Frequently Asked Questions
Where does my dog sleep at night?
Each dog has his (or her) own indoor/outdoor kennel. Inside each dog has their bed, food/water dishes and any treats or toys brought from home. The inside is fully partitioned to give your pet privacy and security. The outside is a 15 foot long run. This is where your dog will get fresh air, exercise, and do their “business”. The indoor and outdoor area is separated by a doggie door.
Weather permitting, pets can come and go as they please during the day. Bedtime is 9PM, and after a bedtime snack, everyone is kept inside at night.
We are fully climate controlled so your pet is comfortable all year round.
The large kennels are 4x4 on the inside and 4x15 outside. Our large kennels will comfortably accommodate two large dogs or three medium dogs.
The small kennels are 3x3 on the inside and 3x15 on the outside. Our medium size kennels easily accommodate two or more small dogs.
I have multiple pets, can they stay together?
Sure! We frequently board the same family pets together. Our large kennels will comfortably accommodate two large dogs or three medium dogs. Our medium size kennels easily accommodate two smaller dogs. If your canine family is extra-large, we ask you to allow us to separate as needed for their comfort. There is a roommate fee for each additional pet per kennel.
What does my dog sleep on?
We provide blankets, comforters, and cuddly fleece bedding. We also have cushioned beds and thick cushioned mats for seniors or arthritic pets (We love pets, and want them to comfy!) All of our bedding is washed daily; insuring your dog always has a clean fresh bed.
You may bring your own bedding from home if you wish, but we ask that you put your name on it in permanent marker in case it needs to be washed. It can be difficult to remember which bedding came in with whom. Extra large, or foam beds will not fit in our washer, and will not be washed.
Some housebroken pets will soil their bedding while boarding in an attempt to make their surroundings smell familiar and less foreign.
Occasionally a pet will chew, or rip up bedding, even a bed they sleep on at home. No one is sure why they do this. We suggest not bringing any items you don’t want to risk.
Some owners prefer to leave their dog with something that has the owner’s scent. We have found a t-shirt or towel works well. It is small enough to put aside when cleaning and give back for your pet’s comfort.
What about toys?
Please feel free to bring toys you think your pet will enjoy having. We suggest one or two. Please understand that toys, get lost, left in the yard, or wrapped up in bedding. We do our best to make sure your pets go home with everything you brought with them, but we will not be responsible for any items brought. If you will be upset if it gets lost, please do not bring it.
What do you feed?
We feed “Iams” brand dry food mixed with Pedigree canned food.
Can I to bring my dog’s food?
Many people prefer to bring their dog’s food to avoid digestive upsets. We want your dog to be as happy as you do. Please feel free to bring your dog’s own food if you like. We ask that you bring it in some type of container which can be clearly labeled with your pet’s name. We have feeding dishes, standard measuring cups, and lids for canned food, so you may leave those at home.
Please no grocery bags or plastic bags that split easily.
Our storage is limited. If your pet is with us for a short stay, please only bring what is reasonably necessary. We rely on our customers to not overwhelm us with unnecessary items.
Please include instructions regarding when your pet eats and how much we need to feed. If your dog is on a special diet, bring it with you. We will discuss this with you at check in, and accommodate most breakfast/dinner routines. We have a refrigerator/freezer and microwave to accommodate any feeding needs.
What if I want my dogs to stay together, but they need to be separated for feeding?
This isn’t unusual. Please let us know at check in.
My dog is on medication, can he still stay?
Yes! We can give most daily medications, pills or ointments. Our staff will ask you if your pet is on any medication when you check in.
Please be patient as they enter this information into our computer.
Beginning March 1st, 2016
There is a $1 per dose, per day, charge for medications
This includes prescription medications, as well as non prescription supplements
WE DO NOT GIVE INSULIN INJECTIONS
If your pet is diabetic, and requires insulin injections, we suggest you discuss alternate pet care options with your veterinarian.
Bowwag is a “well pet facility”, so if your pet has significant medical needs, we may suggest that you consider veterinary supervision instead of a kennel.
My dog is very old, will you board senior pets?
Yes, provided your pet is in good health. Senior dogs who need assistance getting up, or have mobility issues require special TLC. We have found that these pets need more encouragement to move around, and extra trips in our playard to keep from getting stiff. At home these pets would be able to move from room to room at will. In a kennel, outside of their regular environment, the restrictions may impact them negatively. We rely on our customers to keep the pets best interests in mind. Please discuss your pets special needs with us in advance of your boarding stay. If we feel your pet needs a level of care that we can’t or shouldn’t provide, we will recommend alternate options. We are a “well pet facility”. We strive to provide the highest level of quality care for all pets. Have a pet who requires specialized care will incur extra charges .
Do you require certain vaccinations to stay at Bow Wag
You must provide us with a shot record from your vet stating that your dog is up-to-date on
Rabies, Distemper, and Bordatella (kennel cough)
These vaccinations are for the safety of your pet, and Bow Wag will NOT accept pets for boarding without proof of vaccines.
The safety of the pets in our care is our primary concern. Most veterinary hospitals are willing to print a shot record of your pet’s vaccination history. Some vet hospitals are able to fax this information to us for you, but it is the owner’s responsibility to provide us with this information. We suggest discussing your pets vaccination history with your vet before your bring your pet to the kennel.
What happens if I forget my shot record?
We will try to contact your vet and verify your pet’s vaccinations. If we cannot contact your vet, cannot verify your pet’s records, or your pet is not current on the required vaccinations, your pet will NOT be allowed to stay.
This is for the safety of the pets in our care and there are no exceptions to this rule. We strongly recommend you check your pet’s vaccination status in advance to make sure everything is in order before your bring your pet to the kennel. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns.
What if my vet doesn’t vaccinate my pet?
There are several reasons a veterinarian will not give yearly vaccines. Senior pets or pets that have reactions to vaccines are common. Some vets will do yearly blood titers to check immunity levels, rather than vaccinate. Many vets have adopted a moderate vaccination schedule routine for their clients. Simply provide us with a note from your vet stating it is safe to board your pet. Your pet’s health and safety is our main concern.
Can I stop by and have a tour?
Absolutely! We highly recommend this. It is a great opportunity for you to ask us questions, and see first-hand where your pet will stay. This is also the time to discuss any problems or issues you think your pet may have. We do not require an appointment for you to have a tour, but we do suggest that it not be before 10AM. We open at 9AM and generally have a lot of traffic in the office making it difficult for a staff member to get away.
Is anyone there after hours?
Yes! We wouldn't leave the animals alone. We have staff members living upstairs at all times. They are frequently in the kennel after business hours. Just like at home, care for your pets doesn't end at 5pm!
We feel like the time after hours is the time we get to really know your dog. Pets know when the "workday" is done, and the remainder of the day is spent relaxing with the special people who live here. It's important for your pet to know we can interact with them without distractions, and they appreciate the quiet time after the busy day. It's important for your pet to know they can count on us to give them this time. Disruption of their schedule causes anxiety, and we appreciate your cooperation in avoiding it.
The entire property, inside and out, is also monitored with security cameras.
If some is there all the time, why can't I pick up or drop off after hours?
Your pets are creatures of habit, and need a consistent routine to be comfortable and happy. The care and comfort of our guests is our priority! They deserve the time to be cared for and relaxed without interruptions. During business hours there is a staff caring for our guests, and a separate office, and grooming staff. After hours is a quieter, more personal time for everyone. It's important for your pet to know they can count on us to give them this time. Disruption of their schedule causes anxiety, and we appreciate your cooperation in avoiding it.
Our staff is here caring for the animals, and they are not allowed to answer the phone or let customers into the building outside of business hours. We appreciate your cooperation!
How far in advance should I make my boarding reservation?
We suggest that you make your reservation as soon as you know your travel plans. For holidays and summer times, try to make a reservation in anticipation of your trip. We get booked very quickly for common travel times.
Many of our clients’ book holidays and summers a year in advance and it is not unusual for us to be full starting in June, until Labor Day.
Please remember that your vacations and holidays are our busy season.
We require a $50 deposit for all reservations made between Mother’s Day and Labor Day as well as Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.
This deposit will be applied to your bill when your pet stays with us. If your plans change, your deposit will be refunded if we are given 72 hours notice before your stay was to begin. We appreciate your cooperation!
My dog may not go potty in his run. Will this be a problem?
This is something we routinely anticipate. We check every run before cleaning them several times each day. We make a note of any dogs that are not going potty in the run. If we see no evidence of urine or feces, we begin rotating your pet outside in our grassy yards in order for your pet to go potty. If your dog will not go potty in his or her run we will make sure your dog is taken to a grassy area several times a day so they will feel more comfortable "doing business". You will be advised upon check-out and there will be a fee for this service in future visits.
Why am I charged per day and not per night?
Much like a hotel, you are charged for the day you check in.
Rates are based on the day of boarding, not an overnight charge. Pets may check in at anytime during business hours. We consider closing time the end of the day, all pets on the premise at that time will be cared for during the evening and night.
Our staff begins tending to pet guests in our care every day at 7 AM.
Before you arrive for check out, your pet will have been fed, exercised and had their kennel cleaned.
Boarding dogs staying past 12 Noon (unless they are getting groomed) are charged for another day. If you decide to have your pet bathed and groomed on the day of departure, Monday thru Saturday, you are not charged for boarding that day, regardless of pick-up time. Only the grooming/bathing cost on that day.
We do not groom/bathe pets on Sundays.
Grooming for Sunday departures is done on Saturday afternoon. All pets departing on Sunday are charged boarding for Sunday.
Why does my dog sometimes smell after being boarded?
At Bow Wag we are meticulous in cleaning our kennels, and use hospital grade disinfectants to keep them spotless. However, in the closed quarters of the boarding kennel among the other pet guests, a dog’s natural odor may become more noticeable. Certain customers may also be more sensitive to pet odors after having not been with their pet for a while. Sometimes even a housebroken pet will soil their bedding while boarding in an attempt to make their surroundings smell familiar and less foreign. We recommend scheduling a “go home fresh bath” or grooming appointment, before pick up. In fact, if your pet gets a bath on Monday through Saturday, your boarding fee is waived for that day, you are only charged for the bath or grooming.
We do not groom/bathe pets on Sundays.
Grooming for Sunday departures is done on Saturday afternoon. All pets departing on Sunday are charged boarding for Sunday.
What time can I pick up my pet if they are getting groomed on the departure day?
Pick-up time will depend on how many dogs are already booked for grooming that day. Please ask us when you drop off your pet. We will ask what you want to have done to your pet (bath, nails, trim, clip, etc.) and give you a time for pick-up. For long-haired breeds or dogs with special haircut requests, a groomer will come out to discuss what you’d like. If you need to pick up your pet early on departure day, we will arrange to do the grooming the day before if necessary.
We do not groom/bathe pets on Sundays. Grooming for Sunday departures is done on Saturday afternoon. All pets departing on Sunday are charged for Sunday.
What time on Sunday can I pick up my pet?
Pick up is from 7PM to 8PM on Sundays.
As a courtesy to our customers, we provide checkout hours Sunday evenings. As animal lovers ourselves, we understand how eager you are to be reunited with your pet. These hours are set to not disturb your pet during his or her dinner time, as well as allow travelers ample time to return from your trip. Pets are comforted by set routines that they can count on, and it is our pleasure to give them the downtime they deserve. Our staff is here on Sundays caring for the animals, and they are not allowed to answer the phone or let customers into the building outside of business hours. We appreciate your cooperation!
We do not groom/bathe pets on Sundays. Grooming for Sunday departures is done on Saturday afternoon. All pets departing on Sunday are charged boarding for Sunday.
While my dog is boarding with you, will he be taken out for walks?
We have three securely fenced play yards for the dogs. This allows your pet to be able to run all they want or just sniff and wander. Play time is supervised by a staff member and frequent games of fetch and tug are not uncommon.
Play time is $6 per individual trip. $2 for each additional dog at the same time.
We do not do playtime during rain, snow, or extreme temperatures, and do not charge if your pet does not go out. This is individual pet play time, and we do not put dogs out in play groups.
Dogs from the same family may go out together, but we do not mix your dog with other people’s dogs.
Play time is usually about 20 minutes at the time. If the weather is nice, it could be longer. When it is very hot or cold, it may be broken into 2 shorter trips depending on your dog. Some breeds tolerate temperatures differently. A German shepherd may enjoy the snow, but a Chihuahua may not.
We strongly recommend some yard time for senior or arthritic pets. Older pets with stiffness often need to stretch and stay mobile for comfort and stress relief. Many times an older dog with arthritis needs to be encouraged to get up, but feels much better after a nice stroll. At home they have more freedom to walk around whenever they want, but when boarding they are out of their regular environment, and more confined than usual. Even if you think your pet won’t “play”, they still need to stay mobile for comfort. It significantly affects the quality of their time with us.
If your pet has significant mobility issues, such as not being able to get up without help, or walk on smooth surfaces, we urge you to discuss with your veterinarian any complications that could arise from boarding your dog. Your dogs comfort and health is most important.
We recommend our Hand walk option for pets that are shy or nervous.
It's great for a pet that may be unenthusiastic about going by themselves. We keep them on a long leash, so they know they are connected to someone, yet have as much space as they want. Relaxed walking and personal time with a caring person gives them some comfort and something to look forward to. The exercise and familiar experience helps reduce stress. $8 per walk.