How to Choose the Right Dog Daycare
Choosing the right dog daycare for your pup isn’t as easy as running your fingers down the “yellow pages”, and where it stops is the one you choose. There’s a lot more to it than that…especially if you care about your dog the way that I do. My dog is very important to me and I want the best for him, one where he’ll be happy and well cared for.
It all begins when you come to the conclusion that it would be best for your dog. That can be a tough decision, but when you think of your dog being home alone for many hours at a time whether it’s because of work, travel or anything else, the decision becomes obvious when you realize…
There are benefits for both you and your dog:
- Your dog is social, and will be with new canine friends and humans rather than being stressed and anxious when you walk out the door. No more boredom or separation anxiety.
- No more coming home, wondering what Fido did today in your absence.
- There will be plenty of exercise and activity to keep your dog entertained.
- Your dog won’t have to “hold it” for several hours.
- No more hours on end in the kennel.
- You won’t feel guilty for leaving your dog home alone.
So how can you choose the day care that is right for your dog?
- One place to begin is to ask for referrals from your vet, pet stores, groomers or friends who are already using these facilities.
- Definitely visit the day care center (unannounced if possible) – things to look for would be:
- Is it clean and organized? Are there unpleasant, lingering odors?
- Are there plenty of toys and activities for the dogs?
- Are there separate resting and play areas.
- Are there more dogs than there is space?
- Are the dogs given not only time for play but time for rest?
- Are the dogs taken for potty breaks?
- Are the dogs ever left unattended?
- Is there a flea policy?
- Is fresh clean water readily available?
- If necessary will the staff feed your dog a special diet or give medication?
- Check the screening process to make sure all dogs are licensed, vaccinated, socialized, spayed or neutered. This is basically to insure that the risks to your dogs are minimal.
- Check out the staff:
- First and foremost, do they love the animals they’re in charge of? Are they kind and affectionate?
- Are they well trained? Do they know animal first aid procedures?
- Do they know and understand dog’s behavior patterns and body language?
- How many humans are on duty to manage the dogs? There should always be a minimum of at least 2, preferably 1 person for every 10 – 15 dogs.
- Extras that are a bonus:
- Some daycare facilities do grooming.
- Some offer pick up or drop off services.
- Some have pools for your dog to exercise and enjoy.
It all boils down to Caring, Cleanliness and Safety.
If you live in the Bothell Washington area, I can recommend BowWow Fun Towne, a great daycare/boarding facility. The staff is well trained and caring, there is plenty to occupy even the busiest dog (they even have a full sized swim pool), they do grooming, have dog training classes available and will make sure your dog is well taken care of.
***All images courtesy of BowWow Fun Towne
If you need to use a Doggie Daycare, you should be sure your dog is well socialized. One of the smartest things you can do is enroll your dog in some training classes where trained professionals will be able to help give your dog the training he/she needs.
At Pawsitive Steps Dog Training, our training techniques are based around one simple question:
What do you want and expect from your dog?
We believe that the most effective method of dog training revolves around teaching your dog what you want them to do, how to behave, how to act in their environment, and what appropriate behaviors are under given circumstances and situations. Check out our Family Friendly Training Classes.