Every dog that comes to our facility must have veterinary records proving they are current on rabies, distemper (dhpp) and bordetella (kennel cough) vaccines, per the NYC Health Department. ID tags on the collar alone will not meet the Health Department’s requirements, unfortunately. If your dog is medically exempt from a vaccine due to a health condition, your vet can provide a letter with this information in lieu of the vaccine.
We average about 20 dogs per day, but our numbers fluctuate based on the time of year. During holiday periods, numbers generally increase as our customers’ need for boarding increases. Rather than looking at the number of dogs we have, we cap new reservations based on the specific dogs that are booked, examining their temperament, energy, and our ability to safely add others in their company.
Yes, but we ask that you set up an appointment. Because dogs can get anxious around new people, we want to plan your visit for a time that best meets our daily activities — that way you’ll get the best view of what we have to offer!
We use crates and separated spaces that we call "suites" as a tool to maintain safety and to give your dog a better experience throughout the day and overnight. Dogs that stay with us for boarding generally do well sleeping in bed with our overnight caretaker or choosing dog bedding available to them throughout the space, but some dogs are more likely to settle down and remain calm in their own independent space. For daycare, we utilize these spaces during our nap time (1-3 pm) as well as to give dogs a break when they are showing signs of fatigue or annoyance with other dogs after playing for some time. It is also a tool used to give short time-outs for nuisance behaviors amongst the group. For grooming, dogs are not crated before or after their appointment unless they do not do well with other dogs. We do also have (non-heated) cage air fans available for dogs who will not tolerate a traditional table dryer or are scared of the noise. In a nutshell: We are not cage-free 100% of the time, but during the short breaks your dog may have in a crate or separated area, he or she will have water, be in the line of sight of our caretaker, and will be brought back into the group as soon as it makes sense to do so. We do not accept dogs that need to be separated from the group at large for more than these short breaks; if this seems necessary we will make recommendations for facilities where your dog may be more comfortable.
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We accept cash and all major credit cards. We can take checks from customers of one year or more.
Absolutely. We have trained staff on both levels of our facility throughout the day, and an overnight caretaker for the dogs staying with us at night.
Yes. If the medication is orally administered, this is no issue for our staff, though we will ask for instruction on how to best get your dog to ingest the full dosage. For more complicated medications, such as injections, we may require a training session and a $5 daily fee will be added.
Yes, but please let our staff know if someone other than yourself will be picking up. If another individual will be doing pickups or drops off on a regular basis, just let us know his/her name so we can mark that person as authorized for pick up in your dog’s file.
Yes, this is a requirement for all dogs staying with us past seven months of age. Around this point, hormones kick in and a dog who is not spayed or neutered will have a scent that other dogs notice quickly. This can cause aggression from other dogs, even if your dog is friendly. We still accept un-neutered/spayed dogs for our grooming service but ask that you alert us to this information before you bring your dog in; that way we can take every precaution to ensure your dog’s safety.
Yes we do! We have a backyard with outdoor turf, benches, a slide and a beds where the dogs can play, relax, and sunbathe when the weather is pleasant. Throughout the year, we also use this outdoor space for potty breaks. We encourage dogs to keep up good bathroom habits by maintaining pee/poop (which we refer to as “#1” and “#2”) for outside only. Though we of course have occasional accidents, our outdoor-only bathroom policy helps us keep a sanitary, non-stinky daycare! For dogs that are not used to going to the bathroom outdoors, we do have a wee-wee pad station set up. Dogs boarding with us are also walked in our local neighborhood in addition to the time they spend in our yard. We do not bring out dogs only visiting for grooming, so please make sure your pup goes to the bathroom before his or her appointment!
Sadly, no. Our facility is not set up to accommodate dogs with dog-aggression or those who cannot be around other dogs for any reason. We have a free moving, open space and do not isolate dogs. If your inquiry is regarding boarding, we do offer a pet sitting service in which a staff member can stay at your home, eliminating this problem.
For daycare, pre-paid packages provide the best bang for your buck. For boarding, we do offer a pre-paid package good for 25 days which takes 10% off the total. This package is good for one full year, and is our best value. Stays lasting over seven days also qualify for 10% off any grooming service. We do not offer any other discounts on grooming.
If you are delayed or it seems you may not make it by our closing time and do not have an emergency contact who can do so for you, we ask that you inform us ASAP so that we can determine a solution. The most ideal method would be to drop your dog at home, but for this we will need to make key arrangements in advance. We encourage you to leave a set with us if you think this may be a problem for you on occasion. On days when we have an overnight staff member present, we may also be able to arrange for this person to bring your dog out to you when you arrive past our closing hour, however you will incur late pickup fees, and we can only offer this as an option until 9 pm. If neither of these are an option, your dog will need to be picked up the next day and you will be charged the full boarding rate for the time we spend caring for your pup.
We’re so glad you asked! Our doggy daycare days are structured so your dog gets maximum exercise, a chance to rest, outdoor and indoor time, and plenty of one-on-one attention. Dogs are matched based on their temperament and energy level and we encourage romping around, wrestling, and enjoying time with their fellow canines. This socialization is great for your dog’s physical and emotional needs — they stay active and learn cues about how to behave with others. Monday-Friday, from 1-3 pm, we also have nap time, where dogs who have been with us from the morning get a chance to take a break and relax. Dogs are meant to sleep for a portion of the day, so this helps them meet that physical need and prevents agitation from lack of rest. During nap time we put on soft music, turn the lights down, and arrange everybody in quarters that will allow for maximum comfort. The latter half of the day is spent much the same as the first, though dogs usually get tired again as we move into the evening — that’s when we have the most opportunity to spend one-on-one time and form a greater bond with each of our furry friends. Yes, we love to snuggle them, too!
For the most part, yes. Our upstairs level is reserved for littles, tinies, and puppies. We may also have some mellow loungers that are bigger in size in this area. At the same time, we have medium to small sized dogs who play very well with bigger dogs and can’t get enough of the action, so if the group on a particular day is accommodating we may allow littler pups to join those groups as appropriate. That being said, we are aware that teeny dogs and extra large dogs, even when both playing nicely, may not make the best play partners and accidental injury can occur, so we take extra precaution about where each and every one of our canine guests best fits depending on the day.
We allow puppies to begin socializing at the 13-week mark. He or she should have the full first round of vaccinations complete and be deemed healthy and able to socialize by your veterinarian. All required vaccines (rabies, DHPP and bordetella) should be administered at appropriate age markers thereafter. We also require that your dog be spayed or neutered by seven months of age to continue in daycare or boarding.
Yes, we do, but our pick up/drop off service is limited in its coverage area. This is because we pick up and drop off most dogs on foot, meaning you must live within a walkable distance from our facility. Occasionally we are able to accommodate pick up/drop offs by car for longer distances or for animals who cannot walk the distance from home, but this must be arranged with our staff in advance. Further, we cannot guarantee availability to provide pick up/drop off without at least 24 hours notice, and our time windows may vary depending on the staff member providing the service.
At present, we are not asking for reservations for daycare for regular clients (those attending at least two times a week). When your dog is first introduced to daycare, we may ask you to set up appointments for daycare until we know your dog well and no longer have to plan to introduce new staff members to him/her. For more randomly-attending daycare clients, we ask that you call or email to let us know about your need for daycare at least 24 hours in advance.
Sure! Just like people, not every dog is going to be super social or playful. That doesn’t mean he or she can’t benefit from spending time around other canines, or having watchful humans around while mom and dad are at work. We are happy to have a pup who prefers to hang with people as long as he or she can be in the company of other dogs without aggressive behavior.
Yes, we have water available in every room!
Yes. Please bring the pre-portioned meal with you when you drop your dog off. We do not charge extra for this service, as long as you provide the meal.
Most dogs will be tired after a full day of play! It is not unexpected to find that your dog wants to drink a lot of water and snooze! Some dogs may be excited to see you and still playful at pickup (to show you what he’s been doing all day ;)) but then crash at home.
When dogs are grouped together, we must supervise them carefully at all times. Nuisance behaviors (from otherwise good dogs) that require correction include rough play, excessive barking or howling, excessive mounting, jumping or lunging inappropriately, and/or nipping. We always first attempt to correct these behaviors vocally — getting the dog’s attention with their name and a firm command. If the dog persists, we may use other forms of noise to halt the behavior, such as shaking a can of coins or spraying canned pressurized air which makes a hissing sound that attracts attention. We may also separate the dog temporarily, leash him or her and ask for a sit, gentle touching, or move the dog to a different area entirely. We do also employ squirt bottles with water for when bad behaviors persist despite multiple corrections. Most dogs respond to a splash of water and we find it is especially useful when two dogs are playing rough and their attention is not on the person supervising.
All dogs passing through our facility are fully vaccinated for rabies, distemper and bordetella, no exceptions! Having the vaccinations for your pup helps prevent them from spreading these diseases from one dog to another. Of course, just like when people socialize, when dogs spend time with other dogs, they may be exposed to doggy colds or other bacteria that they cannot be vaccinated against. Further, vaccines are not foolproof. The bordetella (kennel cough) vaccine, for example, targets the most common strains of doggy flu but other strains do exist, and we have seen kennel cough spread even when dogs are vaccinated — and even when they don’t come to daycare; they may have just met another dog on the street! Long story short: We take every measure to keep things sanitary and clean to deter germs spreading but there’s always some risk that your pup could pick something up at daycare, especially if he or she is young and the immune system is still developing. The good news is that the body’s immunity general benefits from learning how to fight these bugs. Plus, we think the benefits of doggy daycare far outweigh the risk of a cold — it’s the same reason we brave crowded subways and bustling social events
Our facility is set up for your dog to spend the night cage-free in bed with our overnight staff member, on a comfy dog bed, or in a separate suite space if they prefer to be a bit independent. If your dog is trained to sleep in a crate at night or simply prefers it, we do have crates available. During especially busy times, such as over the December holidays, we may select shy, sensitive or nervous dogs to spend the night at an insured staff member’s home rather than in the facility; this helps us to ensure the dog’s comfort and reduces the demand on our overnight staff. Similarly, on nights when we have two or fewer dogs booked for boarding, your pup may spend an overnight at a staff member’s home and return to our facility in the morning.
Plan to bring your dog in with a collar and leash/any walking equipment you use as well as regular food and any medications. You do not need to bring bowls or toys as we do not share these items and have plenty of our own. You are welcome to bring a small comfort item such as a blanket if it will make your dog more comfortable, but do be advised that other dogs may try to use it, too!
We strongly recommend against changing your dog’s food and like to keep them on their regular diet to prevent any digestive troubles. In the event of an emergency, we do have American Journey (salmon) kibble in stock.
The best way to see updates on your dog’s stay is to follow us on Instagram or Facebook(let us know if you have a handle that we can tag you in when we post your dog’s photo!). Please be patient: If you don’t see your dog in our photos right away, it doesn’t mean your dog is not enjoying his or herself — just that we’re focusing on taking good care of your furry friend! You can also feel free to check in by phone or email if you are not on social media and we will get back to you with an update.
Boarding dogs are let out into our backyard several times throughout the day with the other dogs who are in for daycare. If you would like your dog to be given a mid-day walk on leash, you may request one for an additional $10 per day.
In the event of illness or injury, we always contact you and/or your emergency contact immediately to advise you of the situation and to make decisions about next steps. Should your dog need urgent medical care, Animal Loving Care does have a working relationship with a 24 hour emergency vet. For less pressing matters, we will seek your counsel on whether you would like us to bring your dog in for a vet visit at your expense.
We aim to please, but please know that the look you hope to get depends on a few factors: your dog's current coat condition, length of hair, and how you explain the style to us. We have length reference charts available for you to review at the Spaw, and relevant pictures. We have written a more detailed guide on getting what you want from the groomer for doodle and poodle owners, but a lot of it applies to all dogs! Please have a read!
It depends what service you choose! A full groom, the most common choice, gives you the works: a bath, brush out, stylized haircut, nail trimming, ear cleaning, paw pad cleanup, and sanitary shave. Other options, like anal gland expression or teeth cleaning, can be done as add-ons.
Dog grooming involves many steps and requires time and patience. For dogs requiring haircuts, small breeds like shihtzus and maltese generally take 2 to 2 1/2 hours, mid-size dogs such as cocker spaniels three hours, and larger breeds 3 1/2 hours plus. Those coming in for de-shed treatments, mini-grooms, or bath services will require less time than a haircut. Your dog’s behavior and coat condition will also be factors in how much time we need. We can give you our best estimate when you drop off.
In 2012, the New York City Department of health updated it’s vaccine requirements for dog grooming to include bordetella (kennel cough) after outbreaks of the condition occurred in several grooming shops.
No. Your presence makes it much harder for us to get the animal to cooperate with the groom, as they will want to get to you. We ask that you drop off your pet and return when we are done to pick up. We will call you within 20 to 30 minutes of completion.
Grooming prices are based on your pet's size, coat type, coat condition, behavior, and any add-ons you choose. Grooming an animal is not easy – that’s why you’re going to a skilled professional! It is time-consuming, dirty, and hard manual work. The more difficult your pet is in terms of behavior or condition, the harder that work is. We price accordingly.
Yes, we do offer grooming for non-aggressive, tolerant cats. Cat grooming options include brush outs, shave downs (lion cut), and baths. While most cats do not have the same level of patience as a dog when it comes to grooming, your cat must at least be able to sit on the table without attempting to scratch or bite the groomer throughout the process. Aggressive cats must be sedated for grooming — which we do not offer in our facility — and are therefore best suited for grooming at a vet’s office.
Most dogs with long hair are best suited for grooming every 6 to 8 weeks with interim brushing at home. If you brush the coat on a daily basis, sometimes grooms can be spaced out further. Do note, however, that grooming is not simply for aesthetics — it is a matter of hygiene and health. All dogs require grooming on a regular basis. We offer free toothbrushing and gland expression with every groom if you put your pet on a regular pre-booked schedule with us (and do not cancel the appointment).
No, we groom by appointment only.
Generally we can accept walk-ins for nail trims but we’d appreciate a heads up phone call. Also, sometimes our groomers finish or start at different hours depending on the day’s appointments.
Yes! De-shedding treatments can make a world of difference for heavy shedders and we are experts at this.
If your dog is good or indifferent with other dogs you can add daycare to his spa day for a discounted rate of $20.
It depends how bad the matting is. De-matting is essentially ripping through knots in the coat – and it hurts! If there is a small section of mats, we may be able to work through it. Widespread matting means your dog will need to be cut short for his comfort.
Our groomer will spend time with you at drop off to ensure we understand your desires. This is the best time to present photos or other references that will help us get the cut right. While we would like to think you’ll always be thrilled with the outcome, please don’t hesitate to let us know at the time of pick up if there’s anything more we can do to adjust the haircut. We want you to walk away happy! Ears still too long or you prefer more shaping on the muzzle? We are happy to fix. Any further concerns can be addressed to the owner (Adrienne) by phone or email.
Yes, please. Dog grooming is similar to having your hair cut at a salon. The typical recommended gratuity is 20% of the cost.
If you need to change or cancel your appointment we ask that you please give us 24 hours notice so that we may inform the groomer and open up the slot for another customer. If you cancel with less notice, you will be subject to a $50 cancellation fee. If you book an appointment and do not show up, you will be subject to the full grooming cost. Please let us know as soon as you can! We send both an email and text reminder to give you ample time to cancel if needed.
Never. If your dog requires sedation to be groomed, please consult a veterinarian. Sometimes people ask this question because their dog seems tired after grooming. This is a normal reaction after being asked to sit, listen, and remain still for several hours.
Our groups include up to four dogs at a time or fewer. We try to match dogs with similar walking styles. Safety is a huge concern for us so we never pack a walk with more dogs than one walker can safely handle.
Our peak walking hours are 11 AM to 4 PM. Off-peak walks are available by special arrangement.
We are not offering solo walks for new clients. Occasionally an existing group walk client may need temporary solo walks due to illness or injury and for this we can make special arrangements.
Our dog walkers currently service Carroll Gardens, Cobble Hill, Columbia Street Waterfront and some parts of Gowanus, Red Hook and Park Slope in Brooklyn. Please see our coverage map below this FAQ section.
We work as a team, which means that 2 to 3 people may get to know and walk your dog. This allows for better and more secure coverage.
Your keys will be stored securely in a lockbox at our storefront and/or with your most frequent dog walker. If possible, we recommend providing two sets of your keys so we always have a backup.
We will send you a text message through our customer portal, PetExec. We will let you know which dogs he or she walked with, any highlights from the walk, if he or she did #1 or #2 and any concerns (i.e. if the stool was loose).
Once you have scheduled a first time consultation we will ask for your expected needs. If, for example, you’ll require daily weekday walks, we will automatically put your dog in Monday through Friday within the time slot you approve. If your schedule will be more random, we will add you to our weekly walk request list and solicit your walk needs at the end of the week prior. To add additional walks or to cancel a walk, simply send your request to us by email and our walking manager will confirm as soon as possible.
Please shoot us an email (or use the form below this FAQ section) with the details of your needs! We will want to know your dog’s name, age, breed, and experience walking with other dogs. We will also need your address and suggestions on a good date and time for an initial consultation. Consultations must be scheduled at least two days prior to your dog’s first walk with us.
All requests related to walking should be made via email. For cancellations, we ask that you give us at least 12 hours notice so we may inform the walker and update our schedules. Walks canceled with less than 12 hours notice must still be paid in full.
Yes, we do. Puppy visits are 40 minutes long and we can feed and spend time with your puppy as you see fit.
Most of our walks are completed by 5 PM, however we are happy to check the availability of our walkers to accommodate off-peak requests. The more notice you give, the more likely we will be able to accommodate. Do be advised that off-peak walks are charged at a separate rate.
Walks are charged at our holiday rate on the following days:
- Thanksgiving Day (fourth Thursday of November)
- Christmas Eve (12/24)
- Christmas Day (12/25)
- Boxing Day (12/26)
- New Years Day (1/1)
- Independence Day (7/4)
- Labor Day (first Monday in September)
- Memorial Day (last Monday of May)