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Ensure your pets are well-kept, safe when boarding

(Source: WAFF Staff) (Source: WAFF Staff)
Learn what to look for and what to avoid when boarding a pet. (Source: WAFF) Learn what to look for and what to avoid when boarding a pet. (Source: WAFF)
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    Click here for expanded information on choosing the right place to board your furry friend when you go on vacation.More >>
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HARTSELLE, AL (WAFF) -

There are things you can do to keep your pet protected while you’re away.

And one North Alabama family hopes you will take those steps, so you won’t go through the heartbreak they went through during their last trip.

“My 25 pound puppy was mauled to death. I asked what happened, they said the other dog had chewed through the kennel and was chewing on my dog like a squeaker toy,” said Jaime Guerriero.

Guerriero’s puppy, Bear, was killed when the family went on vacation. He was only 3 months old.

The family boarded him and their other dog in a local kennel but, the day they were heading home, the phone rang.

“They called and said my dog was killed, we’re just trying to cope with it. We came home and had to put his toys up. My kids are upset. We just have to move forward I guess,” said Guerriero.

Guerriero wants to make sure this doesn’t happen to anyone else’s animal.

“When you entrust somebody to take care of your dogs to take care of them when you go out of town. The 9 hour drive back with my family was not very pleasant. My kids were upset,” Guerriero explained.

Dr. Jan Strother, a veterinarian and owner of North Alabama Cat and Bird Vet Clinic in Hartselle, explained what animal owners should do to keep their furry friends safe.

“You need to be proactive about facility, make sure you know what is going on, make sure they have plans for a pet, if sick or injured,” said Dr. Strother.

Other things she mentioned to check when you are looking at location is make sure it's people friendly, open, happy to take you behind scenes, see where pets are boarded. Make sure there is good security and the cages have secure locks.

The cages have runs and that they’re covered up because dogs can scale cage walls. Also, look to make sure the pets are separated well.

Another option is to find a trusted neighbor to check in and care for your pet at your home, instead of taking the animal out of its natural environment.

“Look at the facility, staff, vet, go onto google, look for good reviews, make sure you are comfortable with people taking care of your four-legged baby,” said Dr. Strother.

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