Laws and Regulations
It is important to take note of your region’s planning and zoning regulations before you commit to buying property for your business or turning land you already own into a boarding facility.
There are a variety of different factors to take into consideration – your local council or county office will be able to point you to the relevant documents and legislation that you will need to consider before you begin your business venture.
In the UK, you will need to apply for the Animal Boarding Establishment Licence. This means that you are qualified and have the means to provide safe, consistent care to other people’s pets over a period of time. The licence must be renewed every year and imposes strict rules for how animals are kept while in your care.
At Hillguards, we not only meet these guidelines but we pride ourselves on surpassing them as a matter of course. We keep detailed records of our boarders, including their microchip numbers, vaccination records and emergency contacts on file at all times. No animal will be admitted to our facility without up to date vaccination records and a registered microchip. Owners must sign a detailed contract, outlining our responsibilities and theirs, prior to the pet’s stay with us. We have a vet on site 24/7 however we will accommodate requests to have the pet’s original vet as the primary medical assistance if owners prefer.
What is a safeguard?
These safeguards may seem excessive however we feel that the extra effort pays off in the rare event of a dispute or issue. We go to this trouble in order to protect ourselves, our clients and our boarders, who we hope have a good time during their stay here.
It is important that you, as a potential boarding facility owner, set up your admittance procedure thoroughly. It’s not just about getting the owner’s travel dates and a phone number.
We conduct a short interview with the owner prior to their first time boarding with us. During this time, we ask them about their animals, what their daily routine looks like, any medications they take and any conditions they may have that will need monitoring. We also ask about their animal’s demeanour – is the dog friendly with others? Does he prefer high-impact activities or a leisurely stroll? Is he food possessive? Collar or harness? All of these things will help us to make the experience a happy one, particularly for animals who may be stressed or anxious at being away from home for the first time. It also helps us to avoid situations that may be unpleasant for the animal – dogs used to being walked alone should not simply be left to their own devices within a large group of dogs that already know one another. That is a recipe for accidents and possibly injury.