Kids are always threatening to run away from home; however, we don't usually hear of dogs doing it. But it happened. Riley the Golden Retriever was outside in his backyard enjoying the sun, when the next thing his pet parent knew the gate was open and Riley was nowhere to be seen.
It wasn't dog-nappers that had whisked the pooch away, it was of Riley's own doing. Apparently he missed his doggy daycare pals and decided to take a trip to the facility on his own. Luckily, five year-old Riley had done this one-mile walk with his pet parent many times since he was a puppy and knew the way by-heart.
Thankfully, Riley made the trip safely and sat patiently outside the door for someone to let him in. The good folks at Happy Dog Cafe and Boutique spied the canine outside the door and let him in. They then called Riley's worried owners.
The happy pooch was no worse-for-wear and immediately grabbed a chew bone and joined his furry pals…hey, sometimes a guy just needs to be with his buddies!
It's no surprise that Riley would want to be with his furry friends. Some dogs are extremely social animals and actually have a pack-mentality. This possible dates back to their wild ancestors that lived in communal groups for hunting and survival purposes.
However, not all dogs retain their social-butterfly attitude like Riley seems to have done. Research into dog behavior is now showing that, just like people, our dogs can become less social as they grow older. This can include having a lower tolerance for puppies or those dogs they deem as “annoying” or “unacceptable.”
This is where the whole issue of whether putting a dog into a daycare situation is really a beneficial arrangement or one that is causing stress to our pets.
Some misinformed pet parents may be thrilled when Fido comes home exhausted from daycare, sleeping the night away. But is he tired from a day of frolicking-fun or from being bullied by the daycare “ruffs?”
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Before you put your dog into a care facility, ponder these four important points.
- Your Dog – Is your pooch timid or very social? Remember some doggy daycares have upwards of 30 dogs at one time. If your pooch is on the timid side, this could be an extremely frightening experience for him.
- The Staff – A facility should have an adequate number of trained staff-to-dog ratio. The staff should also be educated in dog behavior and know how to handle any situation that arises.
- The Facility – Doggy Daycares should be clean, have plenty of room for exercise and cozy areas for dogs that want to be alone.
- Dog Evaluation – Each dog that enters through the daycare's doors should be evaluated for personality, health, size etc. and treated accordingly.
Don't just drop your dog off at a daycare and assume it will all work out. Do your research, talk to the staff and take a tour before you commit to leaving your beloved fur baby at a doggy daycare.