Camp Bow Wow requires all of our Campers to be a minimum of 4 months old (for health, vaccination and safety purposes) but we have no age limit for our older Campers. This makes many people question if older dogs can enjoy Camp and why Camp would be beneficial to their not-so-playful-anymore senior dog.
Camp has benefits for young dog as well as old dogs. While you might be happy they’ve outgrown their puppy phase of chewing, nipping and running all over the house you want to keep their minds and their bodies active and keep them young in body and at heart.
Here are 5 benefits of bringing your senior dog to Camp:
- Exercise-even in the “golden years” it’s important for your dog to stay active. Exercise increases blood flow, releases toxins and improves bowl movement. Regular exercise can slow the aging progress and advancement of arthritis and keeps muscles from atrophy.
- Mental stimulation-Dogs can suffer from their own version of dementia, after all…the brain is a muscle and also needs exercise! The smells, sounds and excitement of Camp are great forms of mental stimulation and activate all the senses.
- Supervision-While your dog might just sleep at home all day, you’re probably less inclined to pay close attention to them when they’re in their older years. They are more self-sufficient and less active but they are also at higher risk for health concerns. Having them at Camp means they are being supervised by our Certified Camp Counselors. We know your dog and can make you aware of signs of pain or illness that you may not be aware of if your dog is home alone.
- Mentor-It’s true…everyone needs a role model and older dogs can tell puppies by scent, the “puppy breath” we love indicates to older dogs that they are puppies (it smells like their mothers milk) and need to be schooled in the rules of the pack. The older dogs teach the younger ones boundaries and appropriate behaviors that they can only learn from other dogs.
- It keeps them young-It’s true, being members of the same species, dogs communicate with each other on a way we never could. Socializing gives them exercise, mental stimulation and a purpose. It keeps their mind and bodies active and keeps them young.
If you’re worried your older dog will over do it, not to worry. You’ll see plenty of places in the play yards that the senior dogs have claimed for their own for an afternoon nap. We’re happy to notate any medical concerns or warnings on your dogs account and can give them additional breaks as necessary. We even have a “senior lounge” where they can relax in cushioned comfort and quiet.
Older dogs who’ve never been socialized may find the Camp environment a bit overwhelming at first. If you’re planning on an overnight boarding stay and your dog has never really been extensively socialized, bring them in for their FREE day of play as early as possible, that will allow them a few extra daycare visits before they stay overnight. It will make them much more comfortable and it will be less stressful for them.