Q & A
The Bark Shack FAQ includes information that will prove helpful to our customers. For further information, please contact us today.
Q. Are reservations required?
A. Most often, YES.
Boarding reservations are always required for all guests.
Daycare reservations are required on FRIDAYS for all guests. If your pet is a "Reserved Player", daycare reservations will be required everytime.
The eastiest way to make a reservation is by texting our Front Desk Text Only number at (843)505-7859.
Q. What vaccinations are required for my dog to stay/play at The Bark Shack?
A. For a healthy environment, we require RABIES VACCINE, DHLPP & BORDETELLA. All are available through your vet.
Q. What if my vet prefers to not vaccinate older pets or immune deficient pets?
A. No worries! Your vet can provide a letter or send us an email, explaining the health of your pet. As long as your pet is healthy and has NO infectious illnesses, he/she is welcome to visit us. Most often, we will require that non-vaccinated pets be private during their stay.
Q. What if my pet gets fleas while visiting The Bark Shack?
A. It is every pet owners responsibility to provide a flea preventative for their pet. As long as your pet is covered with an effective method, you should have no problem with other pets "hygiene" problem.
Q. Pets get worms. How do you help in preventing that?
A. We pick up all fecal matter in a very timely manner. In addition, our play yards have soft synthetic grass or specially built decking. We wash/clean these yards every day. Twice weekly, we spray our yards with vet-approved antifungal/disinfectant specially designed for the pet industry. This destroys all eggs/remnants of the parasites. HOOK worms & WHIP worms cannot survive. Also, with a flea preventative, as listed above, any chance of contracting TAPE worm is minimized.
Q. What vaccinations are required for cats?
A. We require all cats to be vaccinated against Rabies, Feline Distemper (Panleukopenia), Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis (Herpes Virus-specific to cats), and FeLV (Feline Leukemia.)
Q. What if I cannot reach my vet for the paperwork before his/her first visit?
A. If vaccination requirements are not met, we may refuse service. In certain circumstances however, we can provide alternative options. These include:
For canines: One of the three vaccines that we require, Bordetella, can be bought at Tractor Supply. This vaccine provides protection against an airborne, canine respiratory infection. If you supply this intranasal vaccination, we can administer it to your dog at no additional charge. This is specifically a precaution and benefit to your OWN dog's health. Your dog will still need to be in private play until all required vaccination records have been received. Until then, you will be charged accordingly for reserved pricing. Please continue reading for additional information about all health regulations.
For all pets (including canines):
We will provide our own assessment of your pet's current health. We are not medical professionals and any assessment is not to be perceived as veterinary comments. However, we do have substantial experience in the pet industry and after our assesment we will form our own qualified opinion. We will examine your pet's eyes, nose, skin, hair, breathing/coughing, and fecal. If your pet passes our assesment, your pet can visit, but, must stay in a private reserved area & cannot socialize until your proof of ALL vaccinations arrive. Until then, you will be charged accordingly for reserved pricing.
Q. What if my pet has all required vaccinations, but ONE is a month overdue?
A. We do offer a grace period. Length of a grace period depends on the vaccine that is overdue. Please call if you have questions.
Q. Can I open an account with you?
A. Yes! Those that wish to open an account must leave us a credit/debit card on file. This allows you to come & go throughout the week without having to wait for the payment process every day. We let your charges accumulate throughout the week, then run your card on Wednesdays.
Q. What is required from the owner?
A. All pet owners & facilities are responsible to ensure a happy kenneling/daycare experience.
We need from you:
- A copy of your pet's vaccinations. You can bring them in.
Alternatively, your vet can email these to us at Frontdesk@thebarkshack.com or you may text a clear, full-page, picture of the record to 843-505-7859.
- Vaccinations need to be up to date and not expired.
- If no vaccinations have been administered to your pet, we will need a detailed letter from your vet.
- Credit Card on file for boarding services & "On Account" daycare agreements.
- Payment for all services rendered upon pick-up (or weekly billing for "ON ACCOUNTS")
- Remember, though we love all dogs, some guests might only prefer THEIR dog.
- Please don't let your dog jump on other pets or guests in our lobby/parking lot.
- A Signed contract and other necessary forms.
- An updated phone number or email address EVERY TIME you board with us.
- All updated information should you move homes throughout our city.
Q. What is included when my dog (or cat) stays overnight?
A. We try to make it easy for the owners. You don't HAVE to bring anything!
- The meals you choose :
- Pedigree Kibble with warm Au Jus is no cost.
- Grain Free is available at $3 per meal.
- We can also serve your own food brought from home.
(Additional prep time could result in additional charges, depending on what is required.)
- We will serve a raw diet if you prefer.
- The meal TIME you prefer. Our standard feeding times are 6:30a, 12noon, & 7p. We can feed at a custom time or additional time at no extra charge.
- A warm snuggly bed. You can send your own bed from home or use our standard beds at no extra cost. Please know, some pets will chew their own beds when kenneled, even though they may never chew them at home. Depending on your type of bed, we may or may not wash it upon your pet's departure. You can upgrade to a Therapeudic Bed or Kuranda cot for a minimal charge.
- Play Time: If your pet is sociable & you agree for him/her to play with others, he may participate in our playtime program at no extra cost. There are also several available activities we offer for purchase. Please see our list of activities.
Q. What if my dog "changes" and becomes a RESERVED player?
A. Remember! If your pet requires "certain circumstances" due to un-altered, aggressive, or un-ruly DOG behavior, then your pet will be a RESERVED player. If your pet is a PRIMARY player, but his behavior changes for any reason (age, confidence, etc.) and he/she is the cause for unacceptable behavior, then you will be notified. We will focus on the safety of all pets and we may require that your dog only be a reserved player from that point onward. If your pet has been transferred to RESERVED play, please discuss with us. Together we will plan, to hopefully, re-introduce him/her to Primary Play at a later date if behavioral changes are met.
Q. Is it possible for my RESERVED player dog to ever become a Primary player?
A. Yes! There are several reasons this can happen. Perhaps your pet was a RESERVED player simply because he/she had not been spayed/neutered yet. Once that is completed, usually, they can socialize in Primary play. In addition, there are occasions when dogs become more sociable once they acclimate to the new surroundings. This positive step often results in a re-classification of his/her playgroup. Please know, just because you prefer your pet to be a PRIMARY player, doesn’t mean they can! Each pet must meet the all necessary guidelines.
Q. What if I prefer my credit card to be run on a different day than Wednesday?
A. No Worries! Let us know what day works for you & we will accommodate. Please know, we only let one week accumulate. In addition, if you choose Tuesday, as your billing day, we won't allow switching to Monday one week, then Friday the next. We require a consistent billing day.
Q. What other ways can I pay?
A. We accept all credit cards. We also accept checks, and of course, cash. Options:
- Open account, as listed above.
- Pay each day as you come to visit.
- Pay in advance. Some prefer to pay a week in advance, or perhaps pay $100 or so, and when the money runs out, we will let you know.
Q. How does your billing work if I board my dog for 3 weeks?
A. First, we will spoil him rotten. In regards to payment, anything over ONE week, we must have a card on file. We will run your card weekly. We do offer long term discounts, anything longer than 12 nights. And remember, multi-pet discounts apply the very first day.
Q. Can I pay monthly payments for a boarding reservation?
A. We will agree to this ONLY if the monthly payments are made prior to your departure & any remaining balance paid immediately upon your pets check out.
Q. How does THE BARK SHACK determine the playgroup for my dog?
A. All new guests (for Boarding & Playcare) are assessed to determine their social skills. Assessments take approximately 4 hours to complete and do require a reservation! Our staff is trained to watch your pet's behavior from the moment you bring him/her through our front door. This initial observation, combined with your personality description, & whether spayed/neutered, is our beginning stage. We will give them time to acclimate to their surroundings privately, then we will introduce to a playmate we believe may be suitable. Please read the "Doggy Daycare" page for more information.
Q. Do I need to set up an appointment before his first day?
A. Yes. Reservations are required for all new dogs. Please call our office at (843)757-0888 or text our Front Desk at (843)505-7859.
Q. What personal belongings may I bring for my pet while boarding?
A. We PRIDE ourselves on offering everything. We want to make pet ownership easy for you. With that said, please feel free to bring anything that may make your pet feel more comfortable. We offer standard beds to EVERY PET that needs one. You can bring your own, or pay $3 for an upgrade THERAPEUPETIC BED or KURANDA STYLE COT. Our standard beds are NO CHARGE. Pets that are OPEN BOARDING may not have personal beds due to becoming possessive. They CAN have kennel beds. Our older, private guests keep their beds all day.
Q. Is food included in the price of Boarding? Daycare? Can I bring my own?
A. We gladly offer Pedigree Complete Nutrition Kibble. This is at NO COST to our BOARDING guests. For Daycare/Grooming guests, we simply charge $1. We also offer a PREMIUM GRAIN FREE for a $3 upcharge for all guests. Some customers prefer to bring their own food from home. This is totally acceptable and we will feed them accordingly.
Q. Can I schedule a bath or a complete groom for my pet while boarding? Or during Daycare?
A. Of course! We will gladly "Pimp your Pooch" with the Complete Works Dog Groom. If a bath and nail trim is all you prefer, we can (most often) accomodate at any time. A complete groom (hair-clipping) requires a reservation made in advance. If you are having a bath after boarding, please clarify what time you will be picking up so we can schedule you pet's spa day correctly.
Q. What if my time-away gets extended and my pet needs to stay longer?
A. Just keep us in the loop, inform us of all delays and we will happily keep your pet longer as long as we have the availability. If you let us know of this change last minute and we have already completed your scheduled baths, you may be charged for a second bath (if you or your pet require it.) If you are 7 days after your declared departure date, and we still have not heard from you or your emergency contact, your pet may be at risk of being classified as abandoned. Please see our contract for further information.
Q. Why would someone choose a private kennel instead of open boarding?
A. In some cases, this is simply the owners' personal preference. In other cases, some dogs may be aggressive, or very feeble and the pet needs his/her private space. Open boarding is a social arrangement for like-minded dogs. It is a bit less expensive for the owner, and pets enjoy the "pack," helping them feel more confident & safe. Many owners choose private boarding at night, but social playtime during the day. Let us know what you prefer.
Q. What if I board my pet and he/she is just miserable?
A. We will try many alternative actions to try and make her feel comfy, perhaps a different playroom or a private kennel. Maybe she would be better in the front office with humans. We sincerely want all guests to feel comfortable & safe. And we love for them to have FUN! If your pet simply cannot acclimate and we are worried that her stress could be unsafe for her, we will contact you.
Q. Why do you ask for emergency phone numbers?
A. The perfect example is the one listed above. If your pet isn't having a good time, perhaps a family member, or someone else the pet knows, could help. Veterinarians often prefer another contact should your pet become ill.