How Doggy Daycare Changed Over Time

Happy dogs in daycareThe life of dogs has significantly changed since they were first domesticated some 20,000 years ago. One of their main purposes was to be a herding animal on the farm, and now they’ve made their way to our home and our hearts. The emergence of doggy daycare was fueled by this new relationship between canines and humans. Read on to know more about the history of doggy daycare and how they’ve changed over the years.



How things started

Before World War II broke out, it was more common for dogs to be outside rather than in a home. But after the war, urbanization and an increase in the number of adults living without children led to more adoption of pups to people’s homes. According to Dr. Michael Garvey, the director of the Animal Medical Center, “As modern life got quicker and more impersonal, the pet moved in to take the place of friends and family.”

It was during this time that the dog care industry, including doggy daycare, started to emerge.

According to the American Pet Products Association, in 2019, there are more than 63 million U.S. households with dogs.

The world’s first modern doggy daycare was established by Joseph S. Sporn in New York City in 1986 called the Yuppy Puppy. Started as a dog sitting service, the company grew to a daycare center as the demand for doggy daycare was on the rise. Increasingly, dog owners started to have jobs with long hours, and they needed a place where their pups could be taken care of while they were gone. It was in the early 90s that the business of doggy daycare started to flourish. Today, there are more than 19 million dogs attending doggie daycare worldwide each month.



Longer workdays and doggy daycare

While modern life has brought more pups into our home, it had also changed the work-life balance of many dog parents. It used to be one person that could stay at home and take care of their pooch, but things started to change quickly when both dog owners needed jobs. Leaving behind their four-legged companion was and continues to be something that dog owners are anxious about, and rightly so. Many problems can arise from leaving your furry friend home alone for an extended period.

A daycare service came as the perfect solution to the problem. With the ever-increasing demand, one daycare after another started to pop up all over the country. As of 2019, it’s estimated that there are around 16,000 dog daycares in the U.S.

Doggy daycare continues to improve over the years

Dogs play outside at doggy daycareOne of the major differences between daycares in the past compared to now is the facilities they provide. In its early days, dog daycares were a lot simpler, with few amenities such as space for canines to roam around, cages, limited grooming services, and some toys to play with. Nowadays, daycares have everything from pools, indoor and outdoor areas, customized flooring, cameras, and not to mention spa-like treatments.

With the help of technology and research, the understanding of health and mechanisms of dogs have also improved.  As a result, services are now more advanced, focused, and efficient. There are classes and training programs created specifically to improve dogs’ behavior and overall wellbeing.

Daycares are now expected to keep up to date with the latest development of dog care, as dog owners are now more attentive to what’s best for their lovely pups and are willing to spend more money for the top pet care services. In 2017, people spent around US$6 billion in the United States on dog boarding and grooming services.


Dog owners use doggy daycare services regularly

Dog wears bandanaWith the changes and improvements in doggy daycare, many dog owners regularly enroll their furry friends, and not just when they need someone to look after their pup.

Doggy daycare has many benefits for your pooch. Dogs are social creatures, and therefore it’s important for them to mingle with other canines. Socialization is key to help prevent stress, depression, and improving their behavior. As E’Lise Christensen, a board-certified veterinary behaviorist in New York City, noted, “a daycare can be a great outlet for dogs for getting exercise and social enrichment.”

Today’s trend also lies in cage-free facilities. According to one survey, 77% of owners say they allow their pups to have free-roaming privileges at their home. The reason behind the popularity is that in a cage-free environment, canines can roam around freely and interact better with their dog friends. Having the freedom to move around freely can improve dogs’ comfort level and happiness.

Bringing your Fido to daycare will provide them with all these crucial aspects, which they wouldn’t otherwise get if they were left alone at home.


Choose the right daycare for your pooch

Although there are many doggy daycare services in the U.S, not all are the same. You’ll need to choose one that not only offers a wide range of services but also offers quality. If you leave your pooch in a boarding kennel that’s not a good fit for them, there’s a chance that it can do more harm than good.

Check out their facilities and programs before you enroll your pooch. It’s also a good idea to visit the daycare with your dog and see how they react with other canines and trainers. Daycares should also require all dogs to have vaccinations when checking in, as this is crucial in keeping all dogs healthy during their stay.

As time goes on, doggy daycare just keeps getting better, and The Dog Stop is here to exceed your expectations. We have everything you’re looking for—a safe environment for you pooch to play in, qualified trainers & caretakers, and cameras should you want to monitor your furry best friend. We also have pet retail shops that have everything you need for your four-legged friend.


Want to see more of what we’re all about? Come check us out at a location near you.