Hubby and I are going away for a well-deserved weekend break. We’ll only be gone a couple of days and are flying, so taking Jasmine with us is not an option. Thus, we’re going to board her at a kennel.
Now my first choice of kennels, American K9 Country, was, unfortunately, fully booked when I called 3 weeks ago. Since they are a small kennel with only 12 runs, well, I’m disappointed but not surprised. I’m even less surprised given the alternatives.
The first kennel I found was at a dog training facility. It wasn’t bad. The kennel area was relatively clean. However, the kennels were not segregated; only chain link fencing stood between the kennels, and I think Jasmine would’ve been really spooked to be that exposed. So, I decided to look further.
I found what looked like a great place on the Internet and booked her stay with them. I wanted to go over and view the kennels this past weekend; the person who answered the phone told me that they only did “tours” of the kennel on Wednesdays. Um, okay. Here’s a potential new customer, and they don’t want to show you their facility except on Wednesdays? Hm. I asked again–I only wanted a couple of minutes to see the kennels. Again, the person on the phone just said, “we only do tours on Wednesdays.” Well, it’s a family-run place and the kennel is adjacent to their home. I gave them the benefit of the doubt.
I went for the tour on Wednesday. The “tour” consisted of climbing down a flight of stairs into their basement from their office and walking around a very cramped kennel area. It took all of two minutes. There were very narrow inside/outside dog runs that were wet–it looks like they had just hosed the place down. Wooden pallets were on the ground of the runs. I suppose this was what kept the dogs dry. Most of the dogs did not have beds in the runs; there was only one dog there in the runs that had a soft bed. Not good.
There were stainless steel crates (like those used in vets offices) on both ends of the runs; they had dogs in them. I looked at them and asked if that was where Jasmine would be kept. The “guide” (the son of the owner) said no, those were the “day care” dogs. My dog would get a full run. Oh yippee. This means that this kennel’s “doggie day care” consists of putting a dog in a crate? Sheesh.
Okay, so it’s hard to keep a kennel clean, but this place was way too dark, dingy, smelly and damp. The thought that came into my head was that this was a Doggie Dungeon. I felt so bad for the dogs. Now, it was NOT unclean, it was just dark and dank…dogs were barking, leaping…oh, the Pirates of the Caribbean jail came into my mind. I felt like springing all of the dogs. But I was 2 days away from kenneling Jasmine; I didn’t want to be put on the spot and NOT have a place for her. I kept the reservation and left.
As I drove back to the office, the more I thought about it, the less happy I was of the prospect of Jasmine staying there. I got back to the office and started to search for an alternative. I found another place down the road from Doggie Dungeon and called straight away. They had room, and I could go see the place anytime during business hours. I hopped in my car, drove down there and was pleased to see a fairly clean, straightforward kennel. What struck me was the hundreds of pictures of people and their dogs in front of the kennel’s building all over the lobby area. Okay. I felt much better. After looking at the facility, I knew right away that it was a better environment for Jasmine. So she’s staying there. It’s still not as clean and nice as American K9 Country, but at least I have an alternative.
I called and canceled my reservation at the Doggie Dungeon. They were curt when I told them I was canceling, brusquely said “FINE” and hung up the phone. I shouldn’t have trusted a nice website and claims about being champion breeders. A narrow escape for my pup. No dungeon for my doggie. *whew*