Updated: Dec 10, 2022
In total we have we have 7 areas available for the dogs, we also have the ability to move our fencing to create more areas or more space.
The photos and videos you see below may differ each time as we tend to move equipment and fencing to suit. Each area's purpose will change throughout the day.
Our puppy room sits just behind our reception area, it has the same flooring we have throughout the centre, which is hygienic safety flooring, the walls are cladded in pallet wood and covered with transparent perspex, our uPVC fencing separates the area from our grooming salon entrance and retail storage.
We have soft play, platforms, a children's slide and tower, 2 ball pits, hanging ropes, low swing, low steps, padded flooring, raised beds, bubble machine, disco ball and lots of toys, balls, teething Nylabones and of course water bowls and puppy start right instructors to supervise and encourage your little ones. We've also got a mini version of our IQ HEPA Air filter to help keep any nasty airborne viruses at bay.
Off the room you will find a door to the garden, one to the dog kitchen, grooming room and the next area. Theres also windows to the outside, through to the main area and our grooming salon so our lucky groomers get to watch puppies whilst they work. Blinds line the windows for when a little more privacy is wanted and central heating if ever needed.
The puppy room is designed to provide a safe opportunity for pups to explore, climb and gain confidence in a hygeinic, soft, playful environment, they're encouraged to run and roll around with their friends, jump the small pieces of soft play and have fun. They're still expected to abide by our centre rules, so no jumping, barking or mounting and all play must be consensual and at the right energy level so there will be lots of practicing sits, recall and the odd time out if needed.
This area is closed when reception is open (7.30am - 9am & 3.30pm-6pm). Even though we have speakers playing music in the room we don't want them getting anxious at the sound of strangers in reception or other dogs arriving. It's also cleaned throughly with our pet friendly, DEFRA approved disinfectants at the end of playtime.
Puppies under 6 months old are welcome in this room and sometimes older or smaller less confident dogs can visit if they need a quieter area to build their confidence when starting their introductions to OPW.
Our main room is split into 5 more areas. The fencing you see can be moved around to suit whichever requirements, and each has a gate into the next area.
The area to the left we refer to as our Small Dog Area, the door can be opened up to the puppy area if needed, and this space is generally used by puppies, or smaller dogs that may prefer the company of other smaller dogs. Depending on the time of day we may use it for snuffle scent work, sometimes we bring the puppy equipment into the area or sometimes we clear all the equipment away and focus on a certain training need. At home time this becomes our rest and wind down area, with beds, crate, and vet bedding. Our Pet Whisperers then sit in the middle with them to keep them relaxed.
The area to the right we call the Main Area. Any dog can go in this area if their personality and confidence level means it's suitable. We have plenty of small dogs who love to mix it up with bigger ones and the aim is to ensure each dog gains the confidence and learns the manners to mix with all sizes and energy levels. The equipment in here changes but generally is the larger platforms, tunnels, slides and slightly more robust toys and balls. As this also has the large main door to the garden, the equipment gets moved in and out depending on the weather or simply to provide some variety. In the storage boxes we have hoops, tall posts, jumps and other fun agility type equipment which is usually saved for the afternoons.
At the back of the room you will see our largest IQ Air Filter, and industrial heater so we can have warm and clear air.
HEPA filtration is the most effective and reliable way of dealing with airborne particle pollution.
Just out of view you can see two other smaller areas, these areas are lounging areas where our hotel rooms open out on to. Currently we usually have beds, and bedding permanently out in these areas, along with chew toys and things for the more chilled daycare guests. Essentially the dogs that are friendly but not as social as the others, so prefer to lounge around for long periods and join in when it suits them. Or simply some who come 5 days as week and need to rest a lot more.
As these are smaller we also sometimes use them for new dogs to spend time when they first arrive if they don't seem like they're ready to meet all the others. It allows them time acclimatise to their new surroundings, whilst spending some 1-2-1 time with a Pet Whisperer and gives them opportunity to have a sniff of some others through the fence.
There is also a chair and small table where our Pet Whisperers spend their breaks or do little bits of admin throughout the day.
This area is due to have a bit of a revamp in 2023 where we aim to provide even more comfort so watch this space for further updates.
Behind the grey wall on the left before the exit to the garden is a multipurpose room. It has some shelves in for storage of vet bedding, and spare beds, it's also used for 1-2-1 training when required. Our Photoshoots are set up in here and sometimes it's a sleep room if we have dogs who need less distraction or extra quiet for their naps.
The large shutters open up the main area to the garden and the majority of the time this shutter stays open. We close it during home time, chill time and if the weather deems it necessary, either too hot or too wet. Generally we can manage all weather, the grass is canine artificial grass. Canine because it is backed with polyurethane, not latex meaning it doesn't absorb urine making it easier to clean and keep hygienic.
We have shades up in the summer, along with paddling pools and sprinklers. The equipment is a mix of children's play equipment and is moved around to suit our needs. We have music playing in our garden as well as the rest of the centre, and privacy screening on our fence so our dogs don't get annoyed by nosey passersby.
In 2021 165 days of rain were recorded in Oxfordshire. Add to that the 40-50 days when its over 25 degrees (too hot for dogs to be outside for too long) , probably the same again for then its below 10 degrees we'd say its even more important to have quality indoor space and by having our shutters open out into the garden we get the best of both worlds.