Frequently Asked Questions

Where is Fuzzy Buddy’s located?
We are at 10907 Aurora Avenue North, Seattle 98133.  We are just south of Evergreen-Washelli Cemetery on the west side of the street. Coming from the south, you will be able to see our big yellow sign on the left side of the road.  Coming from the north, our sign is obscured by the cemetery’s trees.  We are directly next to the cemetery property and the Rose Corner is our neighbor to the south.

Where should I park?
We have a small parking lot in front of our building. If the lot is full, you can park on the street between 9am and 3pm when the transit lane is not reserved for buses. Please do not park by the Rose Corner. Please keep your dog on leash in the parking lot and lobby.

Please keep the handicapped parking spot open for the clients rely on it in order to safely move their dogs in and out of the building. We allow people with temporary disabilities (leg, arm or back injuries) to use that space when necessary. We encourage anyone with a mobility issue to ask for help getting your dog in or out of the building. You can even call ahead to alert us to your arrival so we can get your dog from your car or bring your dog out to you at pick up time.

Because our parking lot is small, it is totally the wrong place to camp out looking at your phone before or after you have dropped off your dog. People who do that tend to get the stink eye from arriving clients who’ve spent time in the turn lane waiting for a parking spot. Harmony reigns if phone browsing happens in a different parking lot.

What are your hours?
We are open from 6:30 am to 7 pm Monday through Friday for dog daycare.  We are open on the weekends for dog training classes and individual playgroups only.

Is Fuzzy Buddy’s open on holidays?
We are closed for Memorial Day and Labor Day. This gives us a chance to do maintenance on the playroom. We sometimes close on Independence Day, Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day depending on demand for our service.

Do you provide overnight boarding?
We do not offer overnight care.

I need to call Fuzzy Buddy’s.  What is the phone number?
You can reach us at (206) 782-4321.  If you have a question specifically about training, you can call Dana Mongillo directly at (206) 234-PETS.

How do I enroll my dog at Fuzzy Buddy’s Dog Daycare?

To enroll in daycare, you first need to submit your application and then call or email us to schedule your dog’s trial day.  The trial day gives us a chance to meet and see if your dog enjoys the daycare environment.

My dog has very little or no experience playing with other dogs. Will daycare help my dog become better socialized to dog play?
Daycare can be an overwhelming way to introduce an under-socialized dog to a play environment. We require that every dog coming in for a trial day has a known play history. This means that if you have never had your dog off-leash around other dogs of all sizes, you will need to provide this opportunity to your dog before your trial day.

All daycare dogs must be able to tolerate socially inept puppies, clumsy adolescents, and boisterous older dogs without getting snappy or aggressive. Dogs must also roll with situations like being bumped, being sniffed, and even being mounted. (Though we do redirect mounting, some dogs are so intolerant of mounting that they react with aggression even to to the posturing preludes to that behavior.)

If, during your experiments with off-leash play, your dog is nervous or uninterested in playing, we can still try him out in daycare as long as he didn’t bite another dog or make you really nervous about his ability to play with others without slipping into aggression.

We do ease new dogs in slowly, keeping them in a starter pen with a small number of dogs until they are ready for the main action. Often, a dog will start out nervous in the playroom, but as he gets more experience and develops relationships with specific dogs, we will see him blossom into a more confident dog!

Are there any types or breeds of dogs who do not do well at daycare?
Dogs of any breed, age, or gender can be a fun member of the daycare pack, as long as they enjoy being around dogs, are good communicators, and have a tolerance for the antics of other dogs.

Daycare might not be a healthy or safe exercise resource for the following types of dogs:
* Dogs who won’t start a fight but are more than happy to get into it if another dog does start something. Often, these dogs are poor communicators, or are signaling confrontational body language that the other dog is responding to when that dog “starts something.” If your dog is frequently aggressed toward, delve into some resources on dog body language and observe your dog’s signaling to try to discern what the trigger is.

Dogs who can diffuse confrontational signaling with “calming signals” do better in daycare than dogs who do not have those peacemaking skills.

* Dogs who frequently yelp or scream when startled or hurt may create a dangerous environment in the playroom if the sounds they make trigger a predatory response in the dogs around them.

* Dogs who guard space, toys, water, bones, or people might have a hard time refraining from guarding in the playroom. We want all the dogs to have a good time. If there are dogs guarding objects or spaces in the playroom, this can create stress for everyone around them.

* Dogs who eat paper, towels, rocks, poop, or other non-food items may be hard to keep safe in the playroom. Please let us know if your dog often ingests non-food items, and especially if your dog has ever had surgery to remove something from their stomach.

* Dogs who don’t recognize calming signals from other dogs and therefore don’t recognize when another dog is uncomfortable, stressed, or done playing with them. These dogs are the bold, over-the-top players that are convinced that every dog should want to play with them. Although these dogs may be friendly, their inability to tailor their play style to the needs of their playmates may create situations where they are being bullies. Luckily, we can often help these dogs learn better play skills.

What is your policy on spaying and neutering?
Vets are recommending that dogs get spayed or neutered later. We support the recommendations of your vet or breeder, but sometimes those sexual hormones cause chaos in the daycare playroom!

We accept unneutered male dogs up to 12 months of age, but if inappropriate hormone-induced behaviors like obsessive mounting are getting in the way of healthy play, we may recommend your dog stay home from daycare until neutered. Often an unneutered dog behaves perfectly in the playroom, but is the recipient of inappropriate mounting from his neutered cohorts. In that case, we will also recommend your dog stay home from daycare until neutered as we do not want him to be overwhelmed with unwelcome attention.

Please do not bring unspayed females during their heat cycle or near the time their heat cycle begins. Also, please wait four weeks after the last symptoms of the heat cycle to be sure that her elevated hormone levels don’t attract extra attention to her. (This WILL happen so please do err on the side of too much time after cycle rather than too little.)

If at any time we suspect that your dog’s hormones are causing issues for them in the playroom, we will talk to you about it and may recommend you find a different exercise solution. Often, the issue is not with the unspayed or unneutered dog’s behavior, but with the reaction of the other dogs to him or her.

Can I stop by to check Fuzzy Buddy’s out?
Sure! You can stop by anytime. We have a window in the lobby that allows you to see the whole main playroom. If you come during the busy drop off and pick up times (7-10:30 am and 4-6:30 pm) we may not be able to answer your questions very efficiently as we tend to the clients who are coming and going. The lobby is more leisurely outside of those hours and there will be someone available to answer your questions. You do not need to call first before you stop by.

What do I need to bring with me for my dog’s first day?
Please bring your dog’s vaccination records or have your vet fax them to (206) 782-4770.  Dogs wear harnesses in the playroom, so please bring your dog in a harness if you have one. If your dog needs a meal while at daycare, bring it in a baggie labeled with your dog’s name.

Where do I get the application form?
Right here!
APPLICATION FORM PDF VERSION to print out and mail or fax.
You can also call us at (206)782-4321 to request to have one mailed to you.

How long does my dog stay on his trial day?
We require that all new dogs arrive between 7:10 am and 10 am on their first day. Most dogs do well with a trial day that is at least five hours long. Some dogs stay all day. Young puppies, older dogs and shy dogs do best if their first day is kept short. If you have concerns about your dog enjoying the activity of daycare, we can talk about the appropriate length for the trial day. Ideally, we will have the dog long enough to see him relax and start to interact with the other dogs.

Please call us to check in and see how your dog is doing. If your dog is stressed it might be best to cut the trial day short. If your schedule necessitates a long day for your dog, we can always give him some rest time in the office or the lounge.

What happens during my dog’s trial day?
When you come in, we will look over your application and ask you any questions we have about your dog.  Then we will get to know your dog and see how comfortable he or she is being greeted and handled by us. If your dog is not wearing a harness, we will put one on him or her. Then we will take your dog in the starter pen in the playroom and introduce your dog to just a few low-key dogs.  As your dog gets more comfortable in the playroom, we will introduce him to more and more dogs, and integrate him into the main action.  You are welcome to watch through the window in our lobby for as long as you would like.

Can I call during the day to check on my dog?

What if my dog doesn’t do well at the trial day?
If there are issues that arise during the trial day, we will discuss them with you when you return to pick up your dog.  Not all dogs enjoy the daycare environment, and if that is the case with your dog, we will let you know about other exercise options for your dog.

What do dogs do at dog daycare?
Your dog will enjoy an array of toys and balls to be silly with, including wading pools in the warm weather. Puppies and small dogs have their own play space if they aren’t into the big dog action.  If someone is having a bad day, they can relax in an individual time-out area and regroup before joining the pack for more play.

Should I bring a lunch for my dog?
If your dog usually gets a meal during the time they are at dog daycare, you should definitely bring some food for them.  Put the serving size in a bag with your dog’s name on it. We feed lunches between 12 and 1:30 but if your dog needs to be fed earlier or later than that, just write the mealtime on their bag.

How big is your facility?
Our upstairs indoor playroom is about 2400 sq ft and our outdoor area is 900 square feet.  Our downstairs playroom is 2200 square feet and has an outdoor area that is 1500 square feet. We also have a “lounge” area that dogs can relax in, and sometimes dogs join us in the office for quiet time.

What is your facility like inside?
The floor in both our indoor playrooms is thick rubber matting, a safe and soft surface for dogs to play on.  We provide an array of durable toys for the dogs to play with and chew on.  The outdoor areas have 7′ tall wooden fencing, a potty area, and room to run with friends.  In warm weather, we provide wading pools to splash in.

Do I need reservations for my dog to attend daycare?

Please let us know in advance the date(s) you would like your dog to come.  You can reserve specific dates or maintain a consistent weekly schedule. We often fill up well in advance for Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays so reserve early in order to get a spot. You are always welcome to call us last minute to see if there is space available. We do maintain a wait list for the days we are full.

Here is how to reserve or cancel a day:

  • Use the convenient form here (preferred*)
  • Email
  • Write your reservations on the clipboard outside our front door
  • Call us at 782-4321 if it is less than 2 days before the day you need care.

Cancellation Policy:
Let us know asap if you need to cancel a reserved day. Ideally, cancellations should be received by the night before but we accept cancellations up to 9 am the day of. That enables us to call any dogs who are wait-listed for that day or say “yes” to last minute desperate requests for daycare.  If you do not contact us to cancel, your dog will be considered a “no show” for the day.

No Show Policy:
Dogs who are “no shows” for three consecutive reserved days without calling to cancel will lose their standing reservation for that day of the week.

Is there a discount if I have more than one dog?
There is a discount of around 14% for multiple dog households.

What if my dog gets injured while at daycare?
If a dog is injured, we will tend to the injury as quickly as possible.  All of our playroom staff have pet first aid training.  If it is an injury that requires vet attention, we will contact the owners and make a vet appointment.  If the dog needs to be seen right away, and the dog’s regular vet is not available, we will make an appointment with one of the excellent vets in our neighborhood.

What if my dog is coughing, sneezing, has worms or is lethargic?
If your dog should contract a contagious illness or have internal parasites, please keep them home from daycare and dog parks! Illnesses and parasites (like fleas) can spread amongst dogs in daycare just as colds, viruses, and lice spread like wildfire at child daycares. We rely on you, the owner, to keep a close eye out for contagious illnesses and keep your dog home for the health and safety of all.

Examples of such illnesses include giardia, kennel cough, conjunctivitis, and worms. Evidence of illness includes coughing, unexplained diarrhea or vomiting, runny eyes, and extreme lethargy. Please call Fuzzy Buddy’s so we know your dog is ill. Consult your veterinarian regarding when your dog is safe to return to daycare. If we notice symptoms of a contagious illness in your dog while at daycare, your dog will be immediately quarantined and you will be notified.

If your dog has been coughing at home, please keep him away from daycare until there has been at least five days without coughing. If your dog coughs upon entry to the lobby, we will ask that he return home for the day until it can be determined whether or not he has a respiratory infection. If we hear your dog cough at daycare, he will be quarantined and you will contacted to pick him up as early as possible. Coughing is a non-specific sign and many dogs cough regularly due to tracheal damage or allergies. If you know that your dog coughs when excited or for reasons other than illness, please let us know. This may prevent us from needlessly isolating him from other dogs. If other dogs have kennel cough, however, we need to treat all coughing dogs as if they are ill.

Contracting minor illnesses can happen in any social situation—dog daycare and dog parks for dogs, schools and workplaces for humans. Luckily, our ongoing sanitation efforts at Fuzzy Buddy’s and diligence about noticing symptoms and isolating potentially sick dogs, keeps outbreaks to a minimum. Many parents have commented that they wish their child’s daycare or preschool was as illness-free!

How many dogs do you have per day?
Between 60 and 85 dogs come to Fuzzy Buddy’s any given day.  Some dogs come for just a few hours, some for half days, and others stay all day. We split the dogs between the upper and lower playrooms. Our upper playroom is where most of the larger, active dogs stay and play. Smaller dogs, puppies, older dogs, and their friends hang out in the lower playroom.

Do the dogs ever fight?
Many dogs play hard with each other.  They may wrestle or mouth each other, and even though it may look fierce, this type of activity is normal.  We intervene if a dog is excessively worried about another dog, or if a dog is being a bully and not respecting the cut-off signals (“calming signals”) from his playmates.  Fights occasionally occur when the excitement level gets too high.  We work to prevent this by redirecting play before it escalates in intensity.  This helps to keep everyone’s arousal level down.  Fights that occur are usually verbal arguments that last less than 10 seconds and end on their own.  A dog who repeatedly fights is not a good candidate for daycare, not only because he may cause an injury but also because fighting is not a healthy behavior for him to be practicing.  Our goal is to screen out dogs who do not have good control over their bite and can cause injuries.  We want everyone to be safe and have fun.

Can I drop off my dog anytime?
On your trial day, please arrange to bring your dog between 7:10 am and 10 am. We have found that new dogs arriving later than 10 am experience more stress integrating into the playroom because there are more dogs to meet and those dogs might be too tired to engage with them.

After your trial day, you can drop off your dog at any time before 2:45pm.

My dog is obese. Can he still come to daycare?
Many of our clients start daycare in order to help their dog lose weight. If your dog scores an 8 or 9 on the Purina Body Condition System chart, we ask that you get veterinarian approval for your dog to start or continue daycare. This will allow you to get professional guidance as you work to get your dog back to a healthy weight. Also, some weight gains are due to medical issues like diabetes and thyroid disease and only a vet can identify that.

Who can pick up my dog from daycare??
When you arrive to pick up your dog, just tell us your dog’s full name, your name, and a brief description of your dog. Once we get to recognize your face or your car, you may find that we are pulling your dog from the playroom as soon as we see you in the parking lot.

Many dogs have an extended network of family members, grandparents, dog walkers, and neighbors picking them up after daycare. If someone other than you will be picking up your dog, we will ask that person to tell us your dog’s full name, the full name of one of the owners, and a description of your dog. We will assume that anyone being able to provide that information is authorized to pick up your dog.

If there are people in your life absolutely unauthorized to pick up your dog, please give us their names and descriptions or photographs so we can alert you to any attempts to gain possession of your dog. In addition, if you want to block everyone but legal owners from picking up your dog, we will photograph all the authorized caretakers and be alert to the restrictions.

What if my dog has fleas?
If fleas are present on your dog, your dog needs to stay home from daycare. If we find fleas on your dog during daycare, we will give your dog a flea bath. If we find fleas on your dog more than twice in a three month period, we will charge you $10 for any necessary flea baths and your dog will not be able to return to daycare until you bring in proof that you have started your dog on a veterinarian-prescribed flea product, preferably an oral medication like Trifexis.  Regularly flea combing your dog will alert you to any issues before they become infestations.

Do you have a public restroom?
Our restroom is for employee use only except for in cases of extreme emergency because we need to clear the playroom of most of the dogs to let a non-staff person reach the bathroom door. That process takes time and can create over-arousal and stress for the dogs.