Mild Doggie-Daycare-related rant.

OK. So my dog gets to go to Doggie Daycare every Friday (unless I’m broke). Sometimes I let her stay overnight, because hell, it’s only $1.50 extra. As an added bonus, I get One Night of Peace in my home this way, because I’ve recently “adopted” my mother’s dog, who pretty much hates my dog (though we’re working on it).

Anyway. Recently the Overnight rate has gone up to $4.00. Not a huge deal, but still a significant enough increase that I think twice now before leaving the pooch there for the night. I mean, you can’t get much with $1.50 (so you hardly feel the loss), but with $4.00 you can get dinner at Taco Bell (which possibility I am now forced to weigh against that One Night of Peace)! :wink:

So last Saturday morning when I went to pick up my dog, I happened to strike up a conversation with the owner/operator of the joint, and commented on the rate increase (not to complain–these people do great things for my dog, and $4.00 is certainly not unreasonable–but more out of curiosity)…

Well. She told me that what’s basically happening is:

a) Boarders from all over the city are taking in dogs for boarding, and then bringing them to her place to stay overnight. I mean, what better deal than to charge someone, say, five bucks to keep their dog overnight, then take the dog somewhere else to stay, pay the $1.50, and pocket the extra $3.50?

b) Because she (Doggie Daycare Lady) doesn’t have the manpower to keep more than, say, 50 dogs, she then has to turn away individual customers who’ve been loyal for years, because thanks to the groups of dogs being brought in by the other boarders, she’s filled to capacity.

So basically she had to raise her rates in order to be able to hire the extra person (or people) who will allow her to take in more than 50 dogs.

This just seems a little screwed up to me. Again, I don’t have a huge complaint about the extra $2.50 I have to pay, because I quite honestly wondered how they were making it, offering such a good deal! I’m just kind of peeved about the reason I have to pay the extra $2.50.

Of course, I guess the business she gets from the other boarders is good for her, otherwise couldn’t she just tell them where to shove their dogs? :wink:

OK. Thanks for listening.

I know I would be pretty pissed off if I boarded my dog with Boarder A, who then took said dog over to Boarder B without my knowledge or consent. Sounds like what is going on here.

Exactly. I mean, being on MY side of the fence (I now pay an extra $2.50 per night because of these other boarders), I of course just ranted on one side of this situation.

But you’re right!

Truthfully, I don’t know that this is what’s going on, but an educated guess would tell you it HAS to be–otherwise, the people boarding their dogs elsewhere could just have cut out the middleman and taken their dogs straight to the Daycare Lady.

It’s just kinda jacked up all around.

That’s pretty weird. It seems like she could offer a special rate to people that used her day-care option, and a higher rate to those that didn’t. Or she could offer a special rate for the first 3 animals someone has staying with her, and a higher rate for any additional animals. Or she could simply specify that her service was for individuals only, not for other businesses.

Still, $4 a night is a bargain.


Good suggestions, Daniel, and I thought about the special rate for individuals (who use the day-care) myself. Maybe it’d be a bookkeeping nightmare, or maybe she figures it’d just be easier to raise rates across the board than to deal with people who’d try to find a loophole or cheat the system???

Or hell, maybe it’s just easier for her (assuming she loses a little bit of business this way–I for one know that my dog will probably not sleep over as often with the $4 rate… not a reflection on their services, just a reflection on my poverty) to keep, say, 15 dogs at 4 bucks a night than 40 dogs at $1.50 a night?

I dunno,
that’s the way a business works.

You set up a price and people pay to use your services.

The 1.50 rate she set earlier is a valid price both to loyal users and to the border people.
I mean what exactly is the difference in that and say if an apartment building was built next door and now she is filled to capcity with new clients?

a client is a client, reagrdless.
I mean, she could raise the rates for the borders, but it kinda defeats the purpose. She’s in it for the money, I assume, other than simply loving dogs.

What she needs to do is advertise better to get the clients directly.

that said,
if it was my business and Auntie Em brings Toto in, I would not charge her the 4 buck fee. Makes for good business practice to please the tried and true regulars.

and I, too, would be livid if my Dogs were sent to another kennel without my knowing it.

Actually, Bad News Baboon, there is a strip club next door… but I don’t guess that gets her much business. :wink:

I suppose you’re right about a client being a client (and I’m sure that the other boarders are a significant portion of her bread & butter), but it still sucks that

a) some clients are making profits off of her services (OK, for all I know they’re not charging their customers any more than they’re paying ffor her services, but at any rate they’re not the ones dealing with howling dogs at 2 am), and that

b) some clients are ruining it for others.

And to be fair, I didn’t notice the price change for a couple of weeks (I saw that a sign had been put up listing prices, but figured it was just a new amenity), and so was writing her checks for a day of daycare plus the $1.50.

Then, when I actually bothered to READ the sign, I saw that oops! I’d been underpaying her for a couple of weeks, and bless her heart, she didn’t say a thing, and didn’t ask for backpay when I pointed it out. :slight_smile:

Another thing I wonder is who’s liable if you take Toto to Boarder A, who then takes him to Boarder B, and he gets his little ass ripped apart by Cujo while he’s in the care of Boarder B???

I would bet on Boarder A being liable, as that’s who I would have signed a contract with and trusted with the care of my precious angel. At least that’s who I would smite, yea verily, and inflict a pox upon their sensitive pink bits.

Okay, poison oak, not pox, but y’do what ya kin.

I don’t know how your kennel does things, but it at our vet clinic, when a boarder comes in they sign a boarding agreement. Basically, this states that the client places their animal in our care from date x to date y, and that we assume responsibility for the animal’ s well-being during that time. It also has an area to fill out your regular vet (for non-clients) and an option for care if your dog should get sick while staying with us. The only way an animal leaves our property is if it becomes ill and the owner wants us to transport it to another vet. NO reputable kennel would even dream of farming out boarders to someone else, if for no other reason than liability issues.
By the way, where in the world can you board a dog overnight for $4.00? We charge $12-$16 a night, depending on the dog’s weight, and there are some kennels that charge more than that.

I’m in Topeka, Kansas, if that tells you anything. :rolleyes:

Also, that $4.00 (formerly $1.50) is JUST for the overnight stay. For my dog to stay the day (I take her in at about 7:30 am and pick her up at about 5:30 pm) I pay anywhere from $9 to $15, depending on what kind of “package” I buy (I usually buy Six Visits for $66, thus paying $11.00 for every Daycare Day).

I always let them know in the morning if I’d like to leave her overnight, but even if I didn’t, they have a policy that if I’m not there to pick her up by a certain time (7:30, I think, but I’m always there by 5:30 if she’s not sleeping over, so I’m not sure), they’ll keep her, and charge for an overnight (which cost also includes a feeding). In addition, if I didn’t pick her up by noon on Saturday, they’d charge me for an extra Daycare Day.

I imagine that what these other boarders are doing are keeping their dogs at their own facilities all day, and then dropping them off in the evening, just to sleep (and maybe have dinner) at the other place.

At any rate, a day of daycare and a sleepover for Ezra (m’dawg) would run me from $13 to $19. But again, that’s dependent solely on the “visit package” I purchase, and not on her weight.

To be honest, I’m not sure what the sleeping arrangements are (whether each dog gets a private enclosure, or what), but I suspect that Ezra has full access to other pooches for All Night Ouija Board and Pillow Fight sessions, because when she stays the night, she comes home and sleeps as though… well… as though she hasn’t slept all night!

My point is that if these prices sound too cheap to you, that could be due to the fact that at your facility, each dog probably gets his/her own private quarters, which may not be the case at my place. Or maybe it is location…

Oh, and Tortuga, I’m cracking up over here! A pox upon their sensitive pink bits! Can I use that??? :smiley:

'Course ya can.
A doggie bounce whap-thwap-whapping with the front paws and a play bow butt-waggling from our little dog to yours. Even to the cranky one. (Sometimes Tahoe likes the cranky dogs best; he thinks they’re just funny looking Jack Russells and steps up “the bunny dance” to Riverdance/Tigger on Crack levels. )