Just because your dog has a brace, that is no reason to miss your much anticipated vacation. If your dog is lucky enough to be going with you, then just follow your normal wearing schedule. If not, you still can have that much needed vacation provided your boarding facility or pet sitter is willing to follow some simple parameters about wearing the brace while your dog is under their care.
Using A Boarding Facility
If taking your dog to a boarding facility, let them know in advance that your dog will be wearing a brace and will require additional attention. It is important that the boarding personnel know how to put the brace on and take the brace off your dog. Arrange a time with the manager of the facility or the specific person caring for your dog to show them how to properly put the brace on your dog. Have them practice putting the brace on and taking it off. Be sure to leave written instructions and the link to the video on our website showing how to put the brace on the dog. They can also call our facility with any questions.
You will need to make the decision whether your dog should or should not wear their brace while in their kennel. Most dogs should be able to wear their brace during the day without supervision. If you believe your dog may get bored during the day, or another dog in the kennel may get bored, and chew the brace, then your dog should not wear it unless they are directly supervised. It’s essential that the brace is taken off every night.
With all braces, it is important that the dog be wearing the brace when they go out for walks or into the play yard. Boarding personnel need to be sure to powder the brace each time they put it on your dog.
Using A Pet Sitter
If you have a pet sitter coming to your home, meet with them prior to leaving on your vacation to show them how to put the brace on your dog and have them practice doing so several times. Be sure to leave the written instructions with them and the link to the video on our website. They can also call our facility with any questions.
The sitter can follow the same wearing schedule that you follow. If the sitter stays overnight, they will put the brace on your dog first thing in the morning before they go out to potty. If your dog wears the brace all day, then they would leave it on as you do. At night after the last potty break, they will remove the brace before bedtime. Be sure they know to put the brace back on your dog if they awaken during the night to go outside for a potty call.
If the pet sitter does not stay in your home and comes for visits throughout the day, they still can follow your usual brace schedule. If your dog does not wear the brace while inside because they are extremely calm and sleep all day or they are not trustworthy enough to not chew the brace, then the sitter will need to remove the brace when they leave and put the brace back on each time they arrive.
Brand New Brace
If you just received your brace and your dog will be boarded or with a pet sitter, we typically recommend that your dog does not wear their leg brace until you return home from your vacation. There is a gradual break-in process when you first receive the brace. It is vital that the break-in process, which takes one to two weeks, is supervised so your dog learns not to chew the brace and that the brace is always associated with good things. A boarding facility or pet sitter isn’t generally able to keep a constant eye on your dog and does not have the time to put the brace on and take it off multiple times a day.
Taking the time to educate the staff of the boarding facility or your pet sitter prior to leaving will help you to have a worry-free vacation. Being able to relax, knowing your dog and their injury are being well cared for while you are gone will go a long way toward helping both you and your dog have a happier vacation.