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Wish Penny luck. Or more specifically, our friends. After two years we are going on our first extended vacation without the dog. We've left her with her doggie daycare for weekends before as they don't kennel the dogs separately, which she can't handle. (We had a horrible experience trying to use a traditional kennel.) But for 5 days it would be too much and too expensive to leave her boarded, so our friends who know her and have a dog she occasionally plays with, are going to dog sit her. They'll try taking her to their house, or if it doesn't work out then one of them will stay at our place with Penny. Of course she's been extra naughty and destructive this week, giving us anxiety that we will be down one family of friends come next week. But on the bright side, our friend is our vet's sister!
 

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Please let us know how it works out. Ziva will be staying at a kennel for two nights in a month and I am already nervous. The kennel is exceptionally nice and the one we always used with our Brittany. The owner of the kennel knows he may be in for a treat :D Would love to hear how others handled their first "away".
 

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We just picked our pup up from a 3 day stay at a dog camp. We (and she) lucked out on this place because the owners of the camp have their own 8 month old V! :D

I was really impressed with the camp as they introduced Mischa to the 30 dog pack one by one to make sure she got along with others. Of course she passed with flying colours, she loves other dogs.
They use a horse barn setup with a fenced in field, so the dogs are free to roam, and sleep in stalls with 3-4 other dogs....but our Mischa got special treatment and slept with the owners the first night. lol

We don't even let her sleep in our bed, but they were so in love with her and Mischa got along really well with their girl Tia, so we didn't mind allowing it.

She was extremely exhausted from all of the playing, and barely moved last night. She's back to her old energetic self this morning. And to top it off, she even remember the rules of the house.

These dogs are very social, I wouldn't worry or feel bad about leaving them as long as you've found the right place.

-Dennis

ps. we love our little girl, but man oh man was that little vacation nice! We spent the long weekend kayaking, tree-trecking, zip-lining, rock climbing, etc... but feel so well rested just from the break from our puppy. She's a great dog, but as you all know....a real handful!
 

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I have never heard of a dog "camp" before but what a great idea. That would be especially helpful not only as a break to the owners, but as a learning experience for a pup, say under 6 months old.

Being a one dog family, one of the things we did was purposly take our V to a puppy daycare a few times before she turned 6 months. Not for a break, but to expose the dog to other dogs and new experiences in those early months when they are learning the ways of the world. At the daycare there were rotated small dog and large dog playtimes and we were able to get them to include ours in both after explaining our purpose. I feel it has been very helpful later in her life with social ettiquette around other dogs above and beyond the fact that this breed is already known for doing well with others to begin with.

A dog camp would be wonderful for the same purpose.
 

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Our first kenneling experience was three weeks long, while we were on vacation in Australia. We took Boone back to the breeder for Kenneling. She said that he just sat at the back of the kennel and stared at her, not afraid, just staring very intently at her every move.
After a week she finally couldn't take it any longer, so she threw out some quail for him and put him to work, just to make sure he was okay. She continued to use him for training for the remainder of his kenneling. Apparently she needed a steady dog for backing work with her other dogs. Which was really cool because I had no way to really teach him to back.
I got two weeks of pro training for price of boarding. ;D
She loved having him back.

We used the neighbor girl across the street for pet sitting many times and it worked especially well. The dogs ate a lot of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches under her care. :D
 

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So after five days we returned last night to mixed results with having our friends watch Penny. She got along great with the family and they had fun taking her on walks and playing in the backyard with their kids and their dog. However, due to moving issues on their end they never could take Penny to their house so it required leaving Pen in her crate for extended periods of time at our place and regular visits and one of them sleeping at our place (with a four legged cuddler, of course.)

Penny is still suffering from some pretty bad separation anxiety she developed around 18 months. There were two occasions where they found some blood, presumably from her paws due to her freaking out in the wire crate and trying to dig her way out. I've witnessed her do it before, hurting her snout. They switched to the plastic crate after the first incident, which probably was also made worse due to fireworks as it was 4th of July weekend.

We had made arrangements for them to use the dog daycare as a backup so they did drop her off there for one night and two of the days. And Penny seemed fine last night so it ended well. We're still lacking a good long-term solution as I don't want to be 100% reliant on this daycare for anytime we need to leave town. We're looking into dog sitters as a possibility. Or maybe we can find another vizsla owner in northern Illinois that wants to trade....?

In regards to the separation anxiety, we are making some progress and have recently switched vets so we're getting some good support.
 
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