Dog daycare is a dream come true for busy owners who work long hours or simply don’t have the time to exercise high-energy dogs. However, doggy day care isn’t without its costs. How does day care stack up for you and your dog?

Exercise Is the Biggest Benefit
Dog Whisperer Cesar Milan says, “A tired dog is a happy dog,” and while some trainers disagree with his methods, all trainers agree with this truism. When dogs don’t get enough exercise, they find their own ways to entertain themselves. They may destroy shoes, eat remote controls, ruin the couch or even let themselves out to find something to do. Giving your dog enough exercise makes him happy, content and well-mannered, and it can save your home from utter chaos and destruction.

Dogs Are Social Creatures
Dogs are pack animals. They like to interact with other people and dogs. Dog day care gives your dog a chance to have fun with his canine pals while you’re off doing important business. Let your doggy win friends and influence people with his growing social skills thanks to day care. Well-socialized dogs are more likely to get along with other dogs and people, and you can feel comfortable taking them out because you know they’ll behave. The socialization aspect of day care may seem intangible, but it yields very real benefits when you take your dog out in public.

Eliminate Messes when You Have Long Days
Even the best-trained dog has accidents when you ask him to wait too long before going outside. As your dog ages, it may become difficult for him to wait for you to get home for his potty break, and asking your dog to wait too long can actually contribute to incontinence as he gets older. If you can’t get home during the day to give your dog a potty break, doggie day care may be a good alternative. As a rule, you shouldn’t ask your dog to wait more than eight hours for a break, so if you know you’ll have a 10- or 12-hour day coming up, arrange for him to spend the day in day care.

Dog Day Care Costs Can Add up While the benefits of day care are high, the costs can add up quickly. Depending on your location and the specific day care, costs for dog day care can range from $10 to $35 per day, or even more for high-end “spa” day cares. If you’re taking your dog to day care five days a week, you could wind up paying hundreds of dollars per month on day care.For maximum benefits versus cost savings, make day care an occasional treat. Send your dog to day care once or twice per week, and hire a local dog walker on the other days just to give your dog a break. Dog day care is a great supplement to your canine’s social calendar, but it’s not the only solution available.