If you are a dog owner who works long hours, travels frequently, or simply wants to provide your pup with some extra fun and socialization, you may have considered enrolling your dog in a doggy daycare.
Doggy daycare is a service that lets you drop off your dog at a facility where they will be cared for, exercised, fed, and watered until you pick them up again.
It can be a great option for many dogs and their humans, but it also comes with a price tag. So, how much does doggy daycare cost, and what factors affect the rates?
In this article, we will answer these questions and more, so you can decide if doggy daycare is worth it for you and your furry friend.
So, grab a leash, and let’s embark on this enlightening journey through the world of doggy daycare costs!
What is Doggy Daycare and Why Do You Need It?
Doggy daycare is similar to childcare for humans. It is a place where dogs can spend the day playing, learning, and interacting with other dogs and people, while their owners are away or busy. Doggy daycare can offer many benefits for dogs and their humans, such as:
- Regular exercise: Dogs may be quite active pets, and they require at least an hour of daily activity to keep healthy and content. Your dog will be able to run about fields and other environments at the dog daycare, simply receiving their fair bit of exercise.
- Mental stimulation: Dogs need mental stimulation as well since it keeps them interested and guards against sadness and boredom. Your dog may benefit from basic training, socialisation with other animals, and the use of engaging and dynamic toys to challenge and develop their minds, depending on the creche provider.
- Socialization: Any dog’s development requires socialisation, which is a crucial component. It entails getting to know new canines, people, and circumstances. Your dog will probably make new dog friends every few days and interact with a variety of people while attending dog daycare. They will become more at ease and self-assured around people as a result, which will enhance their kind and upbeat demeanour.
- Prevent separation anxiety: Separation anxiety is a common problem for some dogs. It occurs when your dog is left alone for too long and becomes stressed and anxious. This can lead to destructive behaviors such as chewing, barking, digging, or escaping. At doggy daycare, your dog will have company and attention throughout the day, which will reduce their anxiety and make them more calm and content when you return home.
- Relieve boredom: Boredom can also cause problems for dogs, especially if they are left alone with nothing to do. Bored dogs may develop bad habits such as chewing on furniture, shoes, or cords, or they may become depressed or overweight. At doggy daycare, your dog will have plenty of fun activities to keep them busy and entertained, which will prevent boredom and its consequences.
- Decrease loneliness: Loneliness can affect dogs as well as humans. Dogs are social animals that crave companionship and love. If they are left alone for long periods of time, they may feel isolated and sad. At doggy daycare, your dog will have friends to play with and staff to cuddle with, which will make them feel more loved and less lonely.
Factors That Affect the Cost of Doggy Daycare
Now that you know the benefits of doggy daycare, you may be wondering how much it costs. The answer is: it depends. There are many factors that can affect the cost of doggy daycare, such as:
- Location: The cost of doggy daycare can vary depending on where you live and where the daycare is located. Generally, urban areas tend to be more expensive than rural areas, due to higher demand and higher costs of living. The location of the daycare within the area can also make a difference, as some places may charge more for being closer to public transportation, parks, or other amenities.
- Facility: The cost of doggy daycare can also depend on the quality and size of the facility. Some facilities may offer more space, equipment, amenities, and services than others, which can affect the price. For example, some facilities may have indoor and outdoor play areas, climate control, grooming stations, webcams, or even swimming pools for the dogs. Others may have more basic features or less space. You should check out the facility before enrolling your dog and see what they offer and how they maintain it.
- Staff: The cost of doggy daycare can also be influenced by the staff that work there. Some facilities may have more staff than others, which can affect the level of care and supervision they provide. Some staff may also have more qualifications, experience, or training than others, which can affect their skills and knowledge. You should ask about the staff-to-dog ratio, the staff’s credentials, and how they handle emergencies or behavioral issues.
- Services: The cost of doggy daycare can also vary depending on the services they offer. Some facilities may offer more than just daycare, such as boarding, grooming, training, or transportation. These services can add to the convenience and value of the daycare, but they can also add to the cost. You should ask about what services are included in the price and what services are extra.
- Schedule: The cost of doggy daycare can also change depending on the schedule you choose for your dog. Some facilities may charge by the hour, by the day, by the week, or by the month. Some may offer discounts for multiple dogs or for longer stays. Some may also charge extra for weekends, holidays, or peak hours. You should compare different options and see what works best for your budget and your dog’s needs.
Average Doggy Daycare Rates in Different Regions
As we mentioned above, the cost of doggy daycare can vary widely depending on many factors. However, to give you a general idea of what to expect, here are some average rates for doggy daycare in different regions of the United States:
- Northeast: The Northeast region includes states such as New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Connecticut. The average cost of doggy daycare in this region is around $35 per day or $175 per week.
- Midwest: The Midwest region includes states such as Illinois, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. The average cost of doggy daycare in this region is around $25 per day or $125 per week.
- South: The South region includes states such as Texas, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and Tennessee. The average cost of doggy daycare in this region is around $20 per day or $100 per week.
- West: The West region includes states such as California, Washington, Oregon, Colorado, and Arizona. The average cost of doggy daycare in this region is around $30 per day or $150 per week.
Of course, these are just estimates based on averages and may not reflect the actual prices in your area or at your chosen facility. You should always do your own research and compare different options before making a decision.
How to Choose the Right Doggy Daycare for Your Needs
Not all doggy daycares are created equal, and not all dogs are suitable for this service. Some dogs might prefer a more quiet and private environment, while others might thrive in a more lively and social setting. Some dogs might have special needs or preferences that require more attention or care. Therefore, it is important to do your research and find a doggy daycare that matches your dog’s personality and needs.
Here are some factors to consider when choosing a doggy daycare:
- Admissions process: A good doggy daycare should have a thorough admissions process that includes an evaluation of your dog’s health, behavior, temperament, vaccination records, and compatibility with other dogs. This will ensure that your dog is safe and comfortable at the facility.
- Staff qualifications: A good doggy daycare should have qualified staff members who are trained in dog behavior, handling, first aid, and CPR. They should also be friendly, attentive, and caring towards the dogs.
- Facility conditions: A good doggy daycare should have a clean, spacious, and secure facility that provides adequate ventilation, lighting, heating, cooling, and sanitation. The facility should also have separate areas for different sizes and temperaments of dogs, as well as crates or beds for resting.
- Activities and enrichment: A good doggy daycare should offer a variety of activities and enrichment for the dogs, such as group play, individual play, training sessions, nosework games, puzzle toys, etc. The activities should be tailored to each dog’s needs and preferences, and should be supervised by staff members at all times.
- Policies and procedures: A good doggy daycare should have clear policies and procedures regarding hours of operation, drop-off and pick-up times, fees and payment methods, cancellation policy, emergency protocol, etc. The policies and procedures should be communicated to you in writing before you sign up for the service.
Yes, many doggy daycare centers offer discounts and packages to accommodate frequent visitors or long-term stays. These packages may provide cost savings for weekly, monthly, or yearly commitments, allowing you to save money while ensuring your dog receives regular care and socialization.
Yes, there are alternative options if traditional daycare doesn’t fit your budget or preferences. Pet sitting services, in-home care, or hiring a dog walker for regular exercise can be more cost-effective solutions. However, it’s important to assess the individual needs and temperament of your dog before choosing an alternative option.
Many doggy daycare centers have age restrictions for attending daycare. Puppies usually need to have completed their initial vaccinations and be at least four to six months old to join daycare programs. This ensures the safety and health of all dogs in the facility. It’s essential to check with the daycare center about their specific age requirements.
Yes, many doggy daycare centers offer additional services that can impact the overall cost. These services may include grooming, training, spa treatments, or specialized activities like agility courses or swimming sessions. Each additional service usually has its own pricing structure, so it’s important to inquire about these options and their associated costs.
Doggy daycare can be a great option for busy dog owners who want to provide their dogs with the best care possible. It can offer many benefits for both you and your dog, such as regular exercise, mental stimulation, socialization, prevention of separation anxiety, peace of mind, time saving, guilt reduction, and relationship improvement.
However, it can also be a costly service that depends on several factors, such as location, facility, services, and dog. Therefore, it is important to do your research and find a doggy daycare that suits your dog’s personality and needs, as well as your budget and preferences.
You can also use some tips to save money on this service, such as comparing prices, negotiating rates, using alternatives, and using sparingly.
Ultimately, the decision of whether doggy daycare is worth it or not depends on you and your dog. If you think that your dog will enjoy and benefit from this service, and you can afford it without breaking the bank, then go ahead and give it a try. If not, then there are other ways to keep your dog happy and healthy while you are away.
Ellis is a retired veterinary technician and full-time contributor at DogLovesBest. He likes writing about pet health care tips and reviews the products that are useful for fidos on a daily basis.
Ellis also guardians a Siberian husky, Nova, and a cat named Shilly. They all live happily with his wife Ammy, and both the dogs on a seaside apartment in Queens, NY.