Q: Other facilities have “cage-free” boarding where the dogs all sleep in the same room together and where they are all outdoors all day long together. Why don’t you offer this service?
A: They do it because it is frightfully expensive to install individual enclosures and if they are in a leased warehouse they wouldn’t consider that investment in infrastructure. Consider how difficult it would be to obtain a building permit. The dogs are all out in the yard together all day because that is a great way to keep a large number of dogs without a high dollar investment. We do not believe that dogs sleeping out in a yard in the open, under bushes, is a safe or restful environment for them. They can play during our group periods and then go have a nap in the safety and security of their own private enclosure which is not a cage but rather a 100 square foot indoor outdoor space that they don’t have to share.
So, picture 30 toddlers sleeping in a room together. Yes, we could put about 50 dogs in each of our exercise yards and have one or two employees out there all day long to watch them and keep order but, frankly, it’s not what we’re about. We are here to provide quality, conscientious care. Individual enclosures with periodic playtimes is the gold standard of quality care.
Q: Are you able to accommodate special physical needs?
A: It is not our intent to provide veterinary boarding. Having said that, it is amazing how many clients arrive with dog’s leg in a cast, cone (e-collar) on their neck because of stitches, etc, or with bags of meds for cancer, insulin, etc. All medical conditions and medications need to be disclosed at the time of reservation so that we can determine if we can accommodate. Should you show up here to check-in with these conditions we may refuse to board your pet or we can accept your pet but subject to additional charges.
Q: Can I tour the Pet Ranch?
A: You are welcome to tour during our office hours. You don’t need a reservation and with proof of vaccines your pet is welcome to join you. We are not always fully staffed for tours but someone will always show you the kennel.
Q: My pet requires specific medications or attention. Can Waiterock still take care of my pet?
A: We have lots of experience in giving dogs and cats their medications. We will administer most medications free of charge and can generally address most special needs. There may be an additional charge for some medications or special needs, so please discuss with one of our front office personnel. If there is a circumstance for which Waiterock is not the best option for your pet we’ll let you know that as well.
Q: Are there separate areas for small and large dogs?
A: YES! Waiterock has around 20,000 square feet of outdoor play yards and we do designate different yards for different size dogs. For safety sake we do not have small dogs in with the large dogs. Even though all dogs are temperament tested and nice guys, a large dog can step on or roll a smaller dog and cause serious injury. As such, we have separate groups for seniors, smalls, gentle adults and large hooligans.
Q: My pet doesn’t get along with others. Can they still come to Waiterock?
A: We understand that not every dog likes to play with others for whatever reason.
As long as the dog likes people and is not dog aggressive we can provide them with Enhanced Care, separate areas where we can play with them one-on-one and then they can get some exercise and fresh air on their own. We cannot take dogs who pose a threat to other dogs should they get through a gate.
Q: How do I get started?
A: Please call the front office at 925-284-4729. We’ll ask you enough questions to start a file and then we like to have you bring your pet in for a visit so we can make sure we will all get along.
We do have a lot of play space to accommodate everyone but we want to make sure that we can handle your pet and need to figure out what playgroup to start them in.
Please fill out our new client application form and send that along with vaccine records to the front office. At that point we can schedule a pet visit.
Q: Does Waiterock supply food for my pet or do I bring it?
A: We have found that pets do best left on their own diet so we do encourage you to bring enough for the stay. Please bag it into individual servings in zip lock bags. Otherwise, we have small bags of Fromm available for purchase and we will bag that for you. If you bring your own food and we have to bag it into servings there will be a small additional charge. If your pet has food allergies then please bring their treats as we bed everyone down at night with a snack. We can accommodate refrigerated food but please remember that food goes bad after 2-3 days in the refrigerator. We have a freezer and microwave as well.
Q: What do you do if my pet gets sick?
A: While we certainly hope this never happens, we do have established protocol to ensure your pet gets the medical attention it needs and that the other pets in our care are protected from infectious disease. Our first course of action is to contact you and your veterinarian and take whatever steps you and your vet consider appropriate. If your vet is unavailable or doesn’t have an appointment we will take them to another local veterinarian if available. If none of that is an option and the matter is urgent we will transport your pet to the nearest emergency room which is Encina Veterinary Hospital in Walnut Creek or Sage in Concord. We do have an isolation area should your pet need to be separated.
Q: Can I bring other stuff for my pet?
A: A favorite toy or chewies are ok, as is a shirt or hand towel from home with your scent on it. We are not responsible for lost items so please do not bring your husbands favorite shirt or part of your matched set of towels. We provide bedding and blankets and wash it all daily and prefer that you do not bring your pet’s bed as they frequently chew them up and/or pee on them. If you have an elderly dog who needs an orthopedic bed, by all means bring it. If your pet likes to sleep in his crate, assuming it can be fit into our kennel, please remove the door prior to bringing it to the kennel. Same goes for cats!
Q: Can you walk my dog while staying with you?
A: We offer neighborhood walks on our private roads. Be aware that once you turn off Pine Lane on the way to the kennel you are on our property. We do not like to walk dogs off premises due to off leash dogs that are sometimes in the neighborhood. Our facility is on several acres and there are plenty of opportunities for your dogs to run and play in the sunshine unlike other facilities that are all indoors and the only way to exercise them is to walk dogs down busy streets.
Q: What is the cancellation policy?
A: For most of the year we ask for a couple days notice to cancel.
For holidays, there is a cancellation policy that we will explain to you at the time of reservation. For major holidays such as Christmas, Thanksgiving and Spring Break, it is three weeks.