Monday, December 14, 2009

The Benefits of Doggie Daycare

By Suzanne Alicie

In this world there aren’t many families who are able to keep someone at home with the dog all the time. Dogs that are left alone at home every day for several hours can begin to exhibit bad behaviors as a result of loneliness and boredom. Doggie daycare is a solution many pet lovers are looking at to make sure their dogs are cared for and attended to when they have to go out to work and school. Doggie daycare is a wonderful alternative to crating or simply leaving the dog at home alone.

When it comes to choosing a doggie daycare for your four legged friend, your best bet is to check with your veterinarian for recommendations. Of course before you leave your dog you should spend some time at the daycare center to see how things work there.

Some of the things you should look at and ask about before leaving your dog in a doggie daycare are:

Cleanliness - A doggie daycare should not smell of dog waste or be dirty. Think of your dog daycare the same as you would a daycare for your child. Everything should be clean and neat, because not only is it unhealthy for the people there if it is unsanitary, but that is also a way for illnesses to spread between dogs.

Requirements - What medical requirements are needed to leave a dog at the center? Do they ask for vaccination records, vet information, and are they equipped to deal with dispensing medications or treatments to dogs who have non-contagious conditions? You don’t want to leave your dog where he could be exposed to dangerous conditions or not receive the care he may need.

Activities - What are the dogs doing at the doggie daycare? Are there toys, and do they get to interact with humans and other dogs? If your dog is going to be kept in a cage all day then there is no need to remove him from home.

Care Takers - Pay specific attention to the workers. Do they seem to genuinely enjoy working with dogs, or do they appear to be frazzled and short tempered? The worst thought for me is the idea of someone losing their temper and disciplining my dog unreasonably.

Many doggie daycare centers offer not only daycare but also sleepovers, parties, training and grooming services. Essentially you can take care of many different doggie challenges by choosing a good doggie daycare.

The cost for doggie daycare varies based upon the services offered, but for a general day visit you can expect to pay around $25. Doggie daycares usually offer a monthly fee that covers Monday through Friday, monthly grooming, and special rates on overnight stays and products, for around $400 per month. Families that have more than one dog should ask about discounts or special multi-dog rates.

If you choose a good dog daycare location there really aren’t any disadvantages to the service, except possibly the cost. However, it really depends on your dog how the experience turns out. A behavior assessment should be performed when you take your dog in so that the workers can determine if your dog is a good fit. Dogs who are aggressive and territorial when it comes to other dogs don’t usually do well in a dog daycare system. If your dog doesn’t thrive in a doggie daycare situation, then you need to re-evaluate and decide on another course of action for your dog during the day.

Read more articles by Suzanne Alicie

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