Policies & Requirements

In this section you will notice that we have grouped our policies, requirements and general information into individual sections to make it easier to find what you are looking for. If you have questions relating to your dog(s) that you do not see here, please feel free to email us any time at hello@dogwoodretreat.ca.

At no time is it permitted for anyone to enter the dog play pens, walk around the property without a member of staff or put your hands through any of the open fenced areas where the dogs are. This is for both the safety of you and the dogs.

We accept dogs from 10 weeks old as long as they have their first set of puppy shots. They will be well cared for and loved at this special age.

1. Hours of Operation

Monday to Friday: 6:30am to 6pm
Saturday: 8:30am to 5:30pm
Sunday: 8:30am – 12:30pm & 4:30pm to 5:30pm
Holidays (excl Christmas): Please ask
Christmas: To Be Confirmed

1.1  Boarding check out time is 2pm the day of pick up. Your dog is more than welcome to stay however an additional half night rate will be charged after 2pm.

1.2  We do not accept early drop off’s or late pick-up’s.

1.3  Any dog(s) not picked up by our closing time will be brought inside, fed and bedded down and pick-up will not be available until the next morning. This will be charged at the overnight rate (see Rates and Memberships) and charged to you (the client).

2. Initial Daycare and Dropping off

It is mandatory for all dogs to attend at least 1 Daycare* (Initial Daycare) so that we can assess them before they board at Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat and before they start attending regular daycare. During this period, we will first make sure that they are good with us, good with the other dogs and do not stress to the point that we would be concerned about their health and safety. If we find that they stress excessively or are overly nervous, we may ask that they come for a second daycare. If we find that they stress to the point that they are not happy and could pose a risk to their own health or safety, we will contact you and ask you to come pick them up.

If your dog(s) is in any way nervous and not well socialized on coming for it’s first day, we will start your dog(s) off slowly. We will introduce your dog(s) to one of our own first who is very well socialized and gets along with all dogs. If your dog(s) shows signs of being very nervous, we will keep him/her with a smaller group until we feel they are ready to be integrated into a larger group of dogs. We will never just take your dog(s) and just let them in with 15 or 20 dogs and hope they do well.

If you’re dog(s) is not well socialized and you are unsure about them, please note that Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat is NOT somewhere totestyour dogs(s) as we would never put your dog or anyone else’s at harm.

*If your dog(s) are 6 months or under, they are not required to have an Initial Daycare before they board overnight (although we do recommend it).

2.1  Initial Daycare is charged at the normal daycare rate (see Rates and Memberships).

2.2  All dog(s) must stay for a minimum of 3 hours on their first day, however they may stay the full day.

2.3  For their first day you can drop off any time after we open UP TO 12 PM ONLY (see Hours of Operation).

2.4  All dogs must come with a collar tight enough so they cannot slip out of it and must be on leash. You are welcome to have them on a harness but they must also have a collar.

2.5  If your dog(s) show any signs of aggression towards us or any member of staff of Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat or any other dog, we will ask you to come and pick your dog up and they will be dismissed until proper training has been given and proof that the issue has been resolved. This will be in the form of a certificate or letter from a professional trainer.

2.6   It will be at the discretion of Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat and it’s employees whether any dog that has been previously dismissed will be allowed back.

2.7  All dog(s) coming for their Initial Daycare (unless previously sent) must be fully vaccinated before they arrive and vaccination records sent to us (see Vaccinations for a list of what is required).

2.8  If your dog(s) eats lunch, please feel free to bring it along and we will be happy to feed them.

3. Daycare

We offer Full Daycare 7 days a week. Daycare is a great way for you to socialize your dog(s) and burn off that energy. During Daycare, dogs learn social skills and dog language. At Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat we have different size pens where we separate dogs of different sizes.

3.1  All dogs must come with a collar tight enough that it will not slip it and be leashed.

3.2  At no time are Prong or Shock collars allowed on the premises.

3.3 Daycare is charged at a flat daily rate (see Rates and Memberships) and you can drop your dog(s) off anytime after we open (up to 12pm ONLY) and pick-up must be any time before we close.

3.4 Any dog(s) not picked up by our closing time will be brought inside, fed and bedded down and pick-up will not be available until the next morning. This will be charged at the overnight rate (see Rates and Memberships) and charged to you (the client).

3.5 During days of regular weather and temperatures, most dogs will stay outside for a period of 2-3hrs (sometimes longer if the temperatures are good and they are happy). After this we will bring them in for a rest and feed them lunch (if needed). If it is very hot or very cold outside, the length of time that they spend outside is greatly reduced and they will  come inside to the Doggy Lodge on a regular basis which is fully heated and air-conditioned and have lots of room to play.

3.6 Dogs have access to water 24hrs a day both outside in the pens and inside in the Doggy Lodge. While we do our best to make sure they drink during their days here, some dogs will not drink and unfortunately we cannot force them to.

3.7  During days that are really cold you may wish to bring a jacket for your dog(s). Dogs can play very hard and like to roll and tumble. Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat and it’s employees accepts no responsibility for any damage that may arise to any dogs clothing due to play while on your dog. If you bring a coat/jacket please note that knitted coats will tear easily in play and we recommend a coat with high durability.

3.8  We are strongly against over booking and have a set limit that we will accept. Reservations are on a first come first serve basis.

3.9  We DO NOT supply food. If you bring your dog(s) for the day but think you may have to leave them overnight, please bring food (see Food) even if you do end up picking them up the same day.

4. Boarding

CHECK OUT TIME IS 2PM. After 2pm an additional half night will be charged.

All dogs at Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat are boarded in our Doggy Lodge. Our Doggy Lodge is fully heated and air-conditioned.

Our Doggy Lodge has a mix of purpose built rooms and crates. We decide when we meet your dog(s) which we feel they will do better in.

Our doggy Lodge is securely locked at all times during the night. We have smart security cameras that notify us of any dog barking or movement. We have centrally monitored smoke and carbon monoxide alarms which are automatically tested every 2 days. Multiple fire extinguishers are securely placed throughout the Doggy Lodge.

4.1  It is mandatory that all dogs over the age of 6 months must complete one daycare, also known as the Initial Daycare before we will board them overnight. This is for the assessment of your dog to be sure that they will be good with us, the other dogs and so we can see that they will not stress while they are here.

4.2  When dropping your dog off to board, please make sure your dog(s) are here AT LEAST 1 HOUR prior to closing. This way we can make sure they get enough time to exercise and eat before their quiet time.

4.3  Our approximate feeding times are as follows:

Breakfast: 6:30am – 7:30am
Lunch: 12:00pm – 1:00pm
Supper: 4:45pm – 5:30pm

4.4  We do not feed any time after 6:00pm as tummies are full and the dogs are settled and relaxed after a good play day.

4.5  All food must be supplied by you (the client) (see Food). Please always bring extra food as if your dog(s) are staying for any period of time we generally feed them a little more as they burn more calories during their days of play. Also there may be times that you get delayed for whatever reason and switching your dog(s) to a food that they are not used to may upset their tummies.

4.6  Please do not bring bowls (unless they eat from a slow feeder) as we have lots of bowls and they may get mixed up with ours.

4.7  We do supply blankets and bedding to keep your dog(s) warm and cozy at night. If you have a bed or blanket that you want to bring, you are more than welcome to.

4.8  You are welcome to bring a favourite toy for your dog when they stay with us. They are the only ones that will have access to it.

4.9  While in the Doggy Lodge during the day and night, all dogs have access to water in their rooms or crates.

4.10  We have music playing for the dogs 24/7. They generally tend to like country music although sometimes they do ask us to change the station to something a little more modern.

4.11  During days of thunder, we increase the volume of the music slightly. With the barn being so well insulated and the music playing, the dogs have never shown any signs of stress from thunder.

4.12 We are strongly against over booking and have a set limit that we will accept. Reservations are on a first come first serve basis.

5. Food

All dogs must come with their own food in either it’s original bags or a sealed plastic container. We do not supply food at Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat although we do sell very high quality food that can be purchased at any time. Dogs switching to a food that they may not be used to may give them an upset stomach.

5.1  Please do not bring food in plastic grocery bags. Sealed Ziplok bags, plastic containers or anything that is sealed is fine.

5.2  All food must come with feeding instructions either in or on the bag.

5.3  It is easy to think that because your dog(s) is away from you for a period of time that you should buy lots of different treats. This is fine, however if your dog(s) is not used to regularly eating this type of treat, it may cause an upset stomach.

5.4  We DO NOT supply food. If you bring your dog(s) for the day but think you may have to leave them overnight, please bring food even if you do end up picking them up the same day.

6. Medications

If your dog(s) are coming into board, whether it is for Daycare or Night Boarding and they have any medical issues that must be discussed or shown, please give us adequate notice so that we can dedicate our time to you. If your dog has an issue that you must show us how to treat it, please make sure that you drop off between the hours of 12pm and 3pm or drop in to us in advance of dropping your dog(s) off as our mornings and evenings are purely dedicated on our dogs and clients.

At Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat we are used to giving all types of medications to dogs. We have a fridge for medications and syringes that may need to be refrigerated.

6.1  All medication needs to be in the original container, clearly marked, and accompanied by the following information:

  • Dog’s first and last name
  • Name of medication and strength
  • Dosage per day and whether it has been administered the morning or afternoon of drop off.

7. Vaccinations

All dogs must have current vaccination records on file with us and must show proof of vaccinations before coming to Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat for the first time.

7.1  The following vaccinations are required to be kept up to date at all times:

  • Rabies within 3 years
  • DA2PP/DHPP annually or every 3 years (depending on your vet and what vaccine they give). DA2PP, is a multivalent vaccine for dogs that protects against the viruses indicated by the alphanumeric characters forming the acronym: D for canine distemper, A2 for canine adenovirus type 2, which offers cross-protection to canine adenovirus type 1 (the more pathogenic of the two strains) (see Canine adenovirus), the first P for canine parvovirus, and the second P for parainfluenza. Because infectious canine hepatitis is another name for canine adenovirus type 1, an H is sometimes used instead of A. In DA2PPC, the C indicates canine coronavirus. This vaccine is usually given to puppies at 8 weeks of age, followed by 12 weeks of age, and then 16 weeks of age. This vaccine is given again at 1 year of age and then annually, or every 3 years. Some veterinarians’ recommended vaccine schedules may differ from this. DA2PPC does not include Bordetellabut the combination of Bordetella with DA2PPC prevents kennel cough, by preventing adenovirus, distemper, parainfluenza, and Bordetella.
  • Bordatella (Kennel Cough) annually although we recommend every 9 months for best protection.

7.2  It it your responsibility to be sure that all vaccinations are up to date and we have a copy on file at all times.

7.3  We do not ask for the Lyme disease vaccination as your dog(s) will not be in an area where they can come into contact with ticks. This is up to your own discretion.

7.4  We do not accept the Titer Test in replacement of vaccinations. This is for the safety of yours and everybody else’s dogs.

8. Spay and Neuter

At Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat, all dogs over the age of 10 months (ten months) will be required to be spayed or neutered.

8.1  If you have a female dog and she is under the age of 10 months but has had a heat cycle, we will temporally dismiss her until she has been spayed. This is for the safety and comfort of yours and other dogs.

8.2  If your male dog is under the age of 10 months but shows signs of humping and or aggression, we may move him to a smaller pen until he has been neutered or if the humping is excessive in the case that he may be at risk of getting hurt or hurting other dogs, we may dismiss him until he is neutered.

9. Rates and Memberships

Please see below the current rates for Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat. rates are subject to change at any time without prior notification.

9.1 Our rates are as follows: 
Daycare (First Dog): $27.50 + 15% HST
Daycare (Additional dogs): $24.70 + 15% HST  per dog from the same household

Overnights (First Dog): $37.50 + 15% HST 
Overnights (Additional dogs): $33.70 + 15% HST per dog from the same household

9.2  Boarding check out time is 2pm . Your dog is more than welcome to stay after 2pm however an additional half night rate will apply.

9.3  Prepaid bundles/packages (when available) are valid for a period of 8 months from the time purchase and cannot be used in conjunction with any other packages or offers unless otherwise stated.  Any days/nights not used will be forfeited.

9.4  No package refunds after 15 days from the date of purchase.

9.5  For package refunds within 15 days, nights used will be charged at single night rate and day care packages will be charged at a full rate (depending on the package purchased).

9.6  All pricing and policies are subject to change without notice.

9.7  All Boarding and Daycare is by reservation only. Please make reservations as far in advance as possible. Holidays book up months in advance and weekends book up weeks in advance. Please call the office early for available dates.

9.8  We require 48 hour notice for holiday cancellations. Christmas and Thanksgiving and New Years require 7 days notice for cancellation.

10. Payment

All payments are due on the day you pick your dog up unless it falls under these special circumstances:

  • Your Dog(s) is here for daycare for more than one day in the week in which case you can pay at the end of the week.
  • Your dog(s) is boarding for a few days/weeks/months in which case you can pay when you pick your dog(s) up*
  • You have bought a special offer in advance.

10.1  We accept all major forms of Credit Cards – Visa, Mastercard, American Express.

10.2  We accept Debit

10.3  We do accept cash.

10.4  We accept Interac eTransfers (email transfer) to pay@dogwoodretreat.ca**

10.5  We accept cheques made payable to “Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat Inc.”.

10.6 We accept Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay.

*If your dog(s) are boarding for a few months, we will arrange payment schedules (eg. monthly) so you are not left with a huge bill when you return.
**All Interac eTransfer payments must be paid within 24hours of picking up your dog(s).

All Interac payment must be made to pay@dogwoodretreat.ca.

Any invoices/payment not paid within that time will be subject to a $2/per day surcharge.

11. Viewings

(When Available) Our viewing times are strictly BY APPOINTMENT ONLY People coming and going causes disruption, and disruption causes stress. Imagine how excited your dog is when you come home from work. Now imagine you have 20 dogs at home, and you come home every hour all day. That’s a lot of excited dogs. We want dogs to relax while staying with us and not be distracted by people coming and going when not expected. Please call and arrange an appointment with us before hand so we can dedicate the time to show you what we are proud of!

11.1  We recommend that you bring your dog(s) with you when you come for a viewing. This way they get a little familiar when they come back for their Initial Daycare.

11.2  While on your viewing we ask that your dog(s) are securely leashed. At the back of our big pen is open chain link fencing. We ask that you do not put your hands through the fence and to keep your dog(s) back from the fence.

11.3  Dogs are not allowed to go in with other dogs while they come for a viewing.

12. Play Pens and Security

At Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat we have separate play pens. Our large pen is for medium to large dogs. Our medium pen for small to medium and nervous dogs and our small pen is for small dogs and for older dogs that just want to stretch their legs.

12.1  All pens have safety gates installed which is a second set of gates inside the main gate.

12.2  All pens have security fencing.

12.3  All pens have shade while the large pen has a mix of natural shade and purpose built shelters.

12.4  We have toys and balls inside each pen suitable for the dogs of their size.

12.5  All pens are monitored during the day by Dogwood Lodge Pet Retreat  Staff and also have security cameras installed for extra security.

13. Contacting Us

We answer many ways of contact.

13.1  You can contact us by email: hello@dogwoodretreat.ca.

13.2  Existing customers (only) can text us on (424) 543-6110

13.3  You can call us TOLL FREE on (888) 844-5408 or direct on (902) 742-1011.

13.4  You can contact us by using Facebook Messenger. Click here to send us a message.

13-5 Contact us by mail to: 1665 Hardscratch Road, South Ohio, NS, B5A 5J3