According to a survey by The Good Kennel Guide more than half of the nation’s licensed boarding kennels say that if things continue as they are they will be forced out of business within the next few months, with the easing of restrictions on travel abroad expected on May 17 coming too late for many businesses.
Sarah Harrison, founder of The Good Kennel Guide, said: “We are calling on the Government and local authorities to look again at the support that our hardworking, experienced, licensed boarding kennels and catteries need now.
"We have heard so many heartbreaking stories from businesses that have either had to close, lay off staff or are shutting their doors permanently in some cases.
"Kennels have been forced to stay open during the pandemic and provide a vital service with very little recognition and have even been refused support.
"If we lose boarding kennel businesses, we’ll be left with a surge of animals being left at home, dumped, or being sent to animal rescue centres. It might also mean that there is an uptick in illegal and unlicensed animal boarding.
"Both of these factors put the lives and welfare of animals genuinely at risk."
It was reported by 98 per cent of kennels that bookings had drastically decreased with many saying that bookings had entirely collapsed.
Su Carlin, proprietor of the Sunnymead Kennels & Cattery at Walcot, near Telford, said: "Within Shropshire several kennels and catteries are up for sale and others are just about hanging on.
"The prospect of the easing of lockdown is not giving us a feeling of imminent recovery as people seem to be extremely cautious about booking holidays, both in this country and overseas."