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Is it normal for dogs to not be exercised off lead in kennels?

(18 Posts)
LibidinousTurkey Thu 31-Dec-15 12:28:35

Our three are booked into kennels for the first time as we are going on holiday <yay!>

Went to look round yesterday and was reasonably happy with the facilities (basic but clean and the staff seemed kind and knowledgeable. We also turned up unannounced and were shown around without qualms which is comforting) but it transpires that all exercise is carried out on lead, albeit several times a day.

Now this makes me uneasy. We don't have a garden as such (just a small yard) but live 2 minutes from open fields so they are used to several episodes of frantic running about daily, on top of "normal" walks. They are also <ahem> high energy and being cooped up in a kennel will be a challenge. DDog3 is an annoying little shit quite spirited and I fear DDogs 1 & 2 may be suicidal if they are cooped up with her too long without exercise. hmm

When I questioned this I was advised that high energy dogs are walked on flexi leads- I will flat out refuse to countenance this though.

So is this normal? This particular kennel comes highly recommended locally but there are others. The reply I received yesterday indicated that there was no chance of them agreeing to off lead exercise at all.

VegetablEsoup Thu 31-Dec-15 12:31:40

they don't know the dogs well enough, can't guarantee total recall so it would be tok dangerous/unreasonable to let them off lead. might also be an insurance issue.
for a short term it's no issue. it's not like they are left in a pen all the time.

slicedfinger Thu 31-Dec-15 12:38:43

We've come across a mixture. Some give very long on lead walks, some several shortish walks (fine for our sight hounds) and one (where SlicedDog was undoubtedly happiest) allowed a massive "play for all" in an enclosed area several times a day. He is fear aggressive, and terrified of dogs that bark, especially small ones. Somehow he not only coped in this environment, but seemed to thrive in it. It's the only place he has stayed where he hasn't come home a pile of clingy nerves. I haven't come across more like that though. Not sure where you are based, but they have a place in SW London, and one in Wales Royvon.

LibidinousTurkey Thu 31-Dec-15 12:49:08

I fear DDog3 would be expelled in an "open play" environment sliced hmm grin

I sort of understand your point veg but I've paid dog walkers in the past who have happily let my dogs off lead. In an enclosed space (they have a securely fenced paddock) I would gladly agree to them being let off lead but that doesn't seem to be an option <sigh>

Moving15 Thu 31-Dec-15 12:51:55

Yes it is quite typical and I would be reassured by this. They wont lose your dogs and won't be distracted from caring for your dogs by looking for other dogs they have lost.
I had a dog who escaped twice from kennels on homeward bound missions. Once it was a jailbreak but once someone let him off lead. I had warned them not to trust him! He looked so placid but he always did a runner if a non family member walked him. He just waited for his opportunity! I have heard so many stories of people losing their dogs while in kennels. Getting that phone call when on hol is awful.
I guess some places just play it safe and have a blanket rule for all dogs. You can search a bit more and there are kennels who will have a field for off lead exercise but it might cost a bit extra.
If your dogs will all be in the same run will they will play together and burn off any extra energy that way?

Ridingthegravytrain Thu 31-Dec-15 12:56:47

Have you thought of something like this?

Our kennels has a few huge fenced in areas where dogs either go out in a group or individually depending on personality

I would be extremely nervous if I thought my dogs were being taken out on walks

LibidinousTurkey Thu 31-Dec-15 12:57:06

I realise I sound a bit naive here but mine are also trained gun dogs, where recall is occasionally a life and death issue so I would expect them to return when called in an enclosed paddock. Obviously though it's not me risking my reputation by making that decision.

And yes moving DDog3 will harass the others constantly they will play together grin

Bubble2bubble Thu 31-Dec-15 14:01:58

Seems to be the norm, with safety a priority. I have seen a couple of kennels with enclosed paddocks where dogs can have supervised play. Presumably means them employing a lot more staff rather than just someone who comes in to walk once or twice a day.. I imagine it's pretty tough for dogs who are used to their offlead runs.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Thu 31-Dec-15 14:08:33

We've used both types of kennels. Two where exercise was off lead in their own paddock or field, either with or without other dogs depending on whether your dogs were dog friendly etc. And one where they didn't have their own exercise area, and the dogs were walked on leads.

We find it easier to have a dog sitter at our house now.

cupcakesandwine Thu 31-Dec-15 17:20:53

Yes I think this is normal and TBH what I would expect. Two of my dogs are immaculately behaved and will come for anyone; the pug does what he feels like. Not fair to expect the kennels to take the risk on other people's dogs coming when called in my view.

FWIW mine get more exercise on a lead than when given "free play". If let off the lead in an enclosed space (as averse to, say, the woods, they just sit there waiting to be collected.

ChairRider4 Fri 01-Jan-16 09:11:09

Yes it is I looked at one that has enclosed area
But in end coughed up the extra for him to stay with my dog walker who also does home boarding so I know he gets at least two good off walk runs a day (they walk him twice a week so know him and his recall ) and huge garden

LibidinousTurkey Fri 01-Jan-16 11:31:20

I'm sceptical there's anyone willing to take on DDog3 such a spirited bunch in their own home TBH. In any case it would have to be someone with no dogs of their own <meaningful glance at DDog3> which, while possible, is IME unlikely to tally with somebody who has the mental toughness experience to cope with all three over the course of a week <hollow laugh>

hollinhurst84 Fri 01-Jan-16 11:53:32

You might be surprised grin
I dog sit for a husky and have no dogs. I'm quite frankly the only person insane enough to do it as she requires around 10k walking a day (and then wants more)

LibidinousTurkey Sat 02-Jan-16 10:56:18

I don't suppose you live in Dorset hollin ? grin

hollinhurst84 Sat 02-Jan-16 11:35:52

Sorry! Opposite end of country grin
I'm forever getting a call "I don't want to put her in kennels and we want a weekend away..."
Last time I took her on a group walk, she has to stay on lead but he didn't warn me how much she adored water. Plunged into the river and swam for ages, then did a 2hr walk, then swam again. And still wanted to carry on

ChairRider4 Sat 02-Jan-16 23:49:29

Ah no both the ladies that run dog walking /dog boarding together both have own dogs
One has a boxer so she well used to bouncy dogs add in my lab and couple other labs no wonder she is so fit with that lot

SaggingTits Tue 05-Jan-16 00:31:23

Yes that's normal practice at kennels. although a few will let them offlead if you sign a disclaimer. It's for safety and insurance reasons.

I used to work at a pound where nobody even owned any of the dogs and they weren't allowed off the lead ever either although I ignored that rule

Branleuse Wed 06-Jan-16 17:57:49

your dogs will be fine walked on a lead for a week, as long as theyre walked.

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