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1-888-54-HOUND | info@houndhosters.com


Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about our service.

Getting Started

How is HoundHosters different from a boarding kennel or traditional pet sitter?

HoundHosters was created to offer a special kind of service to dog owners and their dogs. We truly believe that our host families will provide you with peace of mind when you leave your dog with us. Placing your dog in a kennel can be very stressful with the constant barking, smells, and overcrowding. Hiring a traditional pet sitter does allow your dog to stay in his/her own environment, but many people overlook the fact that your dog is still left all alone for the majority of the day. Instead, HoundHosters will arrange for your dog to stay with a loving family in a real home environment where he/she receives full attention and his/her home routine is maintained.

How can I start using your service?

It is easy and only take a few minutes. Click on the "New Client" button above and fill out the short form to create your account or you can create your account via facebook. You will then be prompted to fill out all of the necessary information to start using our service. Once we have all of the necessary information you will be able to submit a boarding reservation request.

What is a dog profile?

By completing your dog's profile, you let us know all the important information about your dog. We want to know as much as we can about your dog's daily routine and special needs so that we can select the most suitable host family. Your dog's profile will include information about his/her physical characteristics, medical needs, potty/walking schedule, feeding schedule, and typical behaviors.

Prior to Boarding

What happens after I request a reservation?

After you submit a reservation request, we will send you an email within 24 hours with information about your selected host family. You will be able to meet your potential host family in their home before boarding to make sure everyone gets along. Once you are happy with your host family, you will finalize your reservation and submit payment for the service.

How far in advance do I need to make a reservation?

We encourage you to schedule a reservation once you find out about your out of town commitment to ensure availability of our host families. Our services tend to get booked quickly especially around the holidays. However, we will do our best to find a host family for your dog even in case of urgent requests. New clients will need to submit a reservation request at least a week in advance to allow time for the "meet and greet".

What times can I drop-off and pick-up my dog?

The general drop off and pick up time is between 7 A.M. and 7 P.M. The specific times are selected when booking a reservation and confirmed with your host family during the "meet and greet".

Do you have any requiremnts that a dog must meet?

We love all dogs but they must be well mannered, socialized, and non-destructive. Dogs with aggressive or nervous tendencies, or males that lift their legs inside the home are not a good fit for a home environment. We reserve the right to refuse service to any dog or breed we feel, in our sole discretion, might be a risk to the safety of our host or other pets. Please see the basic requirements below.

Dogs should be:
• Social with other pets and well mannered
• Up to date on flea and tick control
• Up to date with vaccinations
• Well groomed and clean
• Potty trained (if your dog is in the process of crate training, please bring your dog's crate)
• Neutered (un-neutered males may result in additional surcharge)

What are the vacination and health requirements?

For the safety and well-being of the pets in our care, all dogs must be current on the following vaccines:

• Parvo/Distemper
• Rabies
• Bordetella (canine cough)

All dogs must be free of fleas, ticks, parasites and communicable diseases and must be on monthly flea, tick and heart worm prevention. Records are required prior to entering the homes. Please let us know if your pet is micro-chipped. All pets must wear a current rabies tags, or bring it with you to the host.

What do I need to bring with my dog?

You will need to bring the following items with you when you drop-off your dog:

• Food and bowls
• Treats
• Leash and collar with valid tags
• Bedding
• Toys
• Medications
• Crate (if in the middle of crate training)

Will your host families care for puppies, elderly dogs or dogs with special needs?

Absolutely. Pets with special needs are always welcome. Our service was also created to help dogs with special needs when their owners travel out of town. Please make sure to include as much information about your dog's special needs as possible when filling out your dog's profile. Once you submit a reservation request, we will find you a loving host family who can accommodate your dog's needs. Our host families will make sure that your puppy is kept consistent with their home training (crate must be provided). Puppies must have had all of the series of shots before being able to board with us.

Our Hosts

Who are your hosts?

All of our hosts are genuine dog lovers who have met our strict criteria. Some are actively retired people who have owned dogs all their lives and now enjoy the freedom of caring for other people's dogs. Others are younger, often with a family at home, where the addition of a visiting dog is fun for everyone.

Will I have a chance to meet my host prior to boarding?

Yes. Once you have created a client account and submitted a boarding request we will begin the host selection process. We take all of the information about you and your dog and select the most suitable host. Once selected, we will contact you to arrange a free no-obligation "meet & greet". This gives you and your dog the chance to meet the host and and possibly their dog to make sure that everyone is comfortable. Once you approve of the selected host you will be able to finalize your reservation.

How do you select a suitable host for my dog?

We want to provide a convenient service for you while finding a host that best matches your dog's special needs. We choose a host according to your location, availability, and your dog's characteristics. If you have a specific preference, we always do our best to match you with the host that you request.

Are your hosts at home all day?

Every host family is required to be home most of the day to ensure that your dog gets all the love and attention that he/she deserves. However, we do not restrict our hosts from running simple day-to-day errands as long as they don't leave for more then a few of hours at a time.

Do your hosts have fenced in yards?

The majority of our hosts do have fenced in yards. The ones that do not have fenced in yards do have access to areas dedicated to dog walking.

Will my dog stay with the same host in the future?

It is simply a matter of availability. Our goal is to create a long lasting relationship between you and the host. We hope that you will request your previous host for your future boarding needs.

During Boarding

Can I keep in touch with you or the host to check on my dog just to make sure everything is ok?

Of course. You will be able to contact your host (or us directly) during your dog's stay. Your peace of mind is our priority and we want you to know that your pet is having a wonderful time. During the meet and greet, you can talk with your host about the best times to check in on your dog.

How many dogs do you allow per one host?

One host can board a maximum of three dogs at a time. This is because we want to make sure that your dog receives personalized care while his/her home routine is maintained. We strive to make your dogs stay as stress-free as possible.

Where will my dog sleep?

Your dog will sleep where he/she is used to at home. We want your dog to feel safe. Ideally, you will bring your dog's bed for his/her own comfort. Our hosts will also make sure that home rules (e.g. no sleeping on couch) are followed.

Is the host going to follow my feeding schedule?

Yes. Your dog will eat at normal times that he/she is used to at home. When filling out your dog's profile, you will let us know your dog's detailed feeding schedule.

Does my dog go for walks?

During the meet and greet you will be able to discuss with your host how your dog spends his/her day and what activities he/she is used to. Our hosts will take your dog for walks to get his/her daily exercise and explore the new environment. For safety, your dog will never be let off leash when outside of the host's home.

Do you offer day care services?

Yes we do. Your dog will enjoy the day and have fun with our hosts while you are at work or running errands. Please visit the Services & Rates page for more details about prices and our daycare packages.

If needed, will you administer medication?

Yes, we will make sure that your four-legged friend stays current on his/her medications. Our hosts are trained to administer basic medication and we will provide some additional assistance in case of special requests.

What happens if my dog becomes sick or injured?

Hopefully, this will never happen. We will make sure to let you know as soon as possible about any unexpected situation. We want you to stay informed about your dog's well being. In case your dog gets sick or injured, we will immediately take your dog to his/her veterinarian – you will be required to provide your vet's information before you submit a reservation request for your dog.

Will my dog ever be kept in a cage or crate?

No, our hosts offer a real home, cage-less environment. Your pet will not stay in a crate unless specifically requested or in case of a puppy that is being house trained. We ask that you to provide your own crate in these instances.

Will the host ever take my dog to the dog park?

Your dog will go for walks, but our hosts will not take your dog to a dog park. This is for safety purposes and for your peace of mind. We want you to know that your dog is in a family environment and that during his/her stay your dog will not be taken outside of the home (with the exceptions of on-leash walks). Most of our hosts have a fenced in yard where your dog can play and get some exercise.

Will my dog be kept inside or outside of the hosts home?

Your dog will stay inside the host's home. Your pet will go for walks and play with our hosts in his/her backyard during the day. All of our hosts are genuine dog lovers and will never have your dog stay outside.

What do I do if my trip is delayed or if I need to pick up my dog early?

In both cases you will need to let your host know that your plans have changed and when you will pick up your pet. Our hosts are very flexible and always do their best to provide a great service to you. However, please let them know that you will pick up your dog at a different time that previously agreed. Also, please note that there is an upcharge for overstays – visit the Services & Rates page for more details.

General Questions

What is your cancelation policy?

After your reservation has been finalized, you will be able to cancel anytime but you will be charged a cancelation fee as stated below. This is because we have a limited number of host families and once they are booked with you we have to decline requests from other dog owners.

• If you cancel at least 7 days prior your reserved start day, you will be charged a cancellation fee of 25% of the scheduled boarding cost.
• If you cancel with less than 7 days notice, you will be charged the full amount of the scheduled boarding. There is no refund in this case.

When am I charged for boarding services, who do I pay, and what types of payment do you accept?

You will fill out the payment information upon confirming the reservation request (after the meet and greet with your host family). We use the secure PayPal payment service and all major debit/credit cards are accepted. We do not accept checks or cash. You will be charged at the time of confirming your reservation.

May I offer gratuity to my host family?

Absolutely. If you wish to offer a gratuity to your host, please do so when picking up your dog. 100% of the gratuity goes to your host.

Do I need to sign a contract prior to my dog's stay?

Yes, every client will need to sign an electronic contract agreement when the boarding reservation is finalized (after meet and greet with your host). We require our clients to sign a contract to protect themselves and our hosts.

Can I hire my host directly without going through HoundHosters?

All of our hosts are under a contract with HoundHosters to never accept reservations directly from our clients. This would violate the host's exclusive contractual agreement with us and would result in their termination, plus monetary damages for breach of contract.

Do you carry liability insurance?

Absolutely. All of our host families are covered under our blanket liability insurances program.