What You Should Know About Boarding


Boarding Facilities and Kennels have many similarities to a children’s day care. Just like any place where a group of children are, the virus of the day is likely to be passed around whether it be a cold or a stomach flu. A Kennel environment is very much the same.

Kennel Cough also known as Bordatella is the most common concern for pet owners and kennel operators. Unlike other viruses that are controlled by vaccinations, Kennel Cough is not. Kennel Cough is very much like the flu – countless strains are out there and the vaccine can only control some. Some Vets vaccinate yearly, others every six months. Some studies show that immunity levels don’t stay high enough in some dogs to protect them for a full year. Shadowbrook prefers dogs to be vaccinated every sizx months but will adhere to the protocol of your vet.

Dogs can get Kennel Cough anywhere. Contracting it in a kennel situation, the Veterinary office, a dog day care or dog park, is more likely due to the concentrations of dogs. Because it is spread like the common cold, kennels can not be to blame. Kennel Cough is self limiting and most dogs quickly recover with owners using children’s dose of cough syrup to relieve the symptoms. Older dogs and young puppies that may not have a full immune system should see their vet.

We do not accept dogs showing signs of kennel cough but it is possible for a dog to come to the facility that has been exposed but is not showing signs.

Diarrhea can be a concern for dog owners. Some pets never get it while being boarded but some do. Occasionally a dog that has had normal stool while here will get diarrhea when they return home. Most dogs recover quickly by being fed a few light meals, or with a bland diet of boiled hamburger and rice for a day or two, a children’s dose of Kaopectate is also an option. If the diarrhea continues, call your vet.

What causes this?  The most common cause of diarrhea is “stress”, which can happen when your dog is boarded. Changes in routine can also cause stress in some dogs, and cause loose or runny stool.

Dietary changes can also cause diarrhea. This type of diarrhea can be avoided by bringing your pet’s own food.  If you think your dog maybe sensitive to changes in diet, it is best to not change foods.  Shadowbrook feeds Iams brand dry dog food. While Iams is a high quality food, it may have a very different formula than what your dog is used to.
The amount of food can also be considered a dietary change. A sudden increase in the amount of food your dog usually eats can also cause digestive issues.  Be sure to advise us the exact amount of food your dog gets at each meal.

If you bring your own food, please bring it in the original undamaged, or a plastic or metal container that can be sealed – no plastic shopping bags.  If you put it in a zip lock bag, please use a canvas or cloth bag as a container.