Daycare, Boarding & Training Policy Overview

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The Board Hound was created to allow dogs to play, learn, and socialize in a fear-free environment. Our goal is to build confidence and teach appropriate social behavior between dogs. The Board Hound and its employees use only force-free and fear-free methods in all services provided. These methods are science based, modern, and humane. These methods are recommended by the ASVAB, APDT, AKC, CCPDT, and Humane Society of the United States. The Board Hound and its employees will never use methods involving the use of shock collars, prong collars, choke collars, spray bottles, hoses, dominance/alpha theory, intimidation, harm, or force.

Daycare Requirements & Operational Policies

Daycare Evaluation & Enrollment Status: An initial evaluation and at least 4 hours of daycare participation (trial day of daycare) is required prior to being enrolled into daycare. All dogs must be dog friendly, human friendly, and show appropriate behavior during the evaluation to be accepted for daycare services. The evaluation requirement is free of charge and must be completed prior to scheduling future daycare services. Furthermore, each dog must attend daycare with The Board Hound at least once every 6 months in order to maintain their active status for daycare participation. Daycare is offered at our Shirlington and Old Town locations. Please visit https://theboardhound.com/getting-started/ to begin the enrollment process for daycare and boarding.

Continuing Daycare Evaluation: All dogs are continuously evaluated while participating in daycare. Behavioral changes are monitored and may result in your dog’s removal from group play, temporarily or permanently, as we see fit. Any behavioral concerns will be addressed with the dog’s owner(s).

Daycare Reservations & Cancelation Policy: Daycare reservations are required in advance for both locations. Please visit https://theboardhound.com/reservations/ to view current daycare availability for each location. Reservation requests should be sent to shirlington@theboardhound.com or oldtown@theboardhound.com, per location. Reservations for daycare can be made as far in advance as needed and can be scheduled as recurring reservations as well. Any daycare reservations cancelled after 5 pm the day before the reservation will be subject to the current half-day rate. The cancelation policy does not apply to active Unlimited Package holders.

Age Requirement: All dogs must be at least 10 weeks old at the time of their daycare evaluation. For dogs under the age of 16 weeks, a virtual training consultation (via ZoomTM) will be required prior to scheduling a daycare evaluation.

Spay/Neuter Status: All dogs participating in daycare over the age of six (6) months must be spayed or neutered.

Vaccines & Veterinarian Status: The owner must provide up to date copies of their dog’s vaccine records showing that Rabies, Distemper, and Bordetella vaccines are current to participate in daycare. Titer testing is also accepted. Rabies is not required for dogs under the age of 16 weeks. The Canine Influenza vaccine is recommended, but not required. If you wish to have any vaccines waived for medical reasons, or otherwise, please contact us to discuss those policies and options. Dogs who are vaccinated for Bordetella must be vaccinated at least 48 hours prior to participating in daycare or boarding. The Bordetella vaccine does not protect against other upper respiratory infections. Please consult with your vet for information on these illnesses. We require all dogs be in good standing with their vet, and be in good health, in order to attend daycare. All updated vaccines and relevant health information should be emailed or faxed to The Board Hound as this information is updated.

Health: For the health and safety of all the dogs in our facility, we ask that dogs do not attend daycare if they are showing any signs of illness including, but not limited to, cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and/ or fatigue. If a dog begins showing symptoms of illness after drop-off, they may be isolated at The Board Hound’s discretion. In these cases, the owner will be called to pick up their dog.

Rest Time: A mandatory rest time for dogs during daycare hours is not widely enforced. However, please understand that we will provide rest time to any dog for which rest is necessary as determined by the staff. This is for the safety and health of your dog and all the dogs in our care. It is expected that all dogs will rest throughout the day.

RoofTop Play (Shirlington): RoofTop Play at the Shirlington location is a privilege for dogs that are appropriate during all aspects of RoofTop Play and only if they enjoy participating in RoofTop Play. If at any point your dog starts to display inappropriate or concerning behaviors while participating in RoofTop Play, they will be removed immediately. Furthermore, for safety reasons, if your dog is less than 10 lbs., young in age, senior in age, and/or brachycephalic, they may not be considered for participation in RoofTop Play. The Board Hound reserves the right to determine whether your dog is appropriate for RoofTop Play. Considering factors include preexisting injuries, arousal levels, anxiety, ability/attempt to jump a 6 foot enclosure, age, weight, breed, and external conditions such as weather. These factors can change on a day-to-day basis, but we will always prioritize safety. RoofTop Play may be operated on a seasonal basis. Weather conditions can affect the operational status of RoofTop Play at any time.

Outdoor Play (Old Town): Outdoor Play at the Old Town location is covered and has access to climate control space. It is used similarly to the indoor play areas and is not as gravely impacted by weather conditions. However, The Board Hound does take similar considerations to the RoofTop Play policies to ensure safety standards are upheld.

Collars: For the dogs’ safety, all dogs will be provided with a quick release collar while in our facility, as needed. We do not allow owner provided collars or harnesses to be worn during daycare participation.

Bedding & Belongings: Bedding, toys, bowls, and other belongings will not be accepted for daycare.

Lunch (optional): Owner provided lunch can be provided to any dog upon request at no charge. Providing lunch is not required. If lunch is provided by the owner, the lunch should be labeled with the dog’s name. Any uneaten food will be returned to the dog’s owner at pick up. If house food is requested, there will be a $2 fee, per meal. Lunch, treats, or other food will not be provided to any dog unless requested by the owner. For safety reasons, we will not accept treats or chews that pose a choking hazard to your dog. Breakfast and dinner cannot be provided to daycare dogs unless it is medically necessary.

Medication: Medication can be administered as instructed at no additional charge. All medication should be appropriately labeled with the dog’s name and any instructions as needed.

Bath & Nail Trims: It is required all daycare dogs’ nails be appropriately trimmed, and their fur is reasonably clean prior to drop off. The Board Hound reserves the right to provide nail trims and baths, as necessary, and charge the account for the cost of the service. This service can also be accommodated upon request at the cost of the service. We will be able to perform these services so long as your dog allows us to do so. We will not be able to complete these services if your dog is overwhelmed. We are not able to accommodate requests for haircuts or anal gland expression.

Walks: Walks are offered as an add-on service to daycare and boarding stays as requested. Walks (15 minutes each) can be accommodated up to 4 times per day and are administered at 7am, 11am, 3pm, and 7pm at the owner’s request and are charged per owner-requested walk.

Standard Daycare Packages: Standard Daycare Packages can be purchased  are all full day packages and expire after 1 year from the dates of purchase. Daycare packages above cannot be applied to boarding stays, and will only be applied to half-day visits, if requested. Additional Dog Daycare Packages can be purchased at equal or lesser value, and will only be applied if both dogs are attending daycare. While clients can use services at either location, standard daycare packages are not transferable between locations.

Unlimited Monthly Daycare Packages: Includes complimentary early drop-off, a daily standing reservation for daycare for the package duration with no requirement to cancel, and is applied to boarding stays. Unlimited daycare packages can be purchased at any time, and will expire 30 days from the date of purchase. This package is only recommended for frequent daycare users. Unlimited packages from Old Town will be applied to weekend daycare and any boarding at the Shirlington location.

Daycare Services & Pricing: Please visit https://theboardhound.com/pricing/ for current prices and services.

Boarding Requirements & Operational Policies

Boarding Evaluation & Enrollment Status: All boarding dogs will be required to pass an evaluation per the daycare evaluation requirements (see Daycare Requirements & Operational Policies above). All boarding dogs must be dog friendly, human friendly, and show appropriate behavior during the daycare evaluation to be accepted for boarding services. Since boarding is only provided at the Shirlington location, all boarding dogs must attend daycare or boarding at least once every 6 months at our Shirlington location to maintain active status for boarding. If your evaluation was completed at the Old Town location, at least a half day of daycare will be required at our Shirlington location prior to scheduling a boarding reservation and subject to the daycare rate.

Continuing Boarding Evaluation: All dogs are continuously evaluated while participating in boarding. Behavioral changes are monitored and may result in your dog’s removal from group play, temporarily or permanently, as we see fit. Furthermore, overnight behaviors such as anxiety, skipping meals in excess, and a lack of water intake may result in dismissal from boarding services. Any behavioral concerns will be addressed with the dog’s owner(s) during the boarding stay as seen fit.

Boarding Status Requirements: If it has been more than 6 months since the dogs’ last daycare or boarding visit, participation in a scheduled full or half day of daycare at our Shirlington location will be required in order to make a boarding reservation and will be subject to the daycare rate.

Boarding Reservations & Cancelation Policy: Boarding reservations are required in advance. Please visit https://theboardhound.com/reservations/ to view current boarding availability. Reservation requests should be sent to shirlington@theboardhound.com. There is no penalty for canceling non-holiday boarding reservations (See holiday information regarding cancelation policy for holiday reservations).

Age Requirement: All dogs must be at least 10 weeks old at the time of their daycare evaluation, and at least 10 weeks old prior to scheduling a boarding reservation.

Spay/Neuter Status: All dogs participating in boarding over the age of six (6) months must be spayed or neutered.

Vaccines & Veterinarian Status: The owner must provide up to date copies of their dog’s vaccine records showing that Rabies, Distemper, and Bordetella vaccines are current to participate in boarding. Titer testing is also accepted. Rabies is not required for dogs under the age of 16 weeks. The Canine Influenza vaccine is recommended, but not required. If you wish to have any vaccines waived for medical reasons, or otherwise, please contact us to discuss those policies and options. Dogs who are vaccinated for Bordetella must be vaccinated at least 48 hours prior to participating in boarding. The Bordetella vaccine does not protect against other upper respiratory infections. Please consult with your vet for information on these illnesses. We require all dogs be in good standing with their vet, and be in good health, in order to attend boarding. All updated vaccines and relevant health information should be emailed or faxed to The Board Hound as this information is updated.

Health: For the health and safety of all the dogs in our facility, we ask that dogs do not attend boarding if they are showing any signs of illness including, but not limited to, cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and/ or fatigue. If a dog begins showing symptoms of illness after drop-off, they may be isolated at The Board Hound’s discretion. In these cases, the owner will be called to pick up their dog.

Daycare Participation & Rest Time: All boarding dogs participate in daycare while enrolled into boarding. Rest time will be provided to any dog for which rest is necessary as determined by the staff. This is for the safety and health of your dog and all the dogs in our care. It is expected that all dogs will rest throughout the day.

Overnight: Each dog is provided with a private, or semi-private, space to rest in the overnight hours. The space in which your dog is assigned is determined by the staff. Special requests will be considered, but not guaranteed. All dogs are assigned overnight space that meets the individual needs of each dog. During the overnight hours, an overnight staff is always present. However, they are not permitted to take in dogs, release dogs, or unlock the building for any reason. This is for safety and security reasons. Please do not attempt to pick up or drop off your dog during the overnight hours.

Collars: For the dogs’ safety, all dogs will be provided with a quick release collar while in our facility, as needed. We do not allow owner provided collars or harnesses to be worn during boarding participation.

Bedding & Belongings: Each boarding suite contains an elevated cot, and The Board Hound will provide bedding to boarding dogs as needed or upon request. It is encouraged to take advantage of this complimentary service, but if you plan to bring belongings, please limit these belongings to one (1) small blanket/towel, and one (1) chew toy/bone per dog. For safety reasons, we will not accept plush toys, dog beds, or comforters. We also have a limited amount of space to store belongings so we will also not accept multiple toys, large/bulky bedding, or food & water bowls. For all holidays and holiday weekends (see holiday schedule) we will not accept any belongings for boarding unless prior approval has been obtained.

Meals: Meals for boarding dogs are fed up to 3 times per day (approximate times: 6am, 12pm, 7pm). It is recommended to provide the dog’s own food while boarding. If providing your dog’s own food, it is required that each meal (including canned food) be individually packaged, per dog, and each bag is labeled with the dog’s name. Raw, wet and/or dry food is accepted and can be refrigerated, or frozen, if necessary. A bagging fee of $2 per meal will be added if meals are not individually packaged. Treats are welcome, but please do not provide treats that pose a choking hazard (i.e. rawhide, etc.). Treats can be included with the meal or bagged separately as a snack. If you choose not to provide food for your dog, house food will be provided at $2 per meal. Uneaten meals will be returned. Mix-ins (water, pumpkin, peanut butter, canned tuna, etc.) may be added to a meal to encourage your dog to eat as staff sees fit.

Medication: Medication can be administered as instructed at no additional charge. All medication should be appropriately labeled and in the original packages/bottles with the dog’s name and instructions.

Bath & Nail Trims: It is required all boarding dogs’ nails be appropriately trimmed, and their fur is reasonably clean prior to drop off. The Board Hound reserves the right to provide nail trims and baths, as necessary, and charge the account for the cost of the service. This service can also be accommodated upon request at the cost of the service. We will be able to perform these services so long as your dog allows us to do so. We will not be able to complete these services if your dog is overwhelmed. We are not able to accommodate requests for haircuts or anal gland expression.

Walks: Walks are offered as an add-on service to daycare and boarding stays as requested. Walks (15 minutes each) can be accommodated up to 4 times per day and are administered at 7am, 11am, 3pm, and 7pm at the owner’s request and are charged per owner-requested walk.

Boarding Services & Pricing: Please visit https://theboardhound.com/pricing/ for current prices and services.

Training Requirements & Operational Policies

Training Consultation & Enrollment Status: A training consultation via ZoomTM is required prior to scheduling Private Training, Play School, and Board & Train services. Please visit https://theboardhound.com/getting-started/ to begin the enrollment process for training.

Age Requirement: There is no minimum age requirement for private training.

Spay/Neuter Status: There is no spay/neuter requirement for training consultations or private training. Daycare participation requirements (see Daycare Requirements & Operational Policies above) are required for Play School registration and participation. Boarding participation requirements (see Boarding Requirements & Operational Policies above) are required for Board & Train registration and participation.

Vaccines & Veterinarian Status: The owner must provide up to date copies of their dog’s vaccine records showing that Rabies, Distemper, and Bordetella vaccines are current to participate in training services. Titer testing is also accepted. Rabies is not required for dogs under the age of 16 weeks. The Canine Influenza vaccine is recommended, but not required. If you wish to have any vaccines waived for medical reasons, or otherwise, please contact us to discuss those policies and options. Dogs who are vaccinated for Bordetella must be vaccinated at least 48 hours prior to participating in boarding. The Bordetella vaccine does not protect against other upper respiratory infections. Please consult with your vet for information on these illnesses. We require all dogs be in good standing with their vet, and be in good health, in order to attend boarding. All updated vaccines and relevant health information should be emailed or faxed to The Board Hound as this information is updated.

Health: For the health and safety of all dogs and trainers, we ask that dogs and their owners not attend training services if they are showing any signs of illness including, but not limited to, cough, vomiting, diarrhea, and/ or fatigue. It is also recommended that your private training sessions be rescheduled. If a dog or owner begins showing symptoms of illness during a class or session, the session may be ended early at the owner’s expense.

Equipment: It is required that appropriate training equipment (leash, collar, harness, etc.) be provided by the owner for all Private Training, Group Classes, Play School, Board & Train, and Workshops. Recommended equipment includes a front clip harness, flat collar or flat martingale, and a 6-foot flat leash. Recommendations from the trainer will be provided and can vary to accommodate the individual dog and/or training goals. However, The Board Hound will not accept or use retractable leashes, shock collars, chain collars, or prong collars.

Treats: A high-value training treat is required for all training services. If not provided by the owner, house treats will be provided at cost.

Training Services & Pricing: Please visit https://theboardhound.com/pricing/ for current prices and services.

Holiday Information

Holidays: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Day, Presidents Day, Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day are the holidays that may impact our daycare, boarding, and/or training schedules.

Holiday Schedules: Daycare closures, hours of operation, and training class schedules may be impacted on and around the date of any holiday listed above. Please visit https://theboardhound.com/calendars/ to review the current holiday schedule.

  • Daycare Closures: For days that we are closed for daycare, all daycare reservations will be automatically canceled at impacted locations.
  • Holiday Boarding: Hours will be open 9 am to 7 pm at our Shirlington location only for boarding drop-off/pick-up all days we are closed for daycare per the calendar. Transportation from Old Town will not be available as that location will be closed.
  • Training & Workshop: Please view The Board Hound Calendar to review current schedules for classes, workshops, puppy party, and other events possibly impacted by a holiday.

Holiday Deposits & Holiday Boarding Cancellation Policy: If a boarding reservation falls on any date listed on our holiday schedule as closed, it will require a non-refundable holiday deposit. Deposits are applied to the boarding stay invoice at checkout. All holiday deposits are non-refundable. Holiday reservations canceled within seven (7) days of the reservation start date will forfeit any paid deposit. If the boarding reservation is canceled at least seven (7) days prior to the reservation start date, the amount for the deposit will be applied to future services. Applicable holidays are posted to The Board Hound Calendar.

Holiday Surcharges: All days that we are listed as closed for daycare, boarding reservations will incur a Holiday Surcharge per night. The current holiday surcharge pricing can be viewed here: https://theboardhound.com/pricing/.

Shirlington & Old Town Location Policies/Procedures

Hours of Operation & Contact Information: Please visit https://theboardhound.com/locations/ to review hours, location, and contact information for each location.

Early Drop-Off: Early Drop-Off is offered at our Shirlington and Old Town locations. Early drop off is accommodated Monday through Friday only from 6:30-6:59 am and will incur a fee for each occurrence. Early Drop-off is complementary for boarding dogs and Unlimited Monthly Daycare Package holders.

Late Pick-Up: Late Pick-Up is offered at our Shirlington and Old Town locations. Late Pick-Up is accommodated Monday through Friday only from 7:30-7:59 pm. If a dog is not picked up by 8pm, The Board Hound will take the necessary means for further care of the dog at the owner’s expense. This includes transportation from Old Town to Shirlington for boarding. Late pick up is complementary for boarding dogs.

Transportation to Shirlington: The Board Hound will provide transportation from our Old Town location to our Shirlington location for boarding as requested, or if late pick up does not occur by 8pm. Transportation to Shirlington is complementary for scheduled boarding dogs dropped off before 12pm at the Old Town Location. If drop off occurs after 12pm, or if a daycare dog has not been picked up by 8pm, transportation services will incur a fee. We do not offer Transportation from Shirlington to Old Town.

Inclement Weather Policy – Shirlington Location: In the event of inclement weather, our hours of operation at our Shirlington location will be from 9 am to 7 pm. For delayed opening, notification will be provided at https://theboardhound.com/ by 5:30 am EST. If inclement weather develops, or is predicted to occur, notification of early closure will be provided at https://theboardhound.com/ by 12 pm EST. In extreme circumstances, daycare operations may be limited. In all cases, there will be manager on site from 6:30 am to 8 pm, and an overnight attendant on site from 8 pm to 6:30 am, at minimum. If you need to pick-up/drop-off your dog before 9 am or after 7 pm on these days, early drop-off and late pick-up fees may apply for daycare and boarding. Scheduled Play School and Board & Train sessions may be rescheduled. The Board Hound follows local and federal government for inclement weather decisions.

Inclement Weather Policy – Old Town Location: In the event of inclement weather, the Old Town location may implement delayed opening at 9am, early closure at 5pm, or remain closed. For late opening or closure, notification will be provided at https://theboardhound.com/ by 5:30 am EST. If inclement weather develops, or is predicted to occur, notification of early closure will be provided at https://theboardhound.com/ by 12 pm EST. In extreme circumstances, and we have delayed opening for daycare, early drop off (before 9am) will not be available, daycare operations may be limited. In the event of early closure, pick up after 5pm may incur the late pick up fee. If pick up after 5pm is needed, those fees will be applied. Transportation to the Shirlington location during inclement weather may be available and offered on a case-by-case basis and will incur a $20 fee. Scheduled Play School and Private Training sessions will be rescheduled. Make-up dates will be announced for all scheduled group classes, workshops, or community events. The Board Hound follows local and federal government for inclement weather decisions.

Payment, Permissions & Understanding of Risk

Payment: Full payment for service is expected on the day services are rendered. Visa, Master Card, American Express, Discover, and check are all accepted. In addition, we require each account with us to have a valid credit card on file to schedule services for the convenience of all our boarding, daycare, and training clients. If another payment method is not provided at check out, your credit card on file will be charged automatically. For security reasons, we do not accept cash payments. All daycare packages are non-refundable, non-transferrable, and will not be applied to boarding stays. Play School and Board & Train services will be charged the day before the first scheduled session. Group Classes, Workshops, and Community Events will be charged at the time of registration, if applicable. Your preferred credit card can be updated in-person, or over the phone, at any time.

Photography: It is understood that by participating in services offered by The Board Hound it is hereby agreed to allow The Board Hound to use photographs or images taken of any dog in print form, social media, or otherwise for publication and/or promotion. All images are property of The Board Hound and will be used as needed only by The Board Hound.

Medical Release: It is mutually understood that in the event of a medical emergency, that The Board Hound, possibly at its sole discretion, is authorized to seek immediate attention of a licensed veterinarian. The Board Hound is authorized to seek medical attention for any dog at Shirlington Animal Hospital, VCA Alexandria Animal Hospital, Columbia Pike Animal Hospital, or any other local vet as needed.

Financial Responsibility for Medical Treatment: It is understood that financial responsibility for any medical treatment any dog(s) receive(s) as a result of a medical emergency while attending any services provided by The Board Hound, is the responsibility of the dog’s owner. Furthermore, The Board Hound is authorized to seek medical treatment and authorize veterinary services within the Emergency Hospitalization Maximum amount indicated by the owner.

Risk: It is understood that there are risks and benefits associated with group socialization of dogs. It is agreed that the benefits outweigh the risks in most cases and that risk is accepted. Play and all other aspects of The Board Hound are closely monitored. However, that does not always guarantee the prevention of injury or illness. By participating in daycare, boarding, and training services at The Board Hound, the owner is acknowledging and accepting that a risk of injury or illness resulting in minor or serious outcomes, including death, is possible.

Client’s Duty to Assist in and Continue Training: The client understands that the dog will not make progress in his or her training without regular & consistent work on the part of the client and household. Additionally, the client agrees that they and the members of their household will follow the trainer’s instructions without modification, work with the dog during the time between classes or lessons, and consistently reinforce the training being given to the dog. The client further understands that deviation from the recommended training methods, equipment, and protocols may create unintended and/or undesirable results and understands that the trainer cannot be held responsible for such results.

Non-Guarantee of Training Results: It is understood by the client that every dog responds to training differently and will learn at differing speeds. It is understood that all training takes commitment and work from the trainer, the owner, and the dog to achieve any goals set. It is important to have realistic expectations for the training results, and the trainer(s) will always give honest feedback and direction to best suit the training needs/desires.

Non-Guarantee of Daycare Results: It is understood by the client that every dog responds to group socialization differently. It is important to have realistic expectations for the socialization results, and the managers will always give honest feedback and direction to best suit the dog’s socialization needs. The Board Hound is also not responsible for the possible development, learning, or exhibition of unintended or undesirable behavior shown in a group play setting.

Damages: It is understood that any harm or injury resulting in veterinary care or damage caused to property while participating in services provided by The Board Hound is the sole responsibility, financially or otherwise, of the offending dog’s owner. The Board Hound is authorized to seek reimbursement for property damages and veterinary expenses as a result of participation in services provided by The Board Hound.

Release of Liability: By participating in services provided, it is understood that The Board Hound, their owners, staff, partners, and volunteers, will not be liable, financially or otherwise, for injuries to any dog, injuries to persons on the premises, or damages to any property or belongings while participating in any services provided by The Board Hound. The Board Hound is released of any liability arising from a dog’s participation in any and all services provided by The Board Hound.

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