Dogs acquired during COVID head to boarders as owners return to work


A return to work and travel coupled with the large number of dogs adopted over the pandemic means many boarders and day cares are seeing an influx of pets.

But the large number of pets, coupled with staff shortages, has made day-to-day business a bit harder for such businesses. 

PetSuites and Dogtopia, pet boarding and day care centers in Baton Rouge, have seen a jump in clients since late summer, and both saw a 25% increase in animals in 2021 compared to 2020.

It’s a trend seen across the country, The Washington Post reports, and many day cares and boarders are reporting monthslong waiting lists. 

More people have dogs that they bought in 2020 during the height of the pandemic, says Mac Mccumsey, co-owner of Dogtopia, and more people are traveling and going back to work.

Dog owners are also putting their new dogs in day care to try to socialize them, says Jennifer Foret, resort manager at PetSuites.

However, Foret and her team have also been dealing with staff shortages since business picked up at the end of summer. 

“We’re always struggling to figure out how to take care of the pets in the best manner,” she says. “We still give them services, but we like to go the extra mile, and we can’t always.”

And the issues aren’t likely to end soon, she says. The only thing that would slow things down would be if COVID-19 restrictions, like stay-at-home orders, returned, which doesn’t appear likely.