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  #1  
Old 01-31-2010, 07:10 AM
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Tori Tori is offline
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Default Boarding a diabetic dog

Has anybody boarded their diabetic dog and how did it go. I normally take my pup with me when I go on vacation. Unfortunately, I'm going out of the country so I'll have to board her. I spoke with the kennel owner and she said she has dealt with diabetic dogs and cats before. Any suggestions for things I should ask and how should I supply the insulin...pre-made syringes, etc?
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Old 01-31-2010, 07:41 AM
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Default Re: Boarding a diabetic dog

How long will you be away?

Sun, 31 Jan 2010 07:40:52 (PST)
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Old 01-31-2010, 07:46 AM
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Default Re: Boarding a diabetic dog

I'm leaving on Monday, so Tori will go in after her morning insulin. I'm going to have my daughter pick her up Friday since I'll be home later than the scheduled pick up times, so I'll be back for her PM insulin.
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:06 AM
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Default Re: Boarding a diabetic dog

It would'nt hurt to supply a photo of your dog along with the insulin instructions. If they inject the wrong dog it would not be good. I am facing having to board next month and the vets office where I left him last time is booked. I am afraid to try a new place and will probably just take him with me.
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:14 AM
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Default Re: Boarding a diabetic dog

Taylor...I don't blame you. I always take Tori but this time I can't and it's stressing me.
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Old 01-31-2010, 09:02 AM
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Default Re: Boarding a diabetic dog

I have a pet sitter whose mother has diabetes. She knows how to take care of him. If I didn't have her I'd board with my vet.
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Old 01-31-2010, 11:14 AM
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Default Re: Boarding a diabetic dog

Gosh I hate to say this, I did a short internship (lack of another word) at a boarding kennel during my grooming class.

I was shocked to witness what could and does happen. The owner was pretty good about giving meds but the hired help not so good. She intended to give a diabetic dog her shot but forgot and left it on top of the kennel. I found it the next morning and pointed it out to the owner. He threw it away and didn't mark it on the dogs log. I have also seen them throw away meds that were not given (forgotten) because he was sure the owner would count the meds after they picked up their dog.

There are really good boarding facilities out there but there are some bad ones too. Some have nothing to hide and are proud to have a web cam in thier facilities so you can check in via the web and offer 24 hour attention. Some are left unattended from 5 pm until morning.

I either take my pups with me in the RV on vacation or bring in a trusted full time dog sitter. In my case it is a retired uncle that loves dogs and enjoys staying at my house just to get away.

If the above choices are not available to you, certainly get references from your friends or a trusted vet. I visit many kennel in my area so I can recommend a good boarding facilty to my customers. For my special customers that have needy dogs (epilepsy for the most part), I offer to bring them in my home while they are away, but only one or two at a time.

ETA: I forgot to mention that the owner took away all food and water by 3 pm so there wouldn't be much of a mess to clean up in the morning Dogs go out for tha last time at 5 pm then the kennel is shut down for the night (unattended) until 8 am. Don't want to scare you but just make you aware. Some are just in it for the easy money.

John (Roxee's Dad)

Last edited by Roxee'sDad; 01-31-2010 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 01-31-2010, 04:27 PM
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Default Re: Boarding a diabetic dog

You scared me. The kennel I was looking into is across the street from where I work and the owners live on the premises. Also, all of their workers are trained in dog first aid and c.p.r. and they have a vet on call 24 hours a day. I'm going to meet with them before deciding if I will send her there. There is another one that Tori went to years ago and they said they have dealt with diabetic pets and Tori's vet is down the road, but this place doesn't make me as comfortable as the first place. Thanks.
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Old 02-01-2010, 08:50 AM
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Default Re: Boarding a diabetic dog

We love love LOVE our boarding facility. LOVE THEM. Dixon also goes there for daycare 1-2 times per week. They love Dixon and definitely try to do best by him.

That being said, I am just going to be honest with you and say that each time we have boarded him his BGLS have gone up to 600+. Not necessarily everyday, but often enough that we just accept that he will have HIGH BGLs when he is boarded. It sucks and we hate it, but we travel to places where we can not take the dog and we aren't going to stop doing that completely just because the dog has diabetes. I am guessing that what happens is probably a combo of the following
a). a worker forgets to give Dixon his shot (which I would much rather have happen that have him get two shots so I always stress "when in doubt, DO NOT INJECT!")
b). His food is messed up (this happens because part of Dixon's food has to be refrigerated and then mixed in with the dry and I suspect that sometimes he just gets the dry food)
c). He crashes due to increased exercise (doggie daycare is very active!)

Now we could simply chose to board him at the vet. I am pretty sure that his meds and diet would be adhered much better. BUT he would be absolutely miserable stuck in a vet cage all day while we are gone. My husband and I have decided that it is better for him to go to his regular boarding facility and we agree to accept the risk that his BGLs will not be well managed while there. As a previous poster wrote, the owners/managers of a kennel can be fantastic (as is the case with us), but the kennel workers who are actually doing the feeding, cleaning, and medicating are probably not the smartest most organized people in the world and mistakes are going to happen regularly (and those mistakes will probably not be reported or caught). It is just one of those things you need to accept if you board your dog.

I will also say that I know that our kennel would be great about getting Dixon to the vet right away if needed (stopped eating, excessive urination, behavior "not right"). We call every day while we are away and get an update and we know that if we ever say "take him to the vet", they will.
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Old 02-01-2010, 08:58 AM
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Default Re: Boarding a diabetic dog

Hints for making the boarding/medication process smoother...

We label EVERYTHING with name and instructions (so food is label with name and amount to be given per feeding and # of times per day that is to be done)

We label each syringe with the date and AM or PM so that workers can easy tell whether a shot has been given or not. We also give 4 extra syringes in case a need gets bent or dropped or lost or whatever.

We provide a sharps container

We give them out BGL monitor and test strips and ask them to test 2 x day (before giving food and injection). This isn't always done (which is what makes me think that sometimes they skip an injection), but we at least have some data that can be reported to us while we are gone. Also if the dog is acting "weird" the workers can test and see if he needs a snack or if BGLS are sky high.

We provide a sheet for BGL data to be written.

I tried to give them a check sheet for each day with the following...

AM
Check BGL
Feed breakfast (dry food, green beans, cottage cheese)
Insulin injection

PM
Check BGL
Feed dinner (dry food, green beans, cottage cheese)
Insulin injection

But they told me they had their own system

I also write out detailed instructions about how to do everything (test BGL, give injection, feed) as well as behaviors to look out for.
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