Dog Daycare is an organized, controlled and monitored environment in which a group of friendly dogs, from multiple families, can interact and play throughout the day in an enclosed building or yard. This is a situation foreign to most dogs - strange dogs allowed to play together with constant variations of dogs, weather, and individuals.
An acceptance policy should be in place that includes temperament evaluation and/or testing for general appropriateness for daycare and to screen for inappropriate and/or aggressive behavior by an individual skilled in temperament assessment.
There is no Lassie, not all dogs are meant to be in a daycare situation. Assessment by a knowledgeable individual is critical for it to work for all concerned. That includes recognizing and advising an owner that their dog might not be suited for daycare or has no longer become a dog suited for daycare as it matured.
Daycare is not the place for truly dog aggressive dogs to learn to behave. It is however, a good place to start with a knowledgeable facility and a young puppy to help redirect the potential of aggression when managed properly. It could also be the right place for a dog who is territorial on leash but not off as well as some other acceptions. Have your dog assessed for TRUE dog-dog aggression to determine the difference and if your dog could learn to play without threatening his or other dogs' well-being.
Staff supervising playgroups are trained in group dog behavior and appropriate dog play and willing to communicate honestly with the owners regarding any issues their own dogs might have that need work.
Playgroups are properly supervised and adequate space provided for number of dogs accepted. Proper space would be defined as a minimum of 50 unencumbered sq. ft per small dog, and 75-100 unencumbered sq. ft. per medium to large dog.
Clean facility that is sterilized against communicable diseases on a predictable schedule. Fresh air or a filtered air system help minimize diseases.
Health requirements for acceptance. Checking the background health of a dog is essential to minimize disease transmission. Pawsitive requires canine cough vaccine annually along with fecal testing for parasites and Giardia. Pawsitive believes this helps minimize the risk of infection and frequently reviews protocol with consulting veterinarians. NOTE: Canine Cough vaccine should be given at least 10 days prior to any daycare or boarding. Any less that that time frame and your dog can be a carrier and more susceptible as well.
Veterinary relationships. It is important that the facility have a trusting relationship with at least one vet for consults and emergency care. Pawsitive has a working relationship with multiple vets in Erie County and is your pet’s voice while in our care. We use the same ruler used for the house dogs to determine if a vet visit is required for any reason.
Day’s Schedule. Predictability and consistency is important to a dog. Pawsitive stops all incoming dogs at 10am so the dogs in place know what the rest of the day holds for them. The dogs nap predictably from 12-2 (some exceptions) and then play until pick-up.
Safety (Physical and Health). Double gates at every entrance/exit are recommended to reduce the chance of escape or entry into an area the dog should not be playing in, or a group they should not be with. Cleaning supplies used are dog safe but work to kill the majority of viruses and contagions. Locks are on cabinets in playroom to prevent access. Crates and floors are cleaned and inspected daily. All surfaces and bowls for feeding and water are sanitized regularly.