1. What happens during a day at daycare? A Dog's Dream Daycare opens at 7 a.m. Dogs may check in at anytime. If possible, we like to have reservations a day in advance but we understand that this is not always possible. At check-in, the dog's belongings (leashes, treats, etc.) are placed in their own cubby. The morning is spent playing with toys, chasing games, doggie bubbles and more. We have a large run in the backyard of our facility. On warm days we have having wading pools available for pups that want to puddle around in them. We take frequent trips outside, but when the temp is high, we keep the outside time short so the dogs don't overheat. Dogs that stay for a full day nap from noon to 1 or 2 p.m. Music and aromatherapy soothes dogs during this time. Naps for daycare dogs are important to prevent them from becoming over tired and/or sick. Scheduled baths and grooming take place from 1 to 2 p.m. Afternoon activities include more playing, but also more one-on-one time with staff members who cuddle, massage and brush the pups. Dogs may be picked up anytime during the day. Crates may be used for dogs that need a time-out, or dogs that won't stop to rest on their own.
2. Can I see the facility where my dog will be staying? Yes! We'd be happy to show you around.
3. How can I be sure the facility is clean? Stop in and see! We clean the entire facility daily. the floors are scrubbed mid-day while the dogs nap and again at the end of the day. We spot clean the floors throughout the day as needed. In addition, the cages are cleaned and disinfected daily, along with bedding and toys. The outside area is cleaned and disinfected, as well.
4. Is there a thorough check of background, behavior and health of all dogs at daycare? Yes! We record a complete history of all dogs attending daycare.
5. How knowledgeable is the staff? Staff members are trained in animal behavior and animal first aid.
6. How are corrections and praise administered, and how are fights avoided? Staff members intervene when dogs show even the most subtle sign of aggression, giving the dog(s) a time-out for a few minutes. While our goal is prevention of fights, we are prepared to handle conflicts with noise makers, spray bottles, and citronella spray if necessary.
7. Do you offer obedience training? We don't currently offer obedience classes but staff members are happy to help with behavior and obedience issues at the request of the owner. We use positive reinforcement to train the basics - sit, stay, down, leave it, come, quiet, etc.
8. Are the dogs supervised at all times? Yes! When playing off-lease, the dogs are supervised at all times.
9. How are new dogs introduced? Slowly. We would never want to put your pooch in an uncomfortable position so we start by introducing the new dog to one of our more mellow attendees and gauging reaction. If that goes well, we bring in another dog and continue until the newbie has been successfully integrated into the play group most appropriate for that particular dog.
10. Is is noisy at daycare? Actually, much of the day, the dogs are quiet. We don't allow consistent barking as this can cause aggressive behavior. If you watch our Web site videos, you'll notice (on those without a music background) that the dogs play quite quietly.
11. What services do you offer? Daycare, boarding, grooming, pet photography, bathing, special needs (i.e. administration of medication).
12. Do all size dogs play together? No. Dogs are separated by size, energy level and play styles. Occasionally, we'll have an exception with an elderly dog or very mellow large dog who simply does better with the smaller dogs. This is rare, and staff members fully evaluate these dogs before they are allowed amongst the smaller dogs.
13. What are the requirements for attendees? Completion of enrollment forms; passage of a behavior assessment during the dog's first day; proof of vaccinations for rabies, distemper/parvo & bordetella; dogs six months or older must be neutered/spayed; and, dogs must be at least 12 weeks old.
14. Do dogs have time to rest during the day? Yes! It's important for dogs to have some down time. Many of the dogs naturally lay down mid-day to rest for one to two hours. During this time, we play soothing music and offer calming aromatherapy. Dogs that don't rest on their own are crated to ensure they have some rest time as well.
15. How often do the dogs go outside? Many times during the day, usually at least a half-dozen times. We have a large fenced run where the dogs can run and play, complete with toys for climbing and chasing, and wading pools to keep them cool.
16. How many dogs are at daycare each day? We average 15 dogs per day.
17. What happens if a dog gets sick or injured during daycare or while boarding? If there is an illness, the owner is contacted immediately and the dog is quarantined until the owner can take him home. For a serious injury or illness, the owner is contacted immediately and daycare staff transports the dog to the nearest veterinarian, which is Harborside Animal Clinic on Davis Blvd. The staff is trained in pet first aid and can handle minor scratches and bumps. If your dog sustains a minor injury at daycare, he will be treated and you will be informed of the injury when you arrive to pick up your dog. It is not uncommon for some dogs to arrive at daycare so excited that they may vomit or have diarrhea. Again, our staff members are trained to gauge the dog's health and determine whether the dog is actually ill or simply overly excited. If we determine excitement is causing the problem, we encourage the dog to rest for a short period of time. A staff member sits with them, offering a soothing massage until they are calm.
18. Are there toys, bedding and other pet supplies? It's a dog's dream! There are enough supplies, toys and bedding for everyone.
19. What do I need to bring for my dog for daycare or boarding? We have everything your dog may need for daycare. We don't recommend bringing toys as they may be damaged by the other dogs at daycare. For boarding dogs, please bring your pup's food in an airtight container. We like to keep their diet the same while you are gone to prevent any digestive trouble. As with daycare dogs, you can also bring treats (no chewy treats that take a long time to eat).
20. Where do dogs stay when they board? Boarding dogs stay in our play areas. At bedtime, dogs from different families are separated, either by rooms or in crates.