Doggie Daycare at South Mesa Veterinary Hospital
We pride ourselves on our outstanding safety record, transparency with clients, and our positive, reward-based training philosophies. Our entire staff is trained in canine body language, positive reinforcement training, and gentle handling techniques.
We love working with dogs, and we're dedicated to providing each of our daycare pups with a fun, stimulating, and educational experience while they're with us.
Benefits of Daycare for Your Pup
Just like people, exercise is vital for a dog’s physical and mental health. Daycare provides a place for your dog to exercise like a dog: running, playing, chasing, rolling, and wrestling – so when you pick them up at the end of the day, they are tired and content. They get to interact with carefully screened and evaluated dogs, which gives them the chance to interact with a variety of breeds, personalities, ages, and environments.
- Problem Prevention
Dogs are active animals that were bred to have specific jobs. In our society we ask our dog, with an ingrained work ethic, to stay at home and wait while we work during the day. This will often lead to boredom and unfortunate creativity – expressed as destruction – on the dog’s part. Dogs who don’t have their mental and physical needs met are dogs that will get into trouble.
At Doggie Daycare, good manners are practiced throughout the day – we work on no barking, no jumping, proper play and interactions, and impulse control. We expect our daycare pups to go home better-behaved than when they came.
- Environmental Enrichment
Dogs need just as much mental exercise as they do physical activity. Daycare is a great place to fill your dog’s brain with thoughts, smells, lessons, visual stimulation, sounds, decisions, and problems to solve.
Play Packs may be shared between dogs from the same family.
Individual Day | $31
Additional Day in Same Week | $29
5-Pack | $135
11-Pack | $280
22 pack | $505
Getting Started with Doggie Daycare
Before scheduling a Temperament Test, please be sure to fill out an application, and provide current vaccination records and proof of annual fecal test.
Schedule a Temperament Test ($25 fee)
A Temperament Test is a 30-minute evaluation with you and your dog with our daycare manager before starting daycare. This gives our staff a “heads up” on any behavior issues your dog may have before starting daycare. *All materials must be submitted and current BEFORE scheduling a Temperament Test!
Schedule a Play Skills Day (No charge)
The Play Skills Day is your dog’s first full day of daycare that will serve as a slow introduction to our staff, the facility, and other dogs. This allows our staff to see if your dog will enjoy the daycare environment.
Your dog can run as much as possible in our climate-controlled, indoor play area and our enormous outdoor play area. Surrounded by an 8-foot fence, your dog can enjoy our artificial turf field as they soak up the Colorado sun.
You can rest assured that our staff is watching your dog at all times while they develop friendships and learn manners through techniques designed by Certified Pet Dog Trainer and Canine Behavior Consultants.
Our vets are standing by at all times in cause the need should arise, and we maintain a strict policy of 1 staff member for every 15 dogs.
With our thorough screening process, temperament testing, and one-day-a-week consistent commitment from our clients, we offer a safe and enjoyable experience for your dog.
Read the FAQs below to learn more about our Doggie Daycare service!
- What is different about your facility?
We pride ourselves on our outstanding safety record and our positive, reward-based training philosophies. Our goal is to have your dog walk in the door excited to be here and go home tired, happy, injury-free, and better behaved than when they came in.
To provide the highest quality of care for your canine companion, our program was designed by professional trainers with credentials in CBCC-KA (Certified Behavior Consultant Canine) and CPDT-KA (Certified Pet Dog Trainer-Knowledge Assessed).
Our entire staff is trained in canine body language, positive reinforcement training, and gentle handling techniques. We strictly maintain a ratio of 1 staff member to 15 dogs, and our staff remains in the room with the dogs at all times to intervene immediately if needed. We keep our groups small, with approximately 15 dogs per group. This ensures that your dog gets to spend quality time with its best buddies without becoming overwhelmed.
We have veterinarians available at all times during daycare hours should your dog need medical assistance while in our care. To maintain our high standards of care, we require temperament tests for all new dogs, a 1 day a week minimum commitment, and only offer full days of daycare.
- How does a day at daycare work?
All dogs are dropped off between 7 and 9:30 am and go into nap dens*. At 9:30, dogs start their day in groups according to size. They play until 12:00 pm when they go back into their nap dens for a mid-day snooze (and lunch if provided). At 2:00 pm, dogs are let out to the potty before rejoining their groups. They play until 5:00 pm when they go back into their nap dens until they are picked up. Dogs can be picked up between 4 and 6:30 pm.
*Nap dens are custom-made kennels that provide a quiet, comfortable place for your dog to relax while taking a break from play.
- Why are half days not an option?
In doing extensive research before the creation of Come-Play-Stay, we found that more dog-to-dog conflicts and injuries occurred in daycares offering half days. This is a result of a lack of cohesiveness in dog playgroups—the introduction or exit of dogs throughout the day disrupts this cohesion and leads to more dog-to-dog conflict. For your dog’s safety, we only offer full days in which all dogs go out to play at the same time to eliminate the added stress of dogs coming and going throughout the day.
- Why do you have a 1 day a week minimum requirement?
As a “Good Manners Facility”, we strive to have your dog go home better behaved than when they arrived. If dogs come less frequently than 1 day a week, they tend to forget the “rules” and spend more time in “time out”, resulting in less playtime.
We implement positive reinforcement training to make learning fun for your dog and to produce more reliable behavior. We work on common problem behaviors such as jumping, barking, inappropriate play, impulse control, name recognition, and basic manners. If you are interested in learning how to reinforce the good manners your dog learns at daycare, please ask one of our staff members about our Smart Dog classes.
- Why can I not bring my dog 5 days a week/back-to-back days?
We have found that dogs that come back-to-back days are too tired from their previous day’s activities and tend to get cranky with their dog friends. They need a day of rest between their long days of play. In human terms, imagine playing 7-hour games of tackle football 5 days a week—you’d be awfully tired and grumpy, too!
- What is a Temperament Test and why do you require them?
A Temperament Test is a 30-minute evaluation with you and your dog with one of our daycare supervisors before starting daycare. There is a $25 fee for the test. All dogs entering daycare are required to do a temperament test to screen for behavior issues with humans (shyness, fearfulness, handling—feet touched, etc.).
This gives our staff a “heads up” on any issues your dog may have before starting daycare. These behavior issues do not automatically exclude your dog from daycare—they are simply assessed by a supervisor to determine the best daycare fit for your dog.
- What is a Play Skills Day?
After the Temperament Test has been passed, you will sign your dog up for their first day of daycare—their “Play Skills Day”. There is no charge. This is a full day of daycare that will serve as a slow introduction to our staff, the facility, and other dogs.
Your dog will spend the morning simply observing—taking in the new sights, smells, sounds, etc. of their new environment. Depending on your dog’s comfort level, they will be introduced to other dogs after the lunch hour. If they seem comfortable with their new surroundings and friends, they will get to romp around until you pick them up in the evening. If they are still a little unsure, we will put them in their pen within the larger group until they get more comfortable.
At the end of the day, a daycare staff member will let you know how they did and recommend the best day for them to come (taking your schedule into account). We pride ourselves on being honest with clients, and if your dog seems very stressed or upset about the experience, we will let you know and either suggest another day that might be less rowdy or recommend against daycare altogether.
- What kind of space will my dog be playing in?
We have a large indoor area with non-slip flooring as well as spacious outdoor areas with secure 8ft fencing surrounding the facility. Depending on the weather, dogs will have access to both the indoor and outdoor areas throughout the day; in inclement weather, dogs will be indoors with potty breaks every 30 minutes.
- Do you allow intact dogs (not spayed/neutered)?
Yes. We allow intact male and female dogs in daycare, provided they maintain the same standard of behavior as the spayed and neutered dogs in our care. Intact females are not allowed in daycare for 30 days following the start of their heat cycle. Please be aware that many intact animals do “age out” as they become sexually mature, making daycare inappropriate for them.
Looking for Overnight Care for Your Pet?
Regular daycare clients may participate in “Play and Stay”. Play all day in our daycare and quietly sleep their night away in our comfortable kennel, for those times you have to be out of town.