Doggie Day Care can be an important part of a dog’s socialization and exercise. It can also be super convenient for dog owners who need to board their dog while on vacation or at work. It can be a real necessity for dog owners who don’t have a yard.
But not all dogs do well in day care and they may be asked to leave. It happens. Dog breeds enjoy different forms of play and some may be considered too enthusiastic for day care. So, what do you do if your dog gets “the boot?”
- Don’t Panic. Your dog otherwise behaves well, is great with your family and other dogs, he just doesn’t do well in daycare. There is nothing wrong with your dog. Some dogs just don’t like day care.
- Look for a different day care. Just because this day care wasn’t a fit, doesn’t mean there’s not a day care that will work. Different breeds and temperaments enjoy different forms of play.
- Try a dog park. Some dogs only need to run around and play for twenty or thirty minutes. After that, they tire and can get cranky. Being in a daycare for several hours might just be too much for them. A short trip to the dog park with their favorite human may be all the interaction they need.
- Schedule a doggie play date. Do you have a friend with a similar-sized or twin-tempered pup? Set up a play date in the back yard. Your dogs get exercise and socialization, while you can catch up over coffee.
- Try a dog walker or sitter. Lots of dogs prefer the comfort and privacy of lounging in their own home. If you’re out for the day, your pup might simply need someone to come by and give them a walk to take care of business and make sure everything is okay and then back snoozing on their favorite rug.
- Move on. Maybe your dog simply doesn’t like day care, and there’s nothing you can do to change that. Robin Bennett, a renowned dog trainer says, “Far too often we try to force our pets into environments they may not like. And when we do, the dog suffers.”Not every dog likes off-leash play.
Dogs have their own personalities and needs. If your dog experiences daycare issues, it might be a setback, but it doesn’t have to be a huge problem. Think of it as an opportunity to get to know your dog better and find a more suitable situation for your dog. For example, I have a bulldog. She can be overly focused on one dog and not get the hint that the dog doesn’t want to play with her. It doesn’t always go over well. They’re called bullies, after all. When one daycare couldn’t handle her, I was upset and thought it was the end of daycare for my pup. A few days later, I found a new daycare that understands the needs of bulldogs (they have eleven who visit regularly). They also are a few miles closer and a few dollars cheaper. Best of all, she loves it there. So maybe it was meant to be. By the way, when I told a friend about our day care expulsion, she suggested letting our dogs play together and seeing how it goes. Her endless energy Pitty pup is a great match for my bulldog who loves to wrestle. Now we have our own dog park day care several times each week. That’s a very happy ending.
Have you had a difficult dog day care experience? What did you do? How is your dog now? Would love to hear about it in the comments or feel free to tweet me @ImLauraHouse.