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The warmest of welcomes, the happiest of times - our host families are the heart of home-from-home pet care.



Q. What is home-from-home pet care?

A. Home-from-home pet care is an alternative to boarding kennels or conventional pet sitting. Instead of pet owners sending their dogs to a kennel or having a stranger attend their home to pride dog sitting, we arrange ‘dog holidays’ where their dog goes to stay with a local loving host family.


Q. Who are Hounds On Holiday hosts?

A. Many of our hosts are active retired people who miss the exercise and companionship but do not wish to commit full-time to the emotional and financial responsibility of dog ownership. Others are dog owners who are looking for company for their own family pet. All of them, without exception, are genuine dog lovers who have met our strict criteria.


Q. How do you select the host families?

A. First we ask prospective hosts a series of questions in a phone interview to determine if they qualify. Next, we personally visit each host family at their home. We conduct a second phase interview of the candidate, inspect their home and yard, and answer their questions. All our hosts are home full time. We select only those people to whom we would entrust our own dogs.


Q. As a Host Family for Hounds On Holiday, what do I do if someone asks me to look after his or her dog?

A. Explain that you are a host family for Hounds On Holiday, and that a home visit needs to be carried out by us to assess the dog’s temperament and home life routine. Take the customer’s details and pass them on to us, or ask the customer to contact us directly. Do not accept any pets that have not been checked by Hounds On Holiday, as you will not be insured or have any back up should problems arise.


Q. Do we get to meet the customer?

A. No, we prepare a host profile complete with photographs; describing in general terms a little about you and your pet care experience. Customers are able to read host profiles, but for security reasons we never divulge your full name, address or phone number. Equally we do not pass on customer’s details to any of our host families.


Q. Do I have to pick up the pet?

A. No. Our experience has taught us that dogs settle much more quickly if we collect them from the customer’s home and deliver them directly to their host family home. We also deliver the pet to its home at the end of its vacation.


Q. Do I supply the pet food?

A. No, our pet owners provide everything you will need to care for their pet throughout its stay; including food, bed, toys, treats and other favourite things to help them feel at home. You should feed the pet as per their feeding routine on the pet schedule provided.


Q. What happens if the pet becomes ill or injured? Do I take it to the vet?

A. No, we have all veterinary details on file. If a pet becomes ill you should contact Hounds On Holiday immediately, and we will make arrangements with the pet's own vet. Only in cases of emergency should you take the pet to the closest vet. You will be provided with more detailed information in this regard, in the pet schedule provided.


Q. Can I let dogs off-leash?

A. You must follow the guidelines for walking as instructed on the pet schedule form. If dogs are used to walking off the lead, it is advisable to practice re-call in the garden at home for a day or two before attempting to walk off the lead in a public area.


Q. Is it necessary for dogs to wear a collar?

A. Yes, all dogs are tagged with our contact details, in case they happen to stray or become lost.


Q. What to do if a dog goes missing?

A. Do not panic. Call Hounds on Holiday immediately, and we will make contact with the local humane society and other necessary personnel.


Q. Do I need to keep my own dog vaccinated and treated against fleas, ticks and worms?

A. Yes, you must do so - it is good practice. Similarly, the customer will be required to do so as per their signed contract.