Dog Boarding Kennels

MRT 8 February 2010 37

As new dog owners who also enjoy weekends in national parks and with non dog people, we are looking around for kennels to leave out dog for the occasional weekend and while on holidays.

Does anyone have any recommendations for dog boarding kennels in Canberra area or between Canberra and the coast?

What's Your Opinion?

Please login to post your comments, or connect with
37 Responses to Dog Boarding Kennels
BMoore BMoore 12:17 pm 18 Feb 17

Has anyone used Cherryburn kennels?

eminem13211 eminem13211 1:54 pm 20 Dec 14

My 2 dogs have a wonderful time every time they go to Tara Boarding Kennels in Pialligo. The kennels are big and they get to run around with other friendly dogs. The staff members are lovely and are always interested in all their pets and keep an eye on them individually. I will certainly stay with them again

december december 2:12 pm 28 Sep 11

Hi all, have anyone heard of a dog kennel at Collector called “Langlord Kennels”? Any comment? Many thanks..

justadog justadog 8:55 pm 02 Jun 11

I took my dog to Reedy Creek,he came back full of grass seeds and as a result i had a huge vet bill.The all got infected and he had to be shaved. he was in a terrible way for weeks and weeks.The owners did not give a damm.

alison alison 4:07 pm 23 May 11

I agree with Helen re Barton Hwy Dog’otel .I had my [healthy] dog there for 2 weeks and she came out with a bladder infection,something she never had before or since.[[I was told by my favourite kennel owner that this can be caused by hosing out kennels with dogs still in them]She goes to these wonderful kennels in Victoria twice a year for 3 1/2 weeks to 5 1/2 weeks and is happy and healthy due to good care and daily socialisation every day with other dogs at no extra cost.I have also had bad experiences with Tara,Red Hill and especially Bendora Thankfully she was only there for 3 nights as she came out bleeding from the bowel which was not remarked on when I picked her up

kcj kcj 8:39 pm 31 Oct 10

I found Sonza through a new site they seem pretty friendly.

kevwana kevwana 11:02 am 02 Oct 10

I have a staffy which I have housed numerous times at Sonzas. She has been there between 4-7 times anyway bewteen one night to 10 days. The facilities are clean and well kept, and the staff friendly. You can tell they dont see it as just a job but they like their work. The added bonus is of course that they are also a vet, so I feel secure that any illness or ailment would be quickly recognised and dealt with.

Highly Recommended

Con – a little bit out of the way. Then again so what when you feel at ease knowing they are in good care.


howaka howaka 8:49 pm 11 Feb 10

go camping with your pet… go to Wee Jasper – great camping spots, cheap and pet friendly!

beer beer 4:19 pm 11 Feb 10

try these guys:

they looked after our dog while we went down the coast to get married in Nov. was very happy with their service…

Helen Helen 11:18 am 11 Feb 10

We went back over the years purely because Best Friend was 5 minutes drive from home – and in the various emergency situations we’ve had over the years, they have been the most convenient kennels for us. We didn’t go back several times a year, it was on average 5 years between visits. Plus we wanted to give them some extra chances – people can change after all. I’m not saying they can’t look after animals properly, they are just so rude, disorganised and expensive that I would steer people away from their services.

And yes, I did know that dogs can get diabetes – so can cats.

TroyWilliams TroyWilliams 10:12 am 11 Feb 10

I wouldn’t recommend Best Friend in Macgregor – numerous bad experiences over the years. They’re very difficult to deal with, especially if you have to go away at short notice.

Couldn’t disagree more! Incidentially, if you had a bad experience why go back ‘over the years’?

When I was living in Canberra I was often away on business for a few days to a few weeks at a time when interstate or overseas – often leaving at short notice. The guys at Best Friends always accommodated my dog and were comfortable giving her the insulin injections twice a day (bet you didn’t know dogs can get diabetes).

For one, I’m happy to recommend Best Friends.

NeedHelp NeedHelp 9:07 am 11 Feb 10

As a former long-time employee of a kennel and cattery, I am in a position to give you a run-down on what goes on.

We had three hours each day to do the following for hundreds of dogs:

1. Remove faeces and take it to the back of the property;
2. Hose the floor of up to 6 buildings;
3. Hose the bedding for each dog;
3. Prepare the food and give each dog the same thing – unless of course they were on a special diet;
4. Place water into their bowls. River water was used.
5. Medicate them as needed.

I never walked or played with a dog in the time I was there – time just didn’t allow it on weekends especially, but I did give them loads of comfort cuddles when the ‘boss’ wasn’t watching.

The cats have pretty much the same routine, with more attention paid to scrubbing the walls of their cubicles. Beware though, if the staff member uses too much chemical, it can burn the cat’s feet, so ask questions about this. We had up to 100 cats at any one time.

Please, ask a LOT of questions when you decide to pay for added extras such as “walking” or “playtime”, or “washing”. Also, please ask a LOT of questions relating to the 1st class accommodation you think you are getting. The number of times I was asked to move dogs to the standard accommodation after they were booked into 1st class accommodation was disturbing.

Also, if more people demanded to actually see where the dogs live, it would open some eyes to the reality of kennels. IF you see any green grass/yard area, but are refused entry to the other areas, please demand to go down there – nobody is allowed down there but staff, animals, and maintenance people. Ever wondered why?

The ‘ambiance’ of the kennels includes heavy metal doors, plastic dog beds, darkness, loud air conditioning units that have seen better days, wetness, stink, faeces, barking, urine, and a lot of very sad dogs.

I am not saying they are all like this, but the one where I worked certainly was although in general they were pretty good. Next time you choose to leave your dog at the kennels, DEMAND to see EVERY AREA, even if you bring your own gumboots. If they say no, ask for reasons as to why.

It’s tough, back-breaking work, but the time limits that are placed on staff actually performing their jobs was a little ridiculous. Christmas time, when the place was full, we would only get three hours on a weekend to do all the above. Paying the staff more, and allowing them to work up to 4 or 5 hours was not an option. I worked 7 days a week most weeks, and managed to lose 12 kilos. I am sure that these time limits do not apply to every kennels or cattery out there – they are all different.

If you can – please, please please, get a reliable friend or neighbour to look after your animal – in the comfort of their own surroundings.

Pandy Pandy 6:34 am 11 Feb 10

DSV_Twig, it looks like you had some legal dealings with Tara about your lost pet. Am i right?

Helen Helen 4:49 pm 10 Feb 10

LG said :

Helen said :

I wouldn’t recommend Best Friend in Macgregor – numerous bad experiences over the years. They’re very difficult to deal with, especially if you have to go away at short notice.

I disagree. We’ve only ever had great experienced with best friends since we started using 4+ years ago. Very friendly and helpful. More importantly, the dog loves it there.

My parents started using Best Friend over 20 years ago when they first moved into the Belconnen area. We have used them on and off since then. The last time we used their services was in 2008 when a family member died and we had to travel interstate at short notice. Best Friend were the only kennels in the area that could take our dog. We had to drop the dog off outside of opening hours and happily paid the extra fee that entailed. Our problem was that although we had organised the dropoff time the day beforehand, when I arrived at the kennels I had to wait for half an hour for someone to come to the door and take the dog. I was ringing the doorbell, calling the phone and getting no answer for 25mins – the person who finally answered had no idea what was happening. As I had a plane to catch this was very frustrating.

I agree that it is very important that your dog likes the kennels – and obviously different dogs and different people are going to have different experiences. But if you don’t get “good vibes” (for lack of a better term) from the people who run the kennel, would you really trust them to look after your dog?

DSV_Twig DSV_Twig 11:15 am 10 Feb 10

I would stay away from Tara. Far, far away.

Unfortunately, for legal reasons I cannot go into detail, however they also “lost” our pet.

pug206gti pug206gti 9:27 am 10 Feb 10

There’s Sonza Kennels & Cattery (5893 Kings Hwy via, Queanbeyan – (02) 6238 1132) just near the Defence site this side of Bungendore. Had my bundle of joy desexed there for a good price and facilities looked fine, although I’ve no experience with the kennels. Convenient for the coast though in any event.

GuruJ GuruJ 10:50 pm 09 Feb 10

If you like the idea of getting your dog looked after in a house, and are happy to put in a little extra effort, you can’t go past Don’t Fret Pet.

Normally the registered sitters have other pets, so it’s almost a holiday as much for your dog as it is for you. It’s not cheap by comparison, but I think well worth it!

ps ps 7:51 pm 09 Feb 10

We have friends who have used Reedy Creek (Canberra side of Braidwood) many times and on their recommendation we used it ourselves for our 2 dogs. People pay thousands for a farm-stay experience – our dogs got it for a fraction of a fraction of that price! The dogs get sorted into suitable groups for runs around the secure paddocks. The enclosures are spacious with heated cement pads. Suggest though you take old doggie bedding with you rather than any expensive bedding as it (and the dogs) may show signs of the enjoyment had in all the farm dirt and farm smells.

Most of all our extremely prec(oc)ious dogs were very happy and healthy when we picked them up. The owners are genuinely friendly and clearly care for their charges.

dubious75 dubious75 4:16 pm 09 Feb 10

We used to use Canberra Boarding Kennels but for our last trip north we check our two into Rovers Retreat ( We were very impressed with them. They accomodation is a good as if not better than the ‘executive’ suites at Canberra Boarding Kennels (minus the TV) and it’s half the price. There is no additional fees for activities either. It’s a fair way out but they do have a collection service. We’ll definitely be taking them back there.

54-11 54-11 2:44 pm 09 Feb 10

It’s pretty clear that some people’s experiences (and expectations) are different to others. Perhaps we sometimes forget that they are animals after all.

Like CK, I’ve used both Tara and Bendora without too many problems and would go back to either of them again. I think that’s one of the few times I’ve agreed with CK’s opinion – perhaps I need to review!

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Region Group Pty Ltd

Search across the site