Wohin mit hund und katze im Urlaub

Where to take your dog and cat on holiday?

The anticipation is rising, the long-awaited holiday is approaching. Maybe it won't be the campsite on the Baltic Sea, but a faraway holiday destination in Southern Europe? Sun, beach and palm trees await you. But the stresses and strains of the journey, the entry regulations, the local strays, the risk of infection - the hurdles and dangers for your pet are too high for you. You have decided: Your four-legged friend stays at home this time. But where to take your dog or cat on holiday? Where will your pet be reliably cared for and, above all, where will he or she be really well?

First holiday without a pet: What do I need to bear in mind?

You know your darling best and can best assess which type of care is best for you. A few questions will help you decide:

  • Is my dog/cat old enough to be looked after by someone else?

Example: As a new pet owner, it is difficult to separate anyway, but in fact your puppy or pubescent young animal is also best off with you. If you want to travel alone, postpone your travel plans for a few months until your pet is fully grown - this is also more relaxed for you.

  • Is the type of care suitable for the duration of my holiday?

Example: Your best buddy is an absolute cat lover, but hardly ever at home all day? Then he's probably not the first choice.

  • Does my dog/cat have special needs that can't be met everywhere?

Example: If your sister lives on the third floor without a lift and your dog can no longer climb stairs, housing him there would not be ideal.

  • Is my pet sociable and suitable in character to be with other animals for a longer period of time?

Example: Your cat Wilma is already 11 years old and likes to be rested - someone who checks on her twice a day is probably the best option.

With cats, you should remember that they are creatures of habit and feel most comfortable at home. Therefore, boarding is often the last option for pet care for many cat owners anyway.

Our tip: If you know what your pet needs, you can start looking for suitable care options. And if you start early enough, the chances increase that you won't have to compromise on the solution - whether it's because there are still enough places available at the most popular pet sitter in town or because your friend can take a few days off to look after your pet.

Family and friends: Often the first choice

For many dog and cat owners, family members, friends and neighbours are the best option to ensure that their pets are well looked after. The advantage: your pet already knows these people and they also know your pet and its quirks.

For many outdoor cats, holiday care is easy to arrange: They roam around outside most of the day anyway. They usually sleep and eat at home. In the best case, they have a sheltered place where they can stay flexibly. If someone is there at feeding time, feeds them, changes the water and checks whether the little tiger is doing well and perhaps spoils it with a stroke, that is often enough.

Young indoor cats in particular need a little more exercise: it is advisable to have someone with enough time to take care of them and give your cat some playtime.

Many dogs have less difficulty changing places than cats. Your pelt could therefore possibly be cared for at a friend's or family's home if he knows the surroundings and people well enough. Perhaps it might be a good idea for friends or family to "house-sit" with you? The advantages: The infrastructure at your home is available, it doesn't cost anything (but some people will certainly be happy about a local delicacy or another souvenir from their holiday) and you can always be sure that your pet is doing well.

Pet boarding

A second option is pet boarding. There are specialised cat boarding facilities as well as dog boarding facilities that take in your pet during your holiday.

Your four-legged friends will at least be looked after by knowledgeable persons (who must provide appropriate proof), often even by animal caretakers or veterinary assistants, who will lovingly and dedicatedly do everything to make your pet feel comfortable. They not only take care of the animals, but also groom them, pamper them with cuddles and play with them.

If you are travelling during the holidays, it is advisable to secure a place in pet boarding early on. In the low season, it is often easier to find a place spontaneously (e.g. for a short trip without a dog at the weekend).

From what age are animals accepted?

The age at which dogs and cats can be taken in varies from pet boarding facility to pet boarding facility: Some operators, for example, take in dogs as early as 3 months. This may make it easier for your pet to get used to the new environment, as the bond with the person is not yet as strong at this age. Others require dogs to be at least 6 months old. However, since you would probably miss your cat or dog baby terribly, the best option is still to postpone larger trips until the little ones are a good year old.

Pet boarding - the costs

When it comes to boarding costs, you should expect to pay around 10-25 euros a day for your dog, while a cat usually costs less (7-20 euros/day). The total price for a whole week is often a little less than the normal daily price.

Our tip: If you have a pet boarding facility near you, why not arrange a trial appointment, take a close look at everything on site and get to know the carers. This is the best way to get a feeling for whether a boarding facility is right for you.

Animal shelter

Some animal shelters also offer holiday care for dogs and cats. At best, the animals are assigned their own little realm for the duration of their stay and are cared for by trained animal caretakers - with a good staffing ratio, cuddling hours and romping rounds are included. However, it is worth taking a look behind the scenes before you sign a care contract.

Some animal shelters also offer a home care service, just ask! The costs for care are similar to those of a boarding kennel, about 10-20 euros/night.

Pet sitter

Another option is to hire a cat sitter or dog sitter to look after your pet at home instead of your family or friends. You can find loving cat mums and passionate dog lovers, for example, through portals on the internet. Most of them have years of experience in dealing with cats and dogs. Professional pet sitters have a certificate of competence and, in contrast to private helpers, may be paid for their services. In the event of an insurance claim, you are covered by the dog sitter's company dog liability insurance. For example, they visit your furry friend twice a day or are even prepared to stay overnight. The costs for a pet sitter are often between 10-15 euros per day.

Our tip: Of course, the chemistry between you has to be right. Therefore, start looking for a pet sitter early enough, get to know each other, test the pet sitter a few times and, in the best case, you will not only have a reliable and competent pet sitter for your next holiday, but also a caring helper for the time in between.

Holidays without dog and cat - without a guilty conscienceen

Very few dog owners find it easy to leave their pet behind and go on a relaxed holiday. Often the guilty conscience travels with them: "Is my pet really doing well right now? After all, I know him best ...". But if you have found a good solution, you don't have to worry. Because holidays without a dog offer advantages for both sides:

  • Romping around with other dogs: Many dogs enjoy it when they have the opportunity to romp around with their fellow dogs.
  • Spare them unnecessary stress: Travelling with a dog can be quite demanding. Especially when travelling by air or sea, the stresses and strains for four-legged friends should not be underestimated. A flight in the cargo hold is certainly not easy for every dog, and a ferry crossing with seasickness is no fun for your pet either.

Holidays with recreational value: You have a senior at home and would like to take an active holiday in the Alps? Or are you planning a relaxing pool holiday, but your chosen hotel is neither particularly dog-friendly nor does it have a dog beach? Even then, separate holidays are highly recommended - after all, masters and mistresses also need to relax and recharge their batteries. Then everyday life together at home is all the more enjoyable afterwards.

Conclusion: The best time of the year can also take place without your pet. Contrary to the widespread opinion of many people without pets, no one has to give up their holiday just because they give a home to lovable furry noses. As a rule, a good solution can be found for your four-legged friend. Tell us about your personal solution for the holiday season: Where does your pet spend his holiday while you explore the world without him?

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