Dog Daycare & Dog Boarding

621 Old Hickory Blvd, Nashville, TN 37209
Behind Sonics and across from Sam's Club

What kind of training does your staff have?
Ruff Dog prides itself on educating our Play Group Supervisors. Many of our team members have a background in animal care and are required to complete extensive coursework on safe off-off leash play, canine body language & behavior during their new-hire training which includes a 16 module program taught by The Dog Gurus. All new Ruff Dog team members are also sent annually for their Pet First Aid & CPR certifications.

Is training for my dog involved? If so, what kind?
Our play group supervisors reinforce positive behaviors throughout the day. While participating in our daycare or boarding program, dogs are encouraged to exhibit appropriate play styles, to respond to their name quickly, and practice basic obedience manners. Our supervisors use positive reinforcement, redirection and plenty of tasty treats to reward pups for their good behavior.

  • Practicing Recall – Supervisors call dog’s names throughout the day during play and ask them to “come” when called.
  • Positive Reinforcement – pats, cuddles, treats and praise to reward appropriate behaviors.
  • Quick Time-Outs – Supervisors use time-outs to demonstrate the certain behaviors are not permitted while playing. For example: Bullying, mounting, marking, excessive mouthing, excessive barking, etc. Time outs are also used to provide pups with a quick moment to calm themselves down in order to prevent over-excitement. During time-outs, dogs are placed on-leash, in one of our rooms, or inside a crate.

While Ruff Dog does not offer any specific training programs, we are elated to have many wonderful referrals across Nashville if you are looking to requested to spruce up your pups obedience, socialization or specialized training skills.


Is There a nap time?

All dogs need rest after strenuous play and stimulation. Due to the high level of activity and play throughout the day, all dogs will be encouraged to take a mid-day nap between 12-2pm. Daycare guests will enjoy sharing some quiet time with lavender aromatherapy with their friends. Those that need extra encouragement to settle-in for a snooze will be placed in one of our rooms or inside of a crate.

Where do the dogs go to the bathroom?
Our pups enjoy a healthy amount of time outdoors when weather permits. Potty breaks are typically every half hour and on our nice days, dogs may come and go as they please. During any extreme weather, they are given the opportunity to go outdoors often, however there may be occasional accidents which are picked up immediately and cleaned with a disinfectant to prevent the spread of germs and virus.

What is done in case of an emergency?
Ruff Dog makes every effort to provide a safe and pleasant experience for your pup. However, even in the safest of environments, there is a risk in allowing a group of dogs to play together. Should a pet be injured or fall ill, owners will be contacted immediately and the pup will be transported to the appropriate medical clinic. Costs arising from medical care will be billed to the owner upon check-out.

How do you keep the facility clean with all the dogs coming in and out?
The staff of Ruff Dog cleans the facility daily with a special cleaner and disinfectant designed for use in pet care facilities. At the end of every day all toys, bowls and surfaces inside and out are cleaned and disinfected. Our outdoor yards are scooped promptly after a dog eliminates and are disinfected & treated twice weekly.

Are there any breed restrictions?
No. We carefully evaluate each individual dog and are confident with our experience and our ability to recognize potentially problematic behaviors in a dog, regardless of its breed.

What behaviors make a dog incompatible for daycare?
For the safety of our supervisors and other dogs, there are behaviors that cannot be tolerated in an off-leash play setting. Aggressive behavior toward people or dogs, extreme fear or shyness, fence climbing/jumping and repeated acts of domination (like mounting) cannot be tolerated. Dogs also need to know their names well and have their basic obedience cues established so our staff can safely guide and redirect them throughout the day. If such behaviors continue to happen after several time-outs and attempts at training, our supervisors will contact you to discuss whether or not our facility is a good match for your pups needs.

What if my dog doesn’t like other dogs? Is there a separate area for dogs that don’t get along with others?
While we do have areas that we can use to separate dogs if absolutely necessary, our facility is not a suitable establishment for dogs that require their own space. Fortunately, there are plenty of great options in and around Nashville for dogs that cannot be socialized, or that require more restricted/selective socialization. Feel free to call us, and we’ll give you some recommendations.

What are your hours? Does my dog need to arrive at a certain time?
We are open for daycare Monday through Friday 7:00 am to 7:00 pm, and are closed for daycare on Saturdays and Sundays.
We do require all guests to arrive during the weekdays for daycare AND boarding between the hours of 7am-10am so their energy level matches those already in the building. Dogs coming in later in the day have a harder time adjusting to the already calming crew and disrupt the flow of the day. Any late drop-off must be approved by the Ruff Crew and an additional $5.00 per half-hour late fee will be applied. Pick-up is between 2:00pm and 7:00pm but may be done earlier with notice.  After 7p.m. there is a late pick up fee of $1.00 per minute up to 20 minutes. If your dog is still in the building after 7:20 pm they will be boarded overnight at the owner’s expense in addition to the $20 late fee.
Pick-ups and Drop-offs are available over the weekend for our boarding guests between 8:00a.m. – 10:00am and from 5:00pm – 7:00pm.

Do I need to make a reservation before I come in?
YES! Ruff dog does require a reservation for your pup’s trial day, daycare and boarding visits with us. Being safely staffed is one of our top priorities and to make sure our foot to paw ratio fits the industry standards and each dog has plenty of space to play and enjoy themselves, we need to know how many dogs will be joining us each day. We encourage our clients to have their pup on a recurring schedule with us for their daycare visits which guarantees them a spot every week and provides their pup with a routine to keep them happy and engaged. Last minute requests may not be approved once we have reached our cap for the day.

What do I bring when my dog spends the night?
Spare your pup a potential upset belly and bring in their food from home. All food should either be pre-bagged or in a sealed container for proper storage. All medications need to be in their original bottle with the correct instructions on the label and will be reviewed and documented at check-in.
**Remember to always pack extra food and medications (if required) in the event an additional day is needed due to weather conditions or transportation delay/cancellations.
We gladly provide all of our guests with a comfy raised Kuranda bed along with food & water bowls to make your pet feel right at home. Beds and blankets from home are permitted with the understanding that they may not be returned in the condition they arrived in (in the event of a bathroom accident or a bored mouth overnight).
We encourage you to provide an assortment of long lasting chew toys (bully sticks, nylabones, kongs, marrow bones, antlers, etc) that can preoccupy your pup’s time while they are in their room so they don’t resort to chewing on beds, blankets or door frames if they get bored. Small treats and toys are great, but rarely will your dog engage with these for more than a couple of minutes on their own. The longer lasting treats provide your dog with a way to preoccupy their time and mind if they get a little anxious or worked up before or after their play time. We also have frozen peanut butter & pumpkin stuffed Kongs along with Bully Sticks and Whizzy Sticks available for purchase at check-in. We do allow toys from home but do not allow any that squeak or make noise for the peace and quiet of the neighboring pups. Rawhides are not permitted and will not be supplied to our guests due to the potential dangers they cause.

More Questions? Please don’t hesitate to ask! Contact Us!