BY ANNA DICKENS
My dog, Dolly, is smart. Every weekday morning, as soon as I start blow-drying my hair and putting my makeup on, she stares up at me with these big, solemn eyes, fully aware that I’m about to leave for work. I always feel a sense of tremendous guilt putting her in her kennel and saying goodbye.
Alas, for dog guardians with a nine-to-five job, the sad reality of working full-time is that it’s often necessary to leave your dog home alone for most of the day, which can take a toll on your dog’s physical and mental wellbeing. Innately social creatures, dogs crave interaction and can easily grow lonely if left alone for extended periods of time. Not to mention, boredom invariably leads to destructive, undesirable behaviors, which is why you might come home to chewed clothing or furniture. Additionally, while dogs are capable of holding their bladders for several hours, it can be uncomfortable for them, and they could even wind up with a urinary tract infection in some cases.
To assuage my work-related guilt, I’ll often drop Dolly off at doggy day camp in the morning so that she can frolic, romp, and play with other dogs while I punch away at my keyboard. While prices can run upwards of $20 for a full day session, you definitely get your bang for your buck—Dolly is always thoroughly tuckered out after a full day of daycare.
Below, we take a look at five local establishments offering the best daytime doggie daycare programs. These facilities offer a safe haven where your pet can socialize with other dogs and get plenty of exercise and fresh air.
The Farm at Natchez Trace (Franklin, TN)
Tucked in the rolling hills of Franklin, this sprawling, wood-enclosed farm is like heaven on earth for your furry friend. The facility offers two different day camp programs for dogs: “The Woof Club” is a group-play option, while “The Singular Dog” offers a one-on-one alternative for less social or injured pups. At The Farm, the entire day is spent playing in a fully-fenced field or in an all-season indoor/outdoor Barnyard. One thing is for certain: your dog will have the time of her life!
My Second Home Pet Resort (Franklin, TN)
Located in the bustling Cool Springs area, My Second Home offers top-notch daycare for your dog. The state-of-the-art facility boasts 7,000 square feet of indoor space and nearly two acres of creek-side grassy property for your dog to run and explore. They also offer special accommodations for small breeds and puppies, so you don’t have to worry about your teacup poodle getting trampled on. Another perk? The business opens as early as 6:30 am, so you can drop off your dog on the way to a big breakfast meeting.
Doggy Rotten Daycare (Nashville, TN)
Is your dog ready to rock? Spoil your pet rotten at Doggy Rotten Daycare (formerly the Bark-O-Lounge), which is locally owned and operated in the heart of Nashville. This facility is 100% kennel-free for non-stop fun. Plus, the business is committed to using only non-toxic and environmentally-friendly cleaning products. Non-stinky and eco-friendly? It’s a win-win! Plus, they offer a free trial day when you mention that you heard about them in Nashville Paw!
Camp Bow Wow (Nashville, TN)
Long work day? No time to walk your dog? Rather than consigning your dog to a crate all day, go about your workday guilt-free with Camp Bow Wow, a premier boarding and daycare facility located in Berry Hill. The daycare’s website offers an awesome live web cam so you can check up on your dog’s goings-on from your cubicle.
Safari Pet Resort (Murfreesboro, TN)
As this facility’s name suggests, Safari Pet Resort isn’t your typical dog camp—it’s an adventure. Complete with faux palm trees and a saltwater swimming pool, this premium boarding and daycare resort is a super-posh getaway for your dog. In addition to fun daily activities (such as a dip in their outdoor pool when temps are right!) your pooch pal will also receive a complimentary treat with their stay. Feeling left out? You can witness all of the fun from the website’s dog cam.