Sometimes the question is asked intriguingly. "What an interesting idea, why would people send their dog to day care?" Sometimes the question is asked incredulously. "Why would anyone spend money for their dog to go to day care?" Whatever the motivation behind the question, people want to know why this phenomenon is popping up all over. There are as many answers to the question as there are dogs using the service.
- Dogs are pack animals and have an innate need to be part of a pack.
- Social hierarchy, etiquette and communication are skills learned from older more experienced pack members…humans cannot teach pack etiquette!
- Dogs utilize a sophisticated system of body-language to communicate. If this “doggie language” is not learned the dog cannot decipher what other dogs are trying to communicate…they will react inappropriately when they encounter other dogs (e.g. barking, growling, pulling when they see another dog during their walk).
Relief of Boredom
- Most dogs are left alone or crated because their parents work long hours.
- Long hours alone can lead to severe boredom, separation anxiety and development of behavioral disorders (e.g. incessant barking, indoor accidents, chewing of prized possessions).
- Daycare allows release of pent-up energy, mental stimulation and opportunities for self-expression.
- Many breeds that now find themselves living in our neighborhoods were originally bred for working. Now instead of herding sheep, they sleep, eat, look out a window, eat, look out the back window, and to break-up the monotony: eat. The result of all this gluttony is an overweight dog!
- Some large breeds desire more exercise than working parents can provide.
- Being overweight increases the stresses on the joints, bones and cardio-vascular system and reduces the longevity and overall quality of life for dogs.