How to Pick a Dog Hotel
First it must be said not all dog hotels are created equal. I have to recommend that you pick a legal and licensed Dog Hotel, Animal Protection will have at least done some cursory checks. They will have a certificate and their adverts should display a license number.
Having said that, what should you look for and what questions should you ask ?
1 Is someone on site 24/7, this is not a legal requirement. it should be. Hundreds ( literally ) of dogs have died in accidents in Taipei and New Taipei in the last 2 years, all could have been avoided if someone was on site. All.
2 How many staff do you have. This figure will tell you a lot about the hotel. Assuming a 6 day working week. Just to have 1 person on site for the 3, 8 hour shifts each day, requires 3.5 full time staff. Thats just to have 1 person there 24/7. If they have a pick up drop off service they need more staff.
If they walk the dogs, they need a lot more staff. 3 walks a day , 20 mins each time is an hour per dog. if the Want to add a caption to this image? Click the Settings icon. y have 20 dogs that is 3 people walking all day long. And you would want another member of staff in the hotel at all times, to make sure the dogs are safe and to meet and greet clients.
Days off, sick cover, holidays. You need a lot of staff to run a dog hotel safely.
I always check the facebook posts and see how many staff are in the pictures too.
3 How are the dogs housed, I definitely want individual sleeping and eating areas,there is a growing trend here in Taiwan, for free for all housing. Its a bit like nuclear power, its great until it goes wrong. And again going back to point 2, if there are not enough staff, who will break up the fight ?
I would never put my dog in a stacked system of crates or kennels. Dogs do not like another dog above them, it is a recipe for stress and possibly worse. I understand that space is at a premium, but that is the business owners problem, your concern should be for your dog. Avoid any kennel that stacks dogs one on top of the other.
4 Is there CCTV where i can watch my dogs? If not why not, is the question you should ask. Its very cheap to install nowadays. Im always a little bit concerned when these are not in place, particularly when no expense has been spared elsewhere. I'd be asking is my dog really going out of his kennel as much as i am told, especially if staffing is low.
I would ask my friends and colleagues for recommendations, but i would still ask these questions and more. They should give you an insight into the ethics behind the business. Staffing, space etc is all a cost. If they cut corners here their motive is more money than the dogs well being.