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Sunday, September 22, 2013

Doggie Daycare Do's and Don'ts

Since I work at a doggie daycare, I've put together this list of helpful reminders...

Don't outfit your dog in a harness that has five straps, a strip of velcro, a clasp with a loop, and a combination lock that takes 15 minutes to put on at the end of the day when he is trying to jump over the gate to be with you.

Do put your dog in a slip lead or a leash that clips to his collar. It makes wrangling your squirmy dog easier.

Don't give us food for your dog at drop off, tell us to feed him at 5:00, pick him up at 5:05 and get mad because he hasn't been fed yet. 

Do understand that we could be feeding anywhere from 10-50 boarding dogs at the same time.

Don't be surprised if your dog is wet or dirty at pick up time. Dogs play. And they step in poop and slide in pee that we were just about to mop. We're quick, but we're not always as quick as running dogs.

Do schedule your dog for a bath before you pick them up and they'll be nice and clean.

Don't feel bad if your dog is asked not to come back because of fighting. It's not his fault. Not all dogs can tolerate so many dogs, and we have to keep everyone safe.  Also, we're very tolerant, so rest assured he's been given plenty of chances before this decision has been made.

Don't be mad if your dog gets bit or hurts a paw or leg. These guys PLAY HARD and CHASE and RUN FAST! We know these are your "children," but even children get hurt at daycare.

Do talk to the manager or staff about any injury as soon as you notice.  We don't see everything that happens, but if we can give you any insight into the incident, we'll tell you. what we know. Try your best to be understanding…accidents happen.

Don't forget to tell us at morning drop off that your puppy may have eaten something he shouldn't have. So later - when he vomits up a whole mouse, tail and all, or a 5-inch piece of leather belt - we won't be quite so shocked. (Yes, it really happened.)

Don't tell us that in order for your dog to pee or poop we must command him to do so with separate cutesy words for each.  He's a dog; I'm sure he'll figure it out if he has to "go." 

Don't call and ask if we can keep your deceased mother's two 2-year-old dogs at our facility until they die because it was in her will that you keep them and you don't want to.  (Yep, they did. And no we wouldn't.)

Don't board with us for a week your 13-year-old, blind, deaf dog who can't stand up to relieve himself and who should have been humanely euthanized weeks ago. But because you're in denial, we have to call your vet, and you get mad because your vacation is cut short.

If you have to board your dog for a month or more due to a housing situation, please visit him periodically so he doesn't think he's been abandoned. We do try to give these guys extra love, but they're still confused and sad.

Don't bring in your bigger-than-a house-sized 
St. Bernard for a bath and come back 
an hour later expecting him to be ready.

Do bring blankets and/or a dog bed for your dog when boarding, which you're told on the phone when scheduling. Otherwise, your dog sleeps on concrete. There's no way we could provide beds for every dog. Also don't be embarrassed to send with your dog any favorite toys, bones, night-time snacks, or a t-shirt with your scent on it. These are comforting to your dog, and we love it when you care! It's sad when we see one dog come in with a bed, blanket, t-shirt, toys and treats and another dog come in with nothing. 

*Names of dogs have been withheld in order to protect the not so innocent. All stories told here are true...I couldn't make this stuff up.


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