Are you considering a doggy daycare for your pup? Perhaps your work schedule is calling for some backup care, or your pet's personality seeks additional socialization and engagement. Doggy daycare serves not only as peace of mind for busy pet owners, but also as an outlet for high energy dogs to play and interact -- regular socialization is so important for dogs! Whatever the case, it is important to keep some key factors in mind when touring and selecting a care setting for your dog. Here are seven of the ones we feel are most important. They will help you choose the best doggy daycare in Austin, or wherever you reside!
- Health Protocols. Make sure to select a doggy daycare that requires your pet to have obtained certain vaccinations and a clean bill of health from the vet. This will ensure that your dog is around other healthy pups.
- Emergency Vet Care. If something were to occur with your pup, does the daycare have a vet or vet assistant on staff? Or is there a quick way to transfer your pet to his or her veterinarian? This is a great question to ask when you're touring.
- Proper Supervision. Just like childcare centers have ratios and levels of care to strive for when caring for children, a good doggy daycare setting will make sure there aren't too many pups to one supervisor. If you have a small dog that is intimidated by larger dogs, consider seeking a facility that separates dogs by size.
- Open Communication. Does the facility have cameras where you can pop in and check on your pup whenever you want to? Do you get a rundown of your dog's day when you pick him up? If there is a problem, is the staff prompt about communicating with you? These are all factors to consider when selecting a doggy daycare.
- Trial Day. It's always a great idea to select a doggy daycare that requires a trial day where they evaluate your dog's temperament and behavior with other dogs. This shows you that the facility prioritizes the safety of the dogs in their care. It's also a great idea to have your dog stay for a few hours before you commit to purchasing a package so you can see if there are any negative changes when she comes home.
- Cleanliness and Safety of Facility. When you tour the doggy daycare, make sure that everything is clean and well-kept. You also don't want any potentially harmful or hazardous materials near the pets. If your dog will be staying the night, take a peek at where the dogs stay when they're boarded. Are they in cages? Do they have a comfortable, temperature controlled room?
- Observe the Staff. It is important to choose a facility that employs dog lovers. If the staff members are rough with the dogs, you want to stay away. Make sure you choose a business that will love your dog and dote on her while you're gone.
Remember that every pet and pet owner are unique and will have different requirements when it comes to seeking a doggy daycare. Regardless, these seven factors discussed above should be at the forefront of your mind when you are touring and selecting a doggy daycare for your pup. Whether you are seeking the best doggy daycare in Austin or any surrounding area, it's a great idea to bring a checklist and ensure that the facility is what you're seeking.
About the Author: Jessica is an East Coast girl recently transplanted to Austin, Texas where she lives with her husband, their three human children, and their rescue fur baby. She is an OB Nurse Educator by background, but has worked as a freelance writer, content manager, and brand strategist for the past few years and loves every minute of it. You can follow her on her personal blog or Instagram profile.