to certain things, sniffing out the bad dog kennels is a job left to you, the owner.

How is a dog owner supposed to differentiate between a good kennel and a bad kennel?

The team at Shuswap Pet Resort has decided to give you some tips on how to separate the great kennels from the not-so-great kennels.

First off, you should always visit any dog kennel before you drop your dog off. This seems like common knowledge, but some might feel rushed and forgo this simple bit of reconnaissance. They might hear about the facility from an advertisement or a friend, call the facility, be quickly persuaded by a friendly voice and make their decision based on that.

Going to the kennel yourself, however, will tell you everything you need to know about the staff and the facilities. When you're there, take note as to whether the staff is eager to show you around. If they're reluctant, this is a bad sign. If they aren't boasting about the boarding facility and showing you every nook and cranny, you should be wary. How do the facilities seem to you?

Is there an appropriately sized outdoor play area?

Do they staff seem knowledgeable, or inexperienced? Do they have the around-the-clock staffing or not? Some facilities do not have 24-hour human supervision, so do not make any assumptions.

Try to take note of the facility's tidiness. Does it smell worse than it should? Ask them what kind of cleaning products they use to clean up messes—are they safe for animals?

Does the kennel divide their playgroups by size and temperament, or do they let all the dogs roam freely during play-time?

Lastly, if the facility's staff does not inquire about your pet's vaccination history, that means they're also not inquiring about anyone else's. Consider this misstep a huge red flag!

How do we think we fair in these departments? We're confident that if you were to swing by Shuswap Pet Resort, we'd pass any test with flying colors. We invite you and your dog to visit our facilities any time.