The world of pet boarding is changing. New businesses such as DogVacay, Sleepover Rover, Wagit, and Rover are offering services comparable to the Air BnB model – but for your pets. This means that instead of “traditional boarding,” you would find an individual on one of these websites, and leave your dog or cat with them during your time away from home. You can search for individual boarders based on distance, price, availability, etc., and can e-mail and meet up with them beforehand to decide if you make a good match.
As with everything, there are pros and cons to both types of boarding options. And while we understand that everyone’s needs are different, we wanted to take this opportunity to share a few of our top reasons for choosing traditional boarding over homestays.
- Trained and experienced staff. Businesses that offer traditional boarding also offer staff members who are well-trained and experienced in pet care. They are prepared to deal with emergencies, know how to best handle individual pets’ needs, and – most importantly – share a love for animals.
- Lots of socialization. When you were growing up, what was your favorite part of having a sleepover? Playing with all your buddies during the day, of course! With boarding, your pets have the opportunity to spend the day making new friends and learning how to socialize – especially important for younger animals.
- Pick up services. Some businesses (such as Woof in Boots!) offer a valet pick-up service – for a small fee, they will come pick up your dog or cat from your home, giving you one less thing to check off your to-do list. Doesn’t that make it a little easier to start enjoying your trip?
- Insurance / Licensing. One of the most important things about dealing with a business over an individual? Regulations. Companies that offer traditional boarding are insured by law, and they are inspected and licensed by the Department of Agriculture.
- Cameras to monitor activity. Businesses that offer traditional boarding want you to feel secure. You can check in on Fido from anywhere, anytime!
- Price. In many cases, boarding is not much more expensive than the suggested prices on homestay websites. Woof in Boots offers new customer deals, multiple pet deals, returning customer deals, AND that’s with a starting price of only $38. Most of the individuals offering homestay services ask for between $30 and $50.
- Peace of mind. Traditional boarding was created to provide a service for people with pets. These companies want your dog or cat to be well-fed, socialized, and essentially, come away feeling as if they’ve been on vacation, too! These elements add up to ensure you feel happy, safe, and comfortable with leaving your pet for a few days.
In the end, each potential customer researching traditional boarding versus a homestay is looking for something that will fit their own individual needs… but we’re sure you can guess which way we’re leaning! Woof!