Aggressive dogs benefit greatly from doggy daycare. The problem is that many dog daycares won’t accept reactive dogs. In the grand scheme of things, it’s probably for the best that daycares don’t take this special type of dog. A dog daycare for reactive dogs needs to have a staff and environment that understands the unique needs of aggressive dogs.
Below you will learn more about doggy daycare for reactive dogs, so you can find the right dog daycare facility for your dog’s needs.
If your pup has been kicked out of daycare due to being aggressive, you may also want to read: Dog Kicked Out of Daycare
What to Look for in a Dog Daycare for Reactive Dogs
Dog daycare can be a great way to socialize and provide exercise for a reactive dog. It is important to understand that a reactive dog will need special considerations when attending daycare.
Since reactive dogs can become overwhelmed quickly, so it is important to find a dog daycare that offers individualized care and an environment that is tailored to the needs of your reactive pup.
Dog Trainers on Staff
A doggie daycare should have a staff that has been thoroughly trained on dog reactivity. While not all of the staff need to be professional dog trainers, they do need to specialize in what to do during an aggressive situation between two dogs or a dog and a person.
Dog trainers on staff are also useful for behavior modification during dog training. Many dog daycares for reactive dogs include training classes during the day. This can do wonders for adult dogs that have aggressive tendencies.
While doggy daycare for reactive dogs can be more expensive than a regular dog daycare facility, the additional services are well worth it.
Group Play Opportunities
While many dog owners of reactive dogs are quick to tell people their aggressive dogs can’t be included in group play, it’s actually encouraged in some dog daycare facilities. It can be part of dog training.
The benefits of being in group play can extend into activities at home. For instance, dog owners who struggle with leash reactivity may find that their dog’s reactivity isn’t as bad because of the dog training they receive at doggie daycare.
Please know that not all daycare environments for aggressive dogs offer group play and dog training. You can also decline the group play if you feel it’s not a good idea.
Adequate Room to Decrease Aggression
Aggressive behavior can increase if reactive dogs are made to stay in small places, such as a kennel that isn’t large enough for the body. When looking for a daycare center, be sure to ask about the kennel and play areas to see if they will be big enough for your pup. Of course, if you have a smaller dog, the size will likely be good enough for your feisty furbaby.
Read More: Why Is My Wheaten Terrier So Aggressive?
Kennel, Play, and Eating Times
Depending on what your dog is used to at home, strict kennel, play, and eating time may be an issue. For example, if your dog isn’t used to being in a kennel for more than 2 hours a day, you will need to ask how long dogs remain in the kennel each day.
It’s also important to know how much time they have in an indoor space as well as the outdoor area. If your dog is used to being outside, but the daycare facility only takes dogs out to relieve themselves, the doggie daycare may not be a good fit.
The same goes for eating times. If your pup is used to free feeding, but the daycare center doesn’t allow that, it may cause problems with your dog getting the food he/she needs throughout the day. Unless the dog daycare for reactive dogs is willing to accommodate your dog’s eating habits, you may need to find a different one.
Getting physical activity is one of the many benefits of putting a dog in doggy daycare. Ask a staff member of the dog daycare for reactive dogs if they exercise pets throughout the day.
This is especially important if the daycare accepts young puppies that are full of energy.
Prong Collars for Leash Reactivity
Some pet parents are very much against prong collars. Since many trainers recommend them, they may be used with leash-reactive dogs. If you are against them, be sure to ask the staff members at each daycare facility if they use them.
How to Find the Right Daycare
Finding the right daycare for your reactive dog can take some time. The following tips will help you find one that is a good fit for you and your pup.
Ask Dog Owners for Recommendations
Going to a dog park where there are other dog owners is a great way to learn about dog daycares for reactive dogs in the area. You may need to choose a good time when there are reactive dog owners, which is usually when there aren’t many people at the dog park.
Reach Out to Professional Dog Trainers
Instead of focusing on dog daycares in the area, try reaching out to professional dog trainers. They usually have a wide variety of resources to choose from, including daycare facilities for dogs that exhibit aggressive behavior.
Speak to Staff Members at Local Doggy Daycare Centers
Even though many doggy daycare centers don’t accept aggressive dogs, you can ask them if they know of any that do. Most of them have a list for pet parents because they often have to turn pets away.
How to Choose the Right Daycare for Reactive Dogs
As you speak to different doggy daycares for reactive dogs, you will likely start to feel which ones would provide the best care. If you’re not sure, visit the ones that you can’t decide between with your pup.
The best thing you can do is watch your dog in the daycare environment. Be sure to pay attention to your pup’s body language, so you can see if the facility is a possibility or not.
When to Know a Dog Daycare for Reactive Dogs Won’t Work
Many dogs act different after daycare when they first start. It’s a new environment and it can take some time to get used to.
Give it at least 20 days before pulling the plug on the doggie daycare for reactive dogs. If your dog is still not at ease, it may be time to find another one.
Also, don’t think that if one doesn’t work, they all won’t work. Each place is different and your dog may like one over another one. Keep trying until you find the best one for your pet.
Now you know what to expect with a dog daycare for reactive dogs. Please feel free to comment below with your experiences or questions. We’re here for support and help.