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I used to have to board a cocker spaniel. It isn't a great choice, but if that is the only avenue then your puppy will be ok. They don't put the dogs together, each has its own run. I used to have to pay extra for walks. I would doubt that they will brush your baby unless you pay extra for that. Be warned - they stink when you get them back. I had them groom the cocker before we picked her up. You might expect a regression on potty training when you first return home.

A couple of other thoughts for you: what about a pet sitting service? The ones in my area charge approx. $12 per visit and stay about 1/2 hour. If they came 3 times a day how would that compare to the price of the kennel? That would only work it your puppy is gated, rather than crated, and uses the pee pads.

For next year I would suggest that you find a friend with a small dog and start socializing the dogs and then trade off - you take the friend's dog for a week when they have to be gone, and they take your dog at Christmas. Also, if you have a single friend or even older high school student maybe you could work something out with them. In fact, maybe you and someone else on this board who lives in South Florida could get together and start trading.

We are taking our whole family, including grandparents, on a trip to Vegas the weekend before Christmas. Our usual sitters (the daughters and grandparents) will be with us so my younger daughter's roommate at college will come and stay at my house and care for the two dogs. I am paying $75 a day for this, but truthfully would pay more if necessary.
 
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