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Dogtopia opens with an arf, arf

Dogtopia opens with an arf, arf

Dogtopia, an award-winning dog daycare, boarding and spa provider, opened its first Eastern Canada location and flagship store in Mississauga in March 2015. The 7,400-square-foot facility, located at 1100 Burnhamthorpe Road West, is designed with the best interests of dogs in mind and features three large playrooms, a 5-star inspired spa and the latest camera technology, allowing owners to check-in on their pets. The webcam is on 7 am – noon then off for naptime back on again from 2 pm – 7 pm. Dogtopia is committed to providing exceptional care to canines and their families.


Dogtopia supports dogs being dogs by encouraging dog-to-dog interaction rather than dog to human. Dogtopia’s trained room attendants act as “lifeguards,” and are there to maintain safe play between the dogs. Dogs can become possessive of humans, which can lead to injuries.


Dogtopia’s floors allow true sanitization that isn’t possible on cement, gravel or pebbles, which many other facilities use. Many breeds are prone to hip dysplasia and the use of compressed rubber flooring can promote the long-term health of their joints as well as their pads.


Dogtopia dogs are in open play from 7 a.m. to noon and then from 2 p.m. until their parents pick them up. Noon to 2 p.m. is a mandatory rest time for the dogs. Just like children in daycare, dogs need to rest to recharge or they can become clumsy and grumpy. Other dog daycares rotate dogs for short periods of time on tiled or cement floors.


Dogtopia facilities are free from chain link fences; this is because the majority of dog illnesses are airborne in nature. If rooms are separated by full walls, it assists in containing exposure to other dogs when a dog may arrive with an illness. Full walls also promote a much more relaxing day as the dogs are not stimulated by watching dogs of varying size and temperaments.


Dogtopia has a very structured internal certification program including an e-learning university using written, visual and practical learning and certification levels. The curriculum is based on learning the distinct language of dogs.


To ensure that a dog is a good fit for Dogtopia, each one must pass a thorough evaluation. This begins with history, behaviour and health. Each location has an evaluation room that is used to assess whether the dog is a good fit for open play, including a snout-to-tail touch test for sensitivities, crate test and, finally, an intro to dogs of varying play styles in a mini play area. Once a dog is passed, they are assigned the playroom of friends that best matches their personality and needs. If a dog is not ready for open play yet, they can return for a new evaluation after six months. Dogtopia can offer recommendations of trainers in the area and suggestions to assist pet parents in how to socialize their dog to fit into open play.


Dogtopia has one inclusive price, not a la carte, meaning if dog parents have special food needs/medicinal needs for their dogs, Dogtopia will provide it at no extra cost. In fact, if parents forget their food, each dog can be fed house food at no extra cost.


Dogtopia lobbies have digital signage that keeps clients informed about events, promotions, the “Dog of the Week” and educational happenings such as Pet Dental Health Month. Above all else, Dogtopia strives to offer a higher level of client service than its competitors. This client service is built on trust, honesty and putting dogs’ safety, health and happiness as the number one priority.

The company was established in 2002 based on the belief that combining a strong vision, a passion for dogs and a second-to-none executive team would lead to success. With that success, Dogtopia began franchising in 2005. Currently, there are 30 U.S. locations and three in Canada. The Dogtopia system includes both franchise and company-owned stores. Peter Thomas, chairman of Thomas Franchise Solutions, heads the Dogtopia Canada team as Master Franchisor.

“Canadian Dogtopia locations opened to date are in Coquitlam, B.C and Calgary. With the Mississauga opening today, we expect that approximately seven Dogtopia stores will open in Canada during 2015,” said Thomas.

“Dogtopia is unlike any other dog daycare provider currently in Canada, employing purpose-built, climate controlled, state-of-the-art facilities,” said Anita Samadian, Dogtopia regional developer for Eastern Canada. “Dogs attending Dogtopia enjoy fun, engaging and safe days, while their family members are at work or on vacation.”