Dogs are social animals. In the wild, dogs live together in packs which give them the protection and social structure in which they are most likely to prosper. Dogs are so social that it is not uncommon for them to experience what can only be called as fear of abandonments when they are left alone, without the company of their loved ones.
If you are a dog owner, and have stepped out of your house for longer than usual, your beloved four-legged friend could be experiencing stress right now. If you have ever come back home after a long absence and found chewed up toys, pillows, pieces of furniture, toys or your four-year-old favorite teddy bear, then your dog, in all likelihood, did not like being left alone. Stress is a serious issue as it can lead to health and behavioral complications and yet, this particular kind of stress is an easy one to overcome. How? By ensuring that your dog has company.
There are two solutions available to you should you decide to prevent your dog from feeling lonely next time you leave your house. The first solution, and a favorite of many pet owners is to hire a qualified and local pet sitter who will act as a surrogate parent during your absence and will come to your house in order to look after your dog.
Another solution is to take your dog to your local Doggy Day Care center and let him (or her) enjoy the company of other dogs and humans so that she (or he) may have a day full of fun and excitement.
If you are considering the second option, of course you must first make sure that your dog is indeed a friendly animal who likes the company of other dogs. A walk down your local dog park where other dogs are having fun will quickly let you know how comfortable sharing spaces with other dogs, your own dog really is.
The benefits of a well-run dog day care
Owners of some of these facilities like to refer to their centers as camps, much like the camps you and I would go to when we were kids. In fact, this concept is so accurate that dogs are sometimes referred to as campers. The reason for this is that these camps are designed to be safe and friendly and to provide an atmosphere in which the animals can have fun.
Of course, when there are camps and campers, there are also camp leaders, trained in dog behavior and first aid!!!
The requirements of a dog day care
Dogs must be well behaved, non-aggressive, neutered or spayed and up to date with their vaccinations.
Most of these facilities operate from 7 am to 7 pm and prices vary from facility to facility.
If you consider leaving your dog at such a facility, here are some questions you might want to ask:
- Is the facility a member of the Pet Care Service Association
- What do they do in case of bad weather
- How do they handle emergencies?
- Do they have webcams access?
Of course, there are times when you will need to leave your dog for more than a day, in which case a dog boarding arrangement can be an excellent bet.. These private boarding facilities are designed to provide 24-hour care for your pets in the loving home of a pet sitter.
It goes without saying that we, as pet owners would always prefer to be able to take our pets with us when we go on vacation. Unfortunately, the reality is that this is not always possible. In some case it is not even a recommendation we can give, particularly if your pet is known to be extremely anxious about travelling.
But if your animal is of the right temperament, and If you’ve done your homework in selecting the right doggy day care, then in all likelihood, your dog will thank you for it.