How Much Is Dog Boarding?

How Much Is Dog Boarding?

How Much Is Dog Boarding?

If you're a pet parent, it's important to know how much dog boarding is so you can factor that amount into your total budget. Get budgeting advice here.


Roughly 44.6% of American households own at least one dog, with there being about 62 million dogs across the nation. With so many pet parents, knowing how to take care of your puppy is crucial.

One of the biggest challenges facing pet parents is the dog boarding cost while traveling. But how much is dog boarding, and how will it affect your travel expenses?

If you're curious about travel costs for boarding your pet, we're here to help. Read on for a thorough examination of how much dog boarding costs while you're planning your travel.

What Is Dog Boarding?

To start, what is dog boarding? Is there any reason to go with dog boarding instead of hiring a pet sitter?

Dog boarding lets you put your pet care in the hands of someone else while you travel. Put simply, dog boarding is giving your dog to a company to care for rather than having someone come by your house to care for them.

Some dog boarding is simple and low-cost and is essentially a comfortable pet shelter. Others are full-on puppy resorts that engage with and care for your pets beyond their basic necessities.

Dog boarding is often necessary while traveling. Dogs are high-maintenance animals that don't do well if left locked in your home for days or weeks while you travel. Even if they have adequate food and water, they need exercise, socialization, and somewhere to use the restroom.

As such, this pet care often gets factored into travel expenses. It's important to know a reputable and trustworthy dog boarding company before you travel so you aren't leaving your dog in dangerous hands.

Type of Boarding

Now that we know more about the industry, what are the types of dog boarding you can find? The type of dog boarding you look for can have massive impacts on the overall dog boarding cost. Here are the most common types of dog boarding.

In-Home Boarding

In-home boarding is usually done on a small scale. As the name suggests, in-home boarding is when someone - usually a professional pet sitter - keeps your dog in their home for you.

In-home boarding is partially common because it's the term for whenever you have a friend keep a pet while you're out of town. However, we're looking at the professional industry rather than a friend doing you a solid.

Private dog sitters often take care of your pet as if it were their own. They're usually allowed anywhere in the home (with some exceptions) and have much deeper personalized care. If you have a dog with special needs such as medicine or separation anxiety, this is a great way to help.

It's also great if your dog gets nervous around other dogs or has behavioral issues. If this is the situation, you should talk with the in-home boarder and ensure that they're taking care of only your dog, or a few others. Some boarders may have several pets to care for at once.

Pet Hotels

Pet hotels are a step beyond in-home boarding in terms of personalized care for your pet. Pet hotels are high-end retreats for your dog if they're not able - or if you don't want - to deal with kennels or other pet options.

These are often fancy, which means that they're the most expensive option you should expect to find. Pet hotels can include recreational areas, exercise, and even pools for your pets. These aren't just places for your dog to stay; you may have trouble getting them out of the hotel.

Many hotels also offer webcams for owners to look through. These webcams give you the ability to check in on your puppy, so if you're the one with separation anxiety, it's a great choice.

The cost will change drastically depending on the individual hotel, much like how it is for human hotels. The features they offer are the main thing to look out for. Some come with full maid and turndown services, so if that feels unnecessary, cut costs by finding a different hotel.

Vet Boarding

Vet boarding is another popular option for boarding that puts your dog in the most expert hands available. Many professional vet offices give boarding services that are comfortable, high-quality, and clean.

Best of all, they're in a medical facility. If you have a dog that has health issues, this is a great way to make sure they're safe while you travel.

You should try to go with vet boarding from your current vet. That way, you know the people with your dog are familiar with them and their condition. If your vet doesn't offer boarding, don't hesitate to find a vet that will.

That said, vets aren't cheap, and vet boarding isn't a budget option. While it isn't quite as expensive as a pet hotel, it's still something that you should expect to pay dozens of dollars a night.

Another thing to keep in mind is that vet boarding isn't always the most enjoyable for a pet. They'll be kept in the same sterile areas that pets waiting for medical attention are kept in. If your dog doesn't have any sort of medical issue or you're worried they won't be happy in a cage, this isn't the best choice for them.

Still, if your animal has medical issues, this is by far the best choice. You can alleviate their discomfort by not leaving them with a vet for too long. The best way to improve their stay is to make sure they're staying with a trusted vet they're comfortable with.


Finally, kennels are one of the most popular options for dog boarding. Pet kennels will keep all sorts of animals, sometimes letting them mingle. If you've thought of pet boarding, then a kennel is likely what you've had in mind, as they're both the most popular and the most basic.

At a kennel, you should expect your dog to have all their needs met - but that's about the extent of what you should expect. Your dog will have food and water daily, enjoy walks or time outdoors, and will have a mat or cot to sleep on. They'll almost certainly sleep inside an individual cage or a larger, multi-occupant kennel.

Another thing you should expect is for your dog to interact with others. If your dog has behavioral issues, this may cause problems. If other dogs have behavioral issues, this could also cause a problem, which is a threat that makes some pet parents avoid kennels.

Many kennels also have areas where the cage is split between indoor and outdoor runs. That gives your dog somewhere to exercise and enjoy the outdoors at their leisure.

One issue you may have arise is that kennels can turn away dogs that have certain problems. Fleas or other medical issues can make it so they don't want your dog to mingle with others. On the other hand, some kennels don't do this, and then your dog comes back with fleas!

Overall, kennels are the cheapest, most basic option for dog boarding. If you're going out of town long-term, this is often the best option on a budget.

Influences on Dog Boarding Cost

Now that we know the most common types of dog boarding, what else is impacting the cost? The dominant cost factor is the type of dog boarding you find, but it's not the only thing you should consider. Here are some of the other factors you should think about when looking for a dog boarding company.

Offered Services

One thing that's going to have a massive impact on the price is what services are offered by the dog boarders. You should look for boarders that offer optional services or services you need.

If they offer mandatory services that you don't need, then you're paying for services you aren't using. Do they offer a maid service for your dog, but that feels a little excessive? That service is going to increase your price, so find somewhere that doesn't offer such a service.

Another factor in services is the quality of the boarder itself. Yes, pet hotels are fun, beautiful, and let your pet relax in style, but does your pet really care about having a plush bed and pool? If your pet doesn't care about such pampering, you're increasing your price for no notable benefit.

That said, not every service that's offered is for the dog. That same pet hotel may offer a webcam that lets you check in on your animal. If you're scared about leaving your pet alone for so long, that service can do wonders for improving your mental health.

In-home boarding is arguably the most affected by offered services. Speak to your pet boarder and see what they offer and how you can negotiate a better price. The services offered will range heavily from person to person, so don't hesitate to shop around.

Your Dog's Behavior

Another factor to consider isn't the boarder, but your dog. Some boarders will charge more for dogs that have behavioral issues.

That's because the labor of caring for your dog goes up massively if your dog isn't well-behaved. Does your in-home boarder need to worry about your dog chewing on their cushions or using their carpet as a bathroom? What if the dog has aggressive behavior and the boarder is worried about their safety?

One place where your dog's behavior will most come into play is kennels. Misbehaved dogs often are kept separate from others and cared for independently. While this keeps your dog - and others - safer, it also causes more labor for the kennel, usually increasing the price.

It's also within the rights of any boarder to refuse to board your dog if it doesn't behave. You'll most see this in kennels and pet hotels where the dog is going to interact with others. In-home boarders are also likely to refuse to care for a poorly-behaved dog.

If your dog lacks any training or is naturally unruly, it's sometimes best to just hire a pet sitter. A pet sitter that the dog is familiar with can come in, feed them, let them out for a walk, and bring them back. That minimizes the contact others will have with the dog.

Believe it or not, some kennels or hotels will even charge more for dog breeds that are stereotypically more aggressive. Communicate clearly with your boarder before you book a stay.

Length of Stay

Speaking of stay, the length of your stay is going to be a huge factor in how much you spend. Most boarders charge not by week, but by day. As such, you can expect every night to cost more and more.

The most obvious way to keep costs down with this factor is to shorten your dog's stay. That may mean cutting your vacation short, so it isn't always desirable or possible.

Another way is to see if any boarders will keep your dog at a discount for longer periods. Some places may allow you to book for a lengthy stay at a lower per-day cost. While this will ultimately be more expensive than a shorter stay, it may make one boarder cheaper than the other.

Kennels are often the least expensive per day, while pet hotels will be the most expensive. Services added sometimes are added per day, but some are instead added as a flat cost. Speak to the boarder about how their services are added up so you aren't caught off guard when it's time to pick up your pup.

How Much Is Dog Boarding?

How much is dog boarding overall? The cost depends heavily on the type of dog boarding you're using, your dog's behavior and needs, and how long you'll be keeping your dog boarded. Kennels are often the cheapest option.

Doggies Gone Wild is happy to offer luxury dog boarding in Miami and Doral. We're happy to offer climate-controlled rooms and luxury suites, highly-trained, caring staff, two meals a day, as well as indoor and outdoor playgrounds. Contact us today to discuss how we can make your puppy's first night with us free.

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