Size: Our Facility is small. We only have 15 Suites. This allows us to really get to know your dog and to spend quality time with them.
Climate Control: Our Facility is climate controlled. You don’t have to worry if your dog will get too hot or too cold. Our facility is never colder than 64 degrees and never warmer than 70 degrees.
Safety: Your dog’s safety in our Number 1 priority. While we walk your dog, we will take NO chances of your dog getting away from us. Therefore, we Double-Leash your pet with two adjustable slip leads with a ‘locking’ feature. Not only can your dog not back out of these slip leads, but by double-leashing your pet, it insures that if one leash breaks, that there is a backup to keep your dog from getting away. We also ‘wrap’ the leashes around our wrists/hands in case a dog decides to ‘bolt’. In addition, for safety reasons, we do NOT allow dogs from different families to intermingle. While some may think this is ‘cute’, it can be dangerous. We have heard horror stories of dogs that have been allowed to ‘play’ with other strange dogs and the ending was literally deadly. Please remember that no amount of ‘behavioral assessment’ can predict what may happen in a real life setting. Remember, your dog is a pack animal, and they WILL try to establish a hierarchy.
Individual Attention: Your dog receives one on one attention (or maybe 2:1, or 3:1, if you have multiple dogs in a single family unit). If your dog is in a ‘play area’ with other strange dogs (which we don’t recommend --- see our Safety section) you are going to find that one, or two, staff is overseeing several dogs. It’s very hard to divide your attention among several dogs at a time. It’s also dangerous in that, because these dogs are playing for your attention, they may become jealous of other dogs and this can lead to a fight. When the staff to dog ratio is too high, what are the odds that a fight could be broken up before a dogs gets hurt? … think about it.
Health: Our boarding area is set up with a fresh air exchange unit so that fresh air circulates through the boarding area several times a day. This reduces the risk of airborne illness.
Also, all dogs in our boarding area are fully vaccinated and, to our knowledge, are illness free. If they don’t have their shots, or show signs of illness, they are not allowed in our boarding area.
While no Kennel is immune to illnesses, you are at a greater risk if you are boarding at a Rescue, or a Vet. We always recommend that where ever you go, that you do your homework. Keep in mind that Rescue dogs are not always vaccinated when they arrive and many are sick when they come in. Also a dog being vetted is probably there because 1) they are recovering from surgery or 2) they are too sick to be treated at home. Where ever you board, please make sure that your dog will not be kenneled in the same area as rescue dogs or vetted dogs that are there for an illness that may be contagious (Most vets are equipped to isolate ill dogs, but it is always best to ask questions and be sure). Remember, some illnesses are airborne, like kennel cough (to learn more about Kennel Cough ... print off our information sheet on our Forms page, under Boarding). Unless you have a separate ‘containment’ area, your dog can contract a contagious illness (although, even a separate 'containment' area may not be enough for some illnesses as a dog can be a 'carrier' of an illness and not present any symptoms for days). Also, make sure that ill/unvaccinated dogs are not using the same potty/play areas as the boarding dogs. Dogs like to sniff (among other things :) ) other dogs feces and urine and some illness may be contracted this way.
Grassy Area: Our dogs play/walk on a grassy area. Why is that an advantage?
Well, as we all know, blacktop and concrete can get very hot. If your dog is playing on blacktop or concrete over an extended period, beware. The pads of their feet may be getting burnt.
Also beware of some Artificial turfs that are out there. Artificial turfs must be installed properly and treated regularly to allow for proper drainage and sanitation. Be sure to do your homework and ask questions.
Walk/Play: We WALK your dogs at least 3 times a day. Not many places have a play area AND a walking area. Some dogs prefer to walk, some prefer to be off leash in our play area. We let your dog decide. We try them in both environments. It doesn’t take us long to pick up on your dog’s preferences.
Cleanliness: Our Suites do NOT have drains. Why is this an advantage? Well, do you ever wonder why a kennel smells like a kennel? Check to see if they have drains in their kennels. Unless the drainage lines are flushed each time feces and urine are dumped into it, the feces and urine are just going to sit and ‘simmer’ in those drain lines until the lines are flushed, hence, the smell. Imagine defecating and urinating in your toilet and not flushing … does it smell? Need I say more? Drains are also an excuse for some kennels not to take pets outside … after all, all they have to do is hose the kennel down … they don’t even have to ‘get their hands dirty’.
Our suites have no drains. We believe in the old fashioned way of doing things. Your dog(s) get walked at least three times a day so they can relieve themselves naturally. And, if they do happen to have an accident in their Suite, we clean it just like you would at home …. With Bleach/Soap Water. Any soiled items (if it fits in our washer and if time permits before owner is due to pick up), are laundered.
In addition, because the owner's are a little OCD in the cleaning department (actually alot OCD), Suites are also cleaned 2 to 3 times daily regardless if your dog has 'an accident' or not.
We Listen to your Dog: We’ve had many clients ask us how long we walk/play with each dog. Well, I really don’t have a straight answer. You see, each dog is different. Let’s face it, most dogs are house pets and don’t like to get their little ‘tootsies’ dirty or wet. Other dogs love being outside. So, the answer I normally give is, for the most part, we let your dog decide. Your dog quickly learns were the door to the building is. Typically, when your dog is done, he leads us back. We don’t force them to stay out if they don’t want to. And, for those dogs that like the great outdoors, we play until we start to see them start run out of steam, then it’s time to come in. Of course, weather and your dog’s health will also play a factor in how long your dog stays out.
No Plus Pluses: Please know that here at Always About Pets, LLC, we got into this business for the love of pets and not for the love of money. While we have bills to pay like everyone else, we never plus, plus you to death just to gain a buck. We do NOT charge extra to give your dog pills/vitamins/shots. We do NOT charge extra to give eye drops or to apply wipes. We do NOT charge extra to walk your dog* (see Boarding page/Boarding Rates/Extra Fees) or to play with your dog. We do NOT charge extra if you forget to bring your own food. The only thing we DO charge extra for is if you want a toenail trim or a groom/bath during your pet’s stay with us.
Summary: Please understand that we are not trying to put other boarding facilities down. We just want you to be educated and to do your homework. Please do not be one of those pet owners who let the almighty dollar speak for your pet's care. Your decision may end up costing you more in the long run. Above all, please check out the boarding facilities in your area and make a educated choice. Make sure you ask for a tour. If they refuse to give you one, then I'd think twice about boarding there... they may be hiding something. Also, if they claim to exercise their boarding dogs, find out when they do so and just happen to drop by at that time to see 1) that they indeed are exercising their dogs and 2) that the dogs being exercised are being overseen by a acceptable Staff/Pet ratio (see our 'individual attention' section above) and that the dogs aren't left unattended.