Frequently Asked Questions

What is your COVID-19 protocol?
When COVID cases are high and a mask mandate is in place, we follow the following protocols:
Customer Interactions:
Our small lobby is easy to keep disinfected and safe for both staff and clients. Staff who interact with the public are required to wear a mask. Doorknobs are disinfected between clients and hands are sanitized between handling different dogs’ gear. Phone and credit card terminals which may be touched by multiple people are disinfected regularly. Payments will be taken care of over the phone as much as possible

Our parking lot allows those waiting to spread out. Clients can either wait outside to collect their dog when it is their turn, or come into the lobby. Please come into the lobby if your dog may be a flight risk if the leash is handed off to you at the door!!! Only one client, or multiple people from the same household, are allowed in the lobby at a time.

Retail Sales: Clients are encouraged to touch only what they will buy, though our small store is easy to disinfect between clients. Clients can call to have us pull retail items  for pick up later in the day. Clients can also take retail items and pay later by phone. Payment can occur in the lobby if no other client is waiting in the parking lot.

Playroom Safety: Dog handlers wash hands frequently as a matter of course. We handle urine and feces regularly, and vomit and diarrhea on occasion. It is hard to go five minutes in the playroom without needed a hand wash.

The Triple Two disinfectant we use on the playroom floor has been certified effected against the COVID virus, as well as numerous other contagious illnesses. We also use a diluted bleach solution for some applications.

Zoonosis: We keep current on new understandings of COVID-19’s ability to infect animals, particularly dogs. Current research shows that dogs, unlike cats, are poor transmitters of the virus. We are consulting regularly with a professional in the biotech field who specifically handles COVID-19 research and if new information is discovered that links dogs to COVID-19 transmission, we will be informed.

Where is Fuzzy Buddy’s located?
We are at 10907 Aurora Avenue North, Seattle 98133, just south of Evergreen-Washelli Cemetery on the west side of the street. Coming from the south, look for our big yellow sign on the left side of the road.  Coming from the north, our sign is obscured by the cemetery’s trees. The Rose Corner is our neighbor to the south. Hansen Brothers Moving is across the street.

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. There is also parking off 109th in the neighborhood behind us. Please do not park by the Rose Corner. Please keep your dog on leash in the parking lot and lobby.

Our parking lot is small and works best when people keep their visits short during the busy times of 6:30-10 am and 4-7 pm. If you want to give your dog a potty walk before or after daycare, please park in the neighborhood or the cemetery parking lot and walk to us. If you need to take a long phone call, we suggest parking in a bigger, and more scenic, parking lot to do so.

Please keep the handicapped parking spot open for the clients who rely on it. 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.

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, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, and Independence Day. This gives us a chance to do maintenance on the playroom.

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. We will email you back with any additional questions we have about your dog and arrange a trial day.

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 observed by the current owner. You must have had your dogs in off-leash group play situations involving dogs of all sizes at least six times before your trial day.

Pay attention to your dog’s play style during your off-leash group play excursions. Was he nervous or uninterested in playing? Wallflowers are welcome at Fuzzy Buddy’s as long as the dog is not so nervous they snap, growl or bark at other dogs for social distance. Did his play style scare you, other dog owners or his play partners? Let us know the details of what you observed and we’ll figure out if daycare will be a good environment for him.

All daycare dogs must tolerate socially inept puppies, clumsy adolescents, and boisterous older dogs without getting snappy or confrontational. 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 the posturing preludes to that behavior.)

On the trial day, we 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. Many dogs start out nervous but blossom into more confident dogs as relationships develop with new friends.

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 on the receiving end of aggression frequently, study dog body language and observe your dog’s signaling 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 their sounds trigger a predatory response in the dogs around them.

* Dogs who guard space, toys, water, bones, or people might guard in the playroom. We want all dogs to have a good time. Dogs who guard objects or spaces in the playroom creates stress for the dogs 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, 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 and respect those who decide to leave their dogs intact. Sometimes sexual hormones cause chaos in the daycare playroom and we will direct you to other exercise options if we notice that happening.

Most dog daycares require neutering by six months of age. We accept intact male dogs up to 18 months of age. When inappropriate hormone-induced behaviors like obsessive shadowing or mounting get in the way of healthy play, we will recommend your dog stay home from daycare until neutered. Often an intact male behaves perfectly in the playroom, but is the recipient of inappropriate mounting or shadowing 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.

Hormone-inspired behaviors (from the intact dog or the neutered dogs around them) WILL get in the way of healthy play, usually between 7 and 14 months of age. We have only had one intact male (a giant Newfoundland) make it to 18 months without needing a break from daycare.

When your dog gets neutered, we may recommend up to a 4-week break in daycare attendance to ensure all the hormones are gone before return.

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. Please remember, the issue is not always the unspayed or unneutered dog’s behavior, but the reaction of the other dogs to him or her.

Can I stop by to check Fuzzy Buddy’s out?
Sure! Stop by anytime! We have a window in the lobby that allows you to see the whole main playroom. We may not be able to show you the downstairs space between 8 am and 5 pm.

We are very busy with drop off and pick up activity from 7-10 am and from 3-7 pm.  If you anticipate having questions, we may not be able to answer them efficiently. The lobby is more leisurely between 10 and 3. 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.  New dogs wear harnesses in the playroom, so please dress 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!
Daycare Application 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 and 9:30 am on their first day. Most dogs do well with a trial day that is at least five hours long. 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, let’s 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 but not so long that he gets overly tired by the activity.

Please call to check in and see how your dog is doing. If your dog is stressed or tired, and you have the ability to pick up early, that may help day #2 go better. It’s good to leave them wanting more! 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 to the starter area in the playroom and introduce your dog to a few low-key dogs.  As your dog gets more comfortable, we will introduce  more dogs until we can integrate him into the main action.  You are welcome to watch through the window in our lobby for as long as you would like. If your dog sees you through the window, however, he might orient to the window and get stressed, so keep your observation stealthy!

Can I call during the day to check on my dog?
Absolutely! (206) 782- 4321

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. 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 food for them.  Energetic players might need to refuel during a long day.

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.

Deep-chested dogs at risk for bloat will be given long rest breaks after meals.

If we notice your active dog gets hangry near the end of the day, or is spitting up bile, we will suggest you start bringing a small lunch.

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. Some 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. You are always welcome to call us last minute to see if there is space available. We maintain a wait list for the days we are full.

Here is how to reserve or cancel a day:

Cancellation Policy:
Let us know asap if you need to cancel a reserved day. Cancellations should be received by 6:30 pm the night before to avoid being charged for the day. 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 and you will be charged a fee.

No Show Policy:
Dogs who are No Shows for a specific day of the week three consecutive weeks in a row will lose their standing reservation for that day of the week. Losing your reservations may mean you will be wait-listed for that day until a recurring spot opens up.

If you are a No Show four times in any four-week period, we will charge you for future missed days until two months have passed with no additional No Shows. You will receive a yellow warning after two No Shows, and a red slip on the fourth, warning you of upcoming charges for No Shows. The charges will be made by either punching your daycare pass or asking you for payment upon your dog’s return to daycare.

We have never had to enact the above No Show Policy because our clients are awesome people who thoughtfully cancel unneeded reservations!!!!

Is there a discount if I have more than one dog?
There is a discount for multiple dog households! See our Rates page for more details.

What if my dog gets injured while at daycare?
If a dog is injured, we will tend to the injury as quickly as possible. Our playroom staff have pet first aid training.  If the injury 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 allergies or tracheal damage from collars. If you know 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 90 dogs come to Fuzzy Buddy’s any given day.  Some dogs come for just a few hours, some for short 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.

There is a mixture of small and large dogs on each floor, which is why all dogs must be comfortable and appropriate around dogs of all sizes.

Do the dogs ever fight?
Many dogs play hard with each other, particularly if they know each other well.  They may wrestle or chew on each other. 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 not respecting the cut-off signals (“calming signals”) from his playmates.  Fights occasionally occur when the excitement level gets too high.  We prevent this by redirecting play before it escalates in intensity.  This keeps 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 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 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. Only a vet can identify when a medical issue is contributing to a weight gain, and treating those medical issues will lead to a better level of health for your dog.

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 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 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. 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 member reach the bathroom door. That process takes time and can create over-arousal and stress for the dogs. Lowe’s and Home Depot, up the street from us, both have bathrooms. Lowe’s bathroom is at the front of the store and is always clean. It is faster to drive there than to wait for us to clear the playroom!