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The Kennel-9

The Animal Rescue League of Boston’s (ARL) new safety campaign, “The Kennel-9”, gives pet owners nine things to consider before boarding their pet.

Currently there are no state-wide regulations that govern boarding kennels and animal daycare facilities in Massachusetts, which is why ARL and other animal welfare organizations are advocating for standards that would mandate the creation of new state laws to protect pets.

As part of our 2019-2020 legislative agenda, ARL is actively supporting the bill, An Act protecting the health and safety of puppies and kittens in cities and towns. If passed, this bill would establish regulations within the operation of boarding kennels and daycare facilities, such as: staff qualifications; provider/dog ratios; play group size and supervision; facility and maintenance requirements; dog handling; emergency response training; insurance; and more

Nine Things to Consider Before Boarding Your Pet

While ARL pushes for this important new piece of legislation to protect pets in Massachusetts, we encourage pet owners to do their research before boarding their cat or dog. Here are nine things to consider before you board your pet:

1   SEE FOR YOURSELF

Can you see the kennels and common areas where your animal will be boarded? During your pet’s stay, can you check on them remotely via webcam?

2  SOUND THE ALARM

Does the facility have a written emergency response procedure in the event of fire, power outage, or other
disaster? Does the kennel have working fire and carbon monoxide detectors, sprinkler systems, and a back-up power generator?

3 LICENSE, PLEASE

Does the kennel have a current operating license issued by a local city or town? According to the license, how many animals can be boarded at one time? How many animals are currently housed?

4 IN CASE OF A MEDICAL EMERGENCY

Are you contacted if your animal experiences an unexpected medical condition or injury? Is there a veterinarian on staff, or does the facility have a veterinarian on call? Do you sign a waiver giving permission to have your animal treated?

5 TLC

What is the ratio of staff to animals? Is there 24-hour on-site supervision? If not, are animals monitored by video camera? What training or experience does the staff caring for animals have?

6 SOCIAL CIRCLE

Do dogs play together in common areas? Are these play groups supervised at all times? Are dogs grouped together by size and/or temperament? Can you choose to have your dog not participate in group activities?

7 INFECTION PRECAUTIONS
Does the facility require up-to-date vaccination records for all boarders? What documentation is required for your pet to be admitted?

8 FELINE FRIENDS

Does the facility allow cats? Are they separated from the sight and noise of dogs?

9 GET IT IN WRITING

Will the facility give you written documentation of their procedures or confirmation of any special requests for your pet?