Traveling with a dog is not an easy task. Although the number of hotels explained Pet friendlymany are still restricting theirs Friendship for pets weighing less than 10 kilos. The same is happening with Renfe trains – a pilot is currently underway with heavier dogs on the Madrid-Barcelona route – with the exception of Cercanías or with some ferry companies such as Trasmediterránea, while many of the airlines inexpensive Under no circumstances do they allow pets to be flown or carried in the hold. Because of this, many families are looking for an alternative to keep their dog in good hands while traveling, but how do you choose the perfect sitter?
“First of all, I would make sure that the nurse has the same philosophy as me. There are still people I call old-school who use punishment and others who take the animal’s emotions into account,” explains Belén Morón Roësset, veterinarian and clinical ethologist at ChallengeVet and Director of the Canine School of the Complutense University of Madrid (UCM). In that the nurse does not work with punishment, even verbally, agrees Cristina González Cano, veterinary ethologist at the Clinical Ethology Service of the Clinical Hospital of the Autonomous University of Barcelona, who adds: “I would say, as essential guidelines, that the person who is to look after him has the appropriate training, is not working under penalty and is licensed to work.”
González Cano opens a melon that has been around for several years, given the proliferation of platforms offering pet sitting services, both as walkers and home visits or shelters. One of the best known is Rover (Gudog is another of them) and while kennels are required to have a zoological core alongside the activity license, keepers here do not need to be professionals or have a license for any species. They fill out a profile, usually detailing their personal experiences with the animals and their ability to care for them (Rover claims it follows a “rigorous selection process” for carers), the peculiarities of their home (when they offer to pets) and the restrictions they impose, for example not caring for puppies or intact male dogs. They operate like an Airbnb of sorts, the owners leave opinions, payments are processed through the internet, which withholds a percentage, and basic veterinary care is offered in return.
Regardless of which option is chosen, it is highly recommended practice that there is prior rapprochement between the dog and the handler. “That the animal knows the keepers with whom it will live and the area when we change habitat is important because if it does not create a lot of uncertainty,” explains González Cano. Ideally, there will be between two and three encounters with the person who will be taking care of the dog and in the environment in which they will be doing so, so that the animal can recognize scents and dispositions and feel less vulnerable. But how do you know that you’re comfortable with this person? “You will see it in the language of the dog; he enjoys, he goes to meet him and asks for caresses,” sums up Morón Roësset.
It is important to see the facilities where our pet is staying. Likewise, in addition to the routine of walks or games, you also need to make sure about the conditions in which it will be, or if it will be with other dogs, or where it will be resting. This is one of the comparisons where a priorilose the apartments where they are mostly used kennel, Cages housing dogs and cats in this type of centers. “If a correct habituation is made to the chenille, there need not be any problems as long as the dog’s needs are met. The problem of residences with kennel is that often, you put it there and they don’t go for a walk, there is no game routine, there is no social interaction, so we reduce the welfare of the animal, “Warns González Cano.
Another point to consider is how flexible the grooming is to fit the pet’s daily schedule. One example is the food, as it is not recommended that the dog change it drastically, which is why it is becoming more common for handlers to ask for their own food to be brought to them. “It’s also important that they feed them as often as their owner feeds them. There are centers that feed them once, and that poses the problem with large dogs that they can later have gastric torsion,” warns Morón Roësset. This pathology, which can lead to the death of the animal, consists of a rotation of the stomach caused by its strong dilatation and is particularly prevented by preventing the dog from eating a lot in a short time and immediately after doing an intense activity .
That’s how you know if you’ve been successful
It is common for information, photos and videos to be sent during the time the dog is with the groomer or in the home showing how the animal has adapted, but one of the best ways to check if you made the right choice around the corner You go to pick up your dog after a while and when the animal sees you, it greets you warmly, but then it goes and plays with the other dogs again. It’s possible that your little heart will be annoyed by this seeming lack of affection, but it’s actually a very good reaction. “It’s fantastic, it shows that the dog has a good bond with you because it knows you’re not going to leave and it shows that it’s not insecure, that it’s comfortable,” says González Cano.
In the event that this is not the case and the animal approaches you unsteadily or exhibits avoidance or fearful behaviors, it is important to give them leeway and some extra space to recover and feel comfortable again. And being able to read dog language is one of the most important qualities of both a good groomer and a good owner, and it’s not that easy: “What’s going through his head is usually pretty far from what he would do.” go through ours in the same situation,” says González Cano.