10 Surprising Doggie Daycare Benefits + Guide To Find The Best

Have you ever wondered about doggie daycare? Have you thought it was only for the rich and those that have overly pampered pooches? Well, let me open your eyes a bit. While it can be almost like Disneyland for your dog it may surprise you to learn the benefits and how affordable doggie daycare is for most pet parents. Today, let’s dig into doggie daycare benefits. And spoiler – it can be super budget-friendly!

a small dog pack is ready to enjoy the doggie daycare benefits
disclaimer note

*Updated: March 31, 2023

Budget Tip:

You may think that doggie daycare is too pricey. But the benefits can easily outweigh the costs. Besides, at least in my area, a full day for Henry, my dog, at one of his favorite places is only $25. This means he's well exercised, cared for, and he gets some socialization time. Plus, I get some time to get caught up on things I can't do with Henry. It's definitely something to add to your dog budget.

What are the doggie daycare benefits? 

There are many benefits to putting your dog into doggie daycare. Let’s look at the top 10 benefits.

1. Socialization 

Dogs are by nature pack animals. Having your dog attend doggie daycare gives him the chance to interact with other dogs. However, daycare for dogs should not be used as a means to teach your dog to be social. He should already be social. Doggie daycare is a way for him to be social, like when you hang out with your friends.  Additionally, dogs in daycare are monitored very carefully. Generally, small dogs are separated from large dogs. And puppies are separated from adult dogs. Doggie Care is a safe option for extending your dog’s social skills.

2. Exercise 

If you’ve got a puppy or a high-energy dog, it can be exhausting to exercise the dog enough. At daycare for dogs, you will not need to worry about exercise. There are generally, many activities and entertainment to exercise the dogs. My little dog generally is asleep, before I ever get him home from doggie daycare. He’s excited to go and exhausted when he leaves. That’s the way you want your dog to be about his daycare.

In this article, I discuss different exercises to do with your dog.

3. Separation anxiety 

If your dog suffers from separation anxiety, daycare for dogs could solve the problem. You will not walk in the house to a shredded couch cushion. If you suffer from separation anxiety from your dog, #8 below will help you.

In this article, I discuss how I was able to resolve my rescue dog’s panic attacks.

4. Boredom 

a cute dog plays and enjoys doggie daycare benefits

If your dog is often bored, doggie daycare will most likely cure him. He will not be bored. There are many activities to do and new doggie friends to meet. There will be no time to be bored. 

5. Safe environment 

Doggie daycares are generally staffed by many humans in a puppy and doggie-proof environment. (I do recommend you do a site inspection with your dog prior to his first day at daycare). Knowing he’s being cared for and monitored by a loving staff in a safe environment, can be much better than coming home to something broken.

6. Routines and consistency 

Doggie daycare emphasizes routines and consistency, which is when dogs tend to thrive. Most trainers will tell you consistency is key. When you get into a routine with your dog, whether it’s walking, eating, bedtime, training, or going to daycare, they will thrive and blossom. At doggie daycare, they are set up to be routine with playtime, rest time, activity time, and food time. This will also help you in your home life with your dog.

7. Confidence builder 

dogs play and enjoy doggie daycare benefits

If you have a shy or timid dog, then doggie daycare can help build confidence. Staff will make sure your dog is not overwhelmed, yet socialized as much as he can handle. The more he attends doggie daycare, the more confidence he’ll build. He may even find a BFFF.

8. Cameras 

Many doggie daycares have cameras that allow you to log in and see your dog throughout the day. This gives you peace of mind that he’s safe and happy. Thus, if you have separation anxiety, this will help you to continue your connection with your dog.

9. Stress reducer 

No, this isn’t about your dog. This is about you. When you know your dog is safe, in a safe environment, having fun and you can monitor him, it helps to reduce your stress and allows you to do whatever it is you need to do for the day. And let’s face it, this is almost a priceless benefit.

In this article, I talk about how your dog helps reduce your stress level. 

10. No one entering your home 

Unlike a dog walker, no one will be entering your home to care for your dog with doggie daycare. This can be a huge relief. With a dog walker, you have to trust the person not only to be good to your dog and walk him according to your instructions, but you also have to trust the person to enter your home when you are not home. Many are not comfortable with this aspect of dog walkers. On the other paw, with doggie daycare, you just trust them with your dog and you can generally monitor them online. This is also another stress reducer.

Do you like the benefits of daycare for dogs?

What to look for in a great doggie daycare? 

1. Reviews 

Look at online reviews. This includes YELP, Google, and the facility’s website client reviews. I always encourage taking the overall view of reviews. That means don’t look at only the positive or only the bad, rather get the 10,000-foot review.

  • Ask family and friends for reviews and referrals. If a specific daycare for dogs is good enough for a family member, it should warrant a site visit.
  • Ask your veterinarian for a referral. Sometimes there’s doggie daycare attached to the vet’s offices. These are great, if they have good reviews because if anything should go wrong, your vet is a walk away.

In this article, I give a step-by-step on how to find a great veterinarian for you and your dog.

2. Licensed & insured 

All doggie daycares should be licensed and insured. This protects both you and the facility if something awful and unforeseen should happen. If for some reason you talk with a daycare that is not licensed and insured, look elsewhere.

3. Number of dogs per staff 

You want to know the number of staff to dogs. You don’t want to take your dog to a daycare that’s overwhelmed by dogs. I would say a good rule of thumb would be no more than 10 dogs per staff. Otherwise, a dog can get overlooked.

4. Staff training 

What type of training does the staff have? Are they trained in canine first aid? Do you know basic dog training? Are they trained in basic animal behavior?

5. Activities

What type of activities does the daycare offer? Some will have agility-type activities. Some will have more basic playtime activities. Is the equipment new and in good shape?

6. Cleanliness

When you visit the facility, how clean is it, and the staff? Yes, there will be fur. But how clean is it? Does it smell like dog urine or feces? You definitely don’t want that. Does the staff look professional with a smile?

7. Site visit 

When you find a daycare that’s checking your boxes, ask for a visit. Take your dog with you and take note of his reaction to the facility and the staff. This is good information. If he tries to escape and they are not interested in calming him, then this is not a place for you. However, if the staff gently calms him and he warms up to the facility and staff, that’s a good sign. Most importantly, if you ask for a site visit with your dog and they say no, then you may want to reconsider this daycare. There is a reason they are not willing to allow you to see what they are doing behind the curtain.

8. Cameras

Not all daycares, but most daycares offer online monitoring of your dog. You will want to ask if this is a service this daycare provides.

9. Other services 

Some daycares offer other services such as grooming, giving of medication, overnight kennels, massages, and the list is growing.

10. Payment

You will definitely want to know what the prices are before you drop off or pick up your dog. Generally, prices are more affordable than many think. For example, in my area for a full day of doggie daycare, the price is $20. Some even offer packages with discounts. How you pay also needs to be established. Some will only accept credit cards. While others only want checks. You will need to verify before your first visit.

TIP: Keep in mind that you MUST provide a copy of your dog’s vaccination records before dropping him at daycare for the first time. 

In this article, I talk about various people and places that will ask for a copy of your dog’s vaccination records. Some may surprise you.

Dogs That Aren’t A Good Fit For Doggie Daycare 

1. Aggressive

This kind of speaks for itself. An aggressive dog will be difficult for staff. The dog becomes a liability to the facility and you. I do recommend training. You may need to look at private training, to avoid other dogs.

In this article, I talk about how to identify your dog as aggressive and what to do if you have an aggressive dog.

2. Unvaccinated 

This is to protect your dog, other dogs, and the daycare staff. 

3. Injured or diseased 

For some daycares and dogs injuries or diseases will be fine with accepting your dog. For example, an amputee dog, will most likely do well and be welcomed at doggie daycare. However, a dog recovering from surgery may need some time to heal before a daycare visit. It’s best to verify with your vet. You may also need a letter from your vet stating that your dog is cleared to go to daycare.

4. Unaltered 

Some daycares will accept unaltered dogs, but generally, they will be separated by themselves or closely monitored.

Related articles:

Summary of benefits of daycare for dogs 

With doggie daycare, you can expect to receive benefits from such things as socialization, exercise, no separation anxiety, no boredom, a safe environment, emphasis on routines and consistency, confidence builder for a shy dog, cameras to watch your dog, stress reducer for you, and no one entering your home. Of course, this isn’t an exclusive list. You may find other benefits to doggie daycare for your dog.

When looking for a great doggie daycare there are a few things to consider including reviews, licensed and insured, the number of dogs to staff, training of staff, dog activities, cleanliness of the facility, site visit, and evaluation, facility cameras, and access, other services provided, and payment methods. As you speak with the daycare staff, you may well discover more questions that need to be addressed.

Unfortunately, there are a few dogs that won’t do well at doggie daycare. These dogs include but aren’t limited to, aggressive, unvaccinated, injured or diseased, and unaltered dogs.

Have you found a doggie daycare facility yet for your dog? If you can, it’s great to have a regular daycare and a backup, just in case your regular daycare gets booked full when you absolutely need a specific date. I sometimes use doggie daycare as an award. I will take my dog to daycare for his birthday, which will be a huge celebration at daycare.

Have you taken your pup to doggie daycare? Have you found other benefits to taking your pup to daycare?

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About Terri Rodefer

Terri Rodefer is the founder of Tail Wag Wisdom, a blog focused on affordable pet care. She likes to say helping pet parents afford and love their animals even more, makes her tail wag. As a lifelong lover of all animals with a background in economics, biology, and marketing, allows Terri to bring a unique spin to pet care. 

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