7 Tips for Picking the Best Doggy Daycare for Your Dog

7 Tips for Picking the Best Doggy Daycare for Your Dog

Author WDF Staff


The reality of our modern lifestyle is that we simply can’t spend the whole day with our dogs. We have to go to work, socialize, visit family, and do all sorts of things that might not necessarily include our dogs. The COVID-19 pandemic slightly changed the situation for the better, at least for our dogs. They’re now used to having company 24/7 and might be a bit spoiled when it comes to staying home alone. That’s where doggy daycare comes into play.

What is doggy daycare?

If you’re looking for tips on picking the right doggy daycare for your dog, you probably already know what it is. However, for those of us who might not be as familiar with it as some are - doggy daycare is a place where you can leave your dog while you’re at work. They became very popular in the mid-90s. Some of the most significant advantages doggy daycares provide our dogs are companionship, a safe space to stay while you’re away, and mental and physical stimulation they need.

dogs playing

However, picking the right doggy daycare is absolutely crucial. You don’t want to end up leaving your dog somewhere unsafe. Dogs can escape the facility, or the service the daycare provides might not be adequate. You have to be careful when choosing the right doggy daycare for your dog. Luckily, World Dog Finder has plenty of experience with that. If you follow our tips for choosing the right doggy daycare, you will have a great place to leave your dog. Plus, your dog should be pretty happy to go there and socialize with their doggy friends. Here are our 7 tips for picking the right doggy daycare for your dog.

1. Visit the facility

Before leaving your dog at a doggy daycare, the first thing you should do is check out the facility. Some dog daycares advertise idyllic pictures and sceneries, but the reality can be different. You should look for facilities with solid fencing, proper ventilation, different play areas, and acclimatization areas. Another helpful thing will be if the facility has flooring that won’t cause dogs to slip and fall.

2. Ask for staffing numbers

The most important thing is that your dog has constant supervision. If there is a staff shortage, that supervision can become problematic. The International Boarding and Pet Care Services Association say the safety standard is a 15-to-1 ratio of dogs to staffers. That means that 1 staff member can look after 15 dogs at a time. However, that will depend on the dog’s size, activity, and overall temperament.

golden retrievers playing

3. Temperament test

Another important thing you should look for in doggy daycare facilities is a temperament test. They can take in a lot of dogs, and dog-aggressive dogs should be kept away from the general daycare population. It is simply safer for all involved if the doggy daycare performs temperament tests.

4. Look for grouping

The best doggy daycares have dog groups. For example, if you have a small and not really active Maltese, you wouldn’t want them in a group with playful, large dogs that might accidentally hurt your dog. The larger dogs don’t even have to be aggressive. They can simply knock a small dog over, step on them, or slam them while running. Look for doggy daycares that group dogs based on their size, age, or activity levels.

small dogs playing

5. Emergency plans

Another crucial safety feature a doggy daycare should have is a solid emergency plan. Imagine a scenario where a dog in their care gets bloat (gastric dilation volvulus). This is potentially a deadly medical emergency that will require a quick response. If the daycare doesn’t respond appropriately or the staff fails to recognize signs of bloat in dogs, the unlucky dog might not survive. Mind you, it is not the daycare’s fault a dog gets this condition. However, a quick and knowledgeable response might save the dog’s life.

6. Look for staff’s training

The tip number 5 and number 6 are connected. Emergency plans are usually not as important if you have a well-trained and experienced staff. The best doggy daycares have a staff that is trained in dog behavior. They can quickly notice signs of danger or potential issues arising. Plus, trained staff should know how to immediately help the dog in case of emergency, so trained staff can be considered as an emergency plan.

puppies playing

7. Playtime and rest time

Your dog might be very active or a bit less active. No matter their activity level, they will need quality rest after a session of vigorous playing. You have to ask the doggy daycare what their policy regarding that is. Do they provide dogs with a safe time to rest so they don’t get over exhausted or even dehydrated? Some daycares have a policy where they simply keep dogs in a safe area and allow the dog to determine for itself when they need rest or water. We prefer the first one.

Which doggy daycare should you pick?

After you asked all the right questions and found out all the things you have to find out, the only thing left to do is pick the doggy daycare. After you eliminate the ones that don’t provide the service you want, you should choose the one that remains as the best possible option. You should feel happy about the place where you leave your dog, and your dog should be excited to go there.

World Dog Finder team

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