Central Bark

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Central Bark | Dog Daycare, Boarding, Grooming Open Til 9PM in Colorado Springs

Dog Daycare, Boarding & Grooming in Colorado Springs

IMPORTANT NOTICE!! After 13 years of operation, Central Bark is CLOSED as of Friday, October 3, 2014.

It has been our pleasure to serve you and care for your dogs. However, the building is for sale and it is time for a change. This website will remain up, and will be modified to include information on how to choose the right dog daycare/boarding facility for your dog. Also, there will be a link so that grooming clients can easily find our wonderful groomer, Tara. The email link available under the Contact/Hours tab will also continue to be functional, if you have questions or concerns. As the loyal staff find new positions at other dog care facilities, this website will be updated with that information - so maybe your dog can recognize a familiar face!

Please note - if you are an investor and have been given a tour by an employee (now former employee) wishing to start her own dog daycare/boarding business, those tours were unauthorized by the owner. The only authorized tours of the building have been conducted by realtors - the listing is now being managed by the London Group.

If you are a kennel owner interested in purchasing equipment, please stay tuned for more information.

Please join us on Facebook. Become one of our FB Fans and continue to access information on dogs and their care. Please note: you can click on this link even if you do not have a Facebook account, and view our Photo Albums - you might even find a photo of your dog!

Dog daycare, boarding and grooming facilities are abundant in the Colorado Springs area. Men's Health magazine named Colorado Springs the Best City for Dogs in 2008, and our city earned top marks for the number of dog boarding and daycare facilities. This is great news for dog owners, who have a variety of dog care options to choose from.

Some dog daycare/boarding kennels are quite large, averaging more than 60 dogs per day, others are operated out of an individual's home and limited to 10 dogs or less, and some are in the middle. Some facilities are indoor/outdoor, some are indoors only. Play group management styles vary widely - some facilities emphasize dogs playing with dogs and minimize human intervention, while others emphasize tailoring activities to the individual dogs (some of which may prefer more human attention). Some facilities discourage the active, rougher play while others allow it within limits (and the limits vary!). The amount of play time varies as well. Due to staffing constraints, some kennels may rotate the boarding dogs in and out of the play groups to maintain proper staff:dogs ratio (required, not recommended, by the Colorado Department of Agriculture to be 1 supervisor:15 dogs). Some facilities accept special needs dogs (such as geriatric dogs, diabetic dogs, etc.) while others do not. Some have breed bans and/or spay/neuter requirements, others do not. There are several franchises in town, as well as independent operations. Hours of operation vary widely as well, but most dog daycares open early and close late to accomodate the owners' work schedules. In the end, there really is a facility suited for every canine need.

Dog Daycare/Boarding/Grooming Services at Central Bark

Open since 2001, Central Bark is a mid-sized kennel offering dog daycare, boarding, and grooming. We are not the biggest, and have no desire to be so. We're happy to be "Middle of the Pack" when it comes to size, but "Leader of the Pack" when it comes to personal care and service. Our focus is on providing a personalized experience for your dog, and convenience and peace of mind for you, the owner. We do get to know, and love, your dog!

Reasons to Consider Central Bark for Your Dog Daycare, Boarding and Grooming Needs

DOGS COME FIRST!: Our business decisions are always based on what is best for the dogs. Period. Some examples - we do not require the new Canine Flu vaccine, but we recommend you discuss this option with your vet. Although it might be wonderful for Central Bark if all dogs had this conditionally approved vaccination, we simply will not require this vaccine at this time (for a disease that in our experience has not been fatal - more info on this topic under the FAQ). Also, although it would reduce employee hours by at least half if we rotated the small dogs playtime with the large dogs, dogs play all day here with the exception of breakfast time (before 7 am), nap time (12:30pm-3pm), and dinner time (6-6:30 pm). The final playtime of the day is now 6:30pm-8:30pm. Since the dogs are well supervised, those who want to snooze do - they just have a choice rather than spending half their time in forced confinement. Also, we always offer a free introductory day of daycare (available at no charge Mon-Fri; a $10 fee per dog is charged Sat-Sun) - this is not another revenue opportunity, it is for the well-being of the dogs. The dog owners come close behind the dogs as evidenced by our convenient hours. We are open until 9pm 7 days a week (except on holidays). There is no extra charge to pickup boarding dogs between 7-9 pm. There is a $5 fee when a daycare dog is picked up between 7-9pm, unless a premium daycare package was purchased.

FACILITY: Our kennel facility has rubber floors that are easy on the large dogs' joints, and artificial turf areas. We have swamp coolers for summer cooling, and to provide extra ventilation during cooler seasons. Our playgroups are visible from the lobby. The primary sleeping area is in a separate room; we are happy to provide a tour so you can view that area. There is nothing to hide so the cleaning is constant, and you can easily view where your dog will play. We have sealed concrete floors with floor drains for ease of sanitation. Every kennel is disinfected daily. Central Bark has a variety of overnight accomodations to suit your dog's size and privacy needs.

STAFF: The Central Bark staff is second to none. Most dog handlers are over 21, many have education beyond high school, and many have animal experience beyond that of a typical pet owner. The owner/manager is onsite at least 8 hours/day during the week, and is often present on weekends as well. We often have one or two high school students who help out after school, but they are always accompanied by an adult. Staff retention is good, so even the "occasional boarding" dog will likely return to find familiar faces.

PLAY GROUPS: The dogs are separated into play groups primarily based on size, although temperament and owner requests are also taken into consideration. We do encourage both dog/dog and dog/handler interaction here, and we do allow active play as long as one dog is not bullying another. We do not ban any particular breed, such as pit bulls. All social dogs are allowed, and monitored to be sure they remain social. Our staffing level often exceeds that required by the Department of Agriculture, which is the main reason that we can let the dogs be rowdy and also give the dogs individual attention. Also, we usually do not need to rotate dogs in and out of play group - every social dog plays ALL DAY except for meal times and nap times. We are a collarless facility (see the FAQs for why) and every staff member is required to be able to tell one Black Lab from another! When you call to check on your dog, whoever answers the phone should know who your dog is (although might have to check with another staff member for more details).

SPECIAL NEEDS: If you have a special needs dog, we are happy to help. If you have a dog needing confinement after a surgery, we offer convalescent daycare at a reduced price (the dog is confined and walked outdoors to relieve itself, and we will administer medications as instructed). Although we cannot accept overtly agressive dogs, our low-key desensitization approach has helped shy, timid dogs become more confident. We cater to small dogs at a special low daycare rate, so if you have a small dog looking for a good time, come check us out.

CONVENIENCE - OPEN UNTIL 9:00 PM!: Central Bark is open every day of the year, including holidays. We do not close for the lunch hour. We are open from 6:30 am-9:00 pm Monday - Friday. On weekends we are open from 8:00 am - 9:00 pm (we do not close during the middle of the day). If you need to drop-off or pick up your dog before 8:00 am on Sat/Sun, you may do so as early as 6:30 am for an additional fee of $5. We have limited hours on holidays, but are open for a few hours in the morning and late afternoon. See the Contact/Hours page for details.

Grooming at Central Bark

Central Bark offers haircuts, maintenance grooms, full-service bath/brushouts, and also quick "exit baths" as well as ala carte nail trims. Please visit our Grooming page for more details and photos worth a million words.

Training Recommendations

When choosing a trainer, the alphabet-soup after the trainer's name is less impressive then the obedience titles after their dogs' names! Since the Pikes Peak Obedience Club is no longer offering training classes, we refer to Canine Solutions which is located about 10 minutes from Central Bark. Shelley Bergstraser's smooth-coated collies are proof that her methods work. The Owner/Manager has personally trained her obedience-titled Bernese Mountain Dogs with both PPOC and Canine Solutions. Beverly, a long-time Central Bark employee, trains her agility competition dogs at All-Breed Rescue and Training, with wonderful results. Not every dog owner aspires to compete with their dog in performance events, but why not train with the best who do? These trainers' "resumes" are the accomplishments of their own dogs and their students' dogs - remember, actions speak louder than words!

We do limited training at Central Bark. Our primary focus is on basic manners. We also do some "work" (more like play!) with a small (but expanding) selection of agility equipment.

Learn More

Our FAQs provide detailed answers to questions on Health & Safety, Basic Requirements, Facilities/Environment, and Daycare/Boarding. Please enjoy our "Dog of the Month" and "Current News" features, where you can see that at Central Bark, it's all about the dogs!

Let's Talk About Dog Daycare Please click this link for objective information on Dog Daycare written by the American Boarding Kennel Association. Sorry about the formatting - this is a PDF file for a brochure, so the second page is actually the first page. Also, you may need to zoom in to enlarge the text. This brochure is also available as hard-copy at Central Bark, as are other informative ABKA brochures.

Why Daycare is a Treat for your Dog

They won't be sitting at home lonely and bored.
At the end of a busy day, when you're ready to relax, your pooch will be too.
Interaction with other dogs, supervised by trained professionals, builds positive social behaviors.
Lots & lots of loving attention and fun!
Stops stress, separation anxiety and destructive behavior due to boredom.

What a great way to make more human and canine friends.
Always knowing your dog is safe and happy while you are away.
Great fun! Guaranteed.
Copyright 2007-10 by Zyla Enterprises, dba Central Bark Dog Daycare. All rights reserved.