VET’S VIEW: Make sure your pet is happy when you go on holiday

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WE’VE chatted about UK holidays with your pet, but if you are off abroad this summer, you will need to leave your pet behind somewhere safe and secure.

But who is trustworthy enough to care for your beloved pet while you’re on a beach hundreds of miles away?

Petsitter vs boarding kennel/cattery is a tough decision.

Would your pet prefer a kennel, or be happier in the comfort of their own home?

Has your pet got special medical needs, such as arthritis, diabetes, that means it needs a certain type of care?

Friends and family recommendations are best.

With petsitters, check personal references and invite them over to meet your pet, discuss care, and plan their visits. If boarding, request a tour of the facilities before booking – checking for overall cleanliness, feeding and exercise timetables, friendliness, knowledge, and willingness to accommodate individual pet requirements or deal with emergency situations.

Boarding kennels may offer more attention, supervision and security than left at home alone to be visited by petsitters, with skilled staff spotting any problems. But remember some pets can get stressed in unfamiliar environments, so places offering additional services, such as grooming, training and bathing, may benefit pets more dependent on human contact.

Catteries are usually outdoor or indoor, depending on outside runs, and should feature sneeze barriers, helping to prevent infectious disease spread, plus scratching posts, toys, shelves, and adequate space to exercise and move around.

Make sure your pet’s vaccinations (including certificate) are up to date.

Vaccinating the day you depart may satisfy kennel or cattery requirements, but probably won’t offer best protection. If your pet is boarding, bring its own toys, blankets, treats, familiar unwashed bedding and food to reassure it, reducing stress and chances of upset stomach.

Finally, have a great trip, knowing your pet’s safe and will be happy to see you when you get back!