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Discussion Starter #1
I had my dog boarded at his daycare from the 14th - 20th of this month. The first half of his stay they said he was fine, he was just laying around a lot and then sun bathing when they were outside. On the 4th day he started getting cranky so they separated him from the other dogs to let him relax and keep his stress levels down. Then for the rest of the time he was boarded they had him by himself with some toys for the first half of the day, staff members would take turns playing with him, and then with a small group of dogs for the second half of the day and that seemed to work out well.

My dad was the one to drop him off and pick him up so I wasn't there for that but when I came home on friday night, his ears were down REALLY low and he was just mosying around, but by sunday he was back to his normal self again. I took him to daycare today and he seemed happy to be there.

Is it normal for a dog to get 'depressed' and cranky their first time being boarded? Oh, it's cage free boarding too, don't know if that makes a difference.
 

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What's "cage free" boarding?

Yes it can be normal for dogs to be a tired after boarding. My dogs always take 2-3 days to get back to thier playful selves. Boarding and vacations can be stressfull and/or tiresome for pets. As it is they're quite exausting for people, ever have a time when you needed a vacation after your vacation? If he's happy to return then you know there wasn't anything going on for you to worry about. It sounds like they took good care of him and made sure he was happy and not too overwhelmed by it all.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
cage free boarding is boarding without kennels. They have some crates there if that's what the dog/owner prefers for the dog to sleep in, but generally they just have a big open sleeping area, one for the big dogs and one for the small dogs.

He's not crate trained which is why the cage free boarding is appealing to me because i think if they stuck him in a kennel, which he's not used to, he would just be 10x more stressed about the situation.
 

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Sounds like your pup had a pretty normal time of it. Our dog comes home from boarding pretty exhausted and takes a couple of days to recuperate. I think it's just the stress of missing us and being stimulated by being around other dogs 24/7. The fact that they put your pup off by himself is a good sign that they were paying attention to him and not letting him get overwhelmed, as some dogs do in boarding.

I haven't noticed any difference with our dog when she was boarded cage free vs. kenneled - she's the same when we bring her home regardless. I think it depends on the dog's personality, though. Some dogs like the constant companionship of cage free, others don't.
 
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