Additional Boarding Policies


Prior to each visit, we ask you to complete our boarding check-in form.

This form is only for confirming a pre-existing reservation. This form is not for requesting a new reservation. To request a new reservation, please contact Tony directly by email, text, or phone.

To ensure currency, please complete this form only if your dog's boarding visit is less than a week away. We will email you a link to this form in the week leading up to your dog's stay.


All dogs who visit us must be in great current health as defined by the following criteria:

  1. Up-to-date on the following four vaccinations: Rabies, Distemper/Parvo, Bordetella, and Canine Flu (bivalent HN38/HN32). If your dog has not been vaccinated previously for canine flu, the canine flu vax will be administered as a two-shot series. The second shot is given three weeks after the first, and full strength of the vax series occurs two weeks after the second shot (five weeks after the first shot). We cannot care for dogs who are receiving the canine flu vax for the first time until two weeks after they have received the second shot in the two-shot series.
  2. No active or unresolved GI issues. This includes chronically loose stool, even if that condition is your dog's "norm" and not an indicator of illness. Chronically loose stool is not sustainable in a pack setting. If your dog has chronically loose stool, please ask your vet how changes in diet, dietary supplements (e.g. VisBiome Vet probiotic), and possibly medication can restore your dog's digestive system.
  3. No significant mobility issues. Must be independently mobile.
  4. No continence issues.
  5. Must be groomed appropriately (coat clean, unmatted and cut to an appropriate length for the season, vision unobscured, sanitary areas not overgrown and soiled, shedding coats brushed). We do not mean your dog must be professionally groomed *right* before their visit. But if your dog has not been professionally groomed recently, we do mean that you should ensure the above areas are maintained appropriately in between grooms.
  6. Spayed/neutered.
  7. Not recovering from surgery and not in advanced stages of terminal illness. Unfortunately, we are not able to provide rehab, assisted living, or hospice level care for dogs who are experiencing the after-effects of a surgical procedure or ongoing effects of a terminal illness. If you need rehab, assisted living, or hospice level care for your dog, we recommend you arrange for a caregiver who can stay with your dog in your home.

Requirements for food storage are as follows: 

  • KIBBLE/FREEZE-DRIED: We require that you pack your dog's dry food in no larger than a gallon-sized bag/container. The length of your dog's stay may require multiple bags/containers, but no single bag/container may be larger than a gallon. You may either 1) pack pre-measured meals into individual sandwich bags or 2) use gallon-sized bags to create a “bulk” supply from which we measure individual meals here. If packing pre-measured meals, an ideal eco-friendly option is Lunchskins bags. These bags are readily available at Whole Foods and on Amazon in multiple sizes. If sending a bulk supply, an ideal eco-friendly option is reusable silicone bags (the SPLF brand on Amazon has a great gallon-sized option). The above are excellent alternatives to Ziplocs (though we accept Ziplocs). We cannot accept a bag of dry dog food straight from the store shelf regardless of the length of your dog’s stay. And we cannot accept any container larger than a gallon. We charge $25 to re-pack your dog's food, if you do not send it according to these specifications.
  • CANNED: We ask that you pack an airtight lid with your dog’s cans.
  • COOKED (Farmer's Dog, Ollie, Nom Nom, Home-cooked, etc.): If you feed commercial cooked food, please pack this food along with a human-grade storage container for us to store thawed portions. If you home-cook food, home-cooked food should arrive prepared and in human grade storage containers. Depending on the length of your dog’s stay, we may need to freeze a portion of your dog’s home-cooked food. This portion should arrive already cooked and in a separate human grade container.
  • RAW: We can accommodate freeze-dried, shelf-stable versions of raw food. We also can accommodate frozen raw food that requires thawing. If your dog eats raw food that requires thawing, we require that you pack TWO GLASS airtight containers with your dog. One glass container will be in the fridge for the current day’s food. The second glass container also will be in the fridge for the next day’s food to begin thawing. The remainder of your dog’s raw food will be in our freezer. Glass is the safest, most sanitary material for storing food–particularly raw meat. If you need help finding airtight glass containers online, please let us know. We can point you to the containers we use for our dogs’ raw food.

At the beginning of your travel, your dog should be transferred directly from your care to our care (you should be the last person to care for your dog before we do). At the end of your travel, your dog should be transferred directly from our care to your care (you should be the first person to care for your dog after we do). We will not receive a dog from or deliver a dog to extended family members, friends, neighbors, or commercial caregivers. This policy ensures reliable logistics and transparent responsibilities. Of course, an emergency at our home creates an exception to this policy. In the event of an emergency at our home, we will deliver your dog to your designated emergency contact. If you cannot be home for your dog's transfer, you will need to provide us key/code access. 


All dogs who stay at our home must have a designated emergency contact in the DC metro area. Friends or family outside of the DC metro area will not be able to help you, us, or your dog in the event of an emergency at our home. Your emergency contact should be someone who could guarantee receipt of your dog in the event of an emergency at our home. If you do not have someone in the DC metro area who could serve as an emergency contact, a commercial boarding facility in the DC metro area may be used (but only if your dog has been pre-socialized at that boarding facility). While we never expect a compromise in our capacity to care for your dog, we do acknowledge there are forces beyond our control (a death in our family that calls us away from town, etc.).


Each year we can accommodate only a fraction of the demand for holiday boarding. Please plan for the possibility that we will not be able to accommodate your need for holiday care. You will be in good company!

On July 1st we will offer a limited group of clients the first opportunity to reserve. We form this group by taking into consideration longevity of boarding (how long a client has been part of our pack) and regularity of boarding (how often a client boards with us). Due to our small scale + significant demand for holiday boarding, many wonderful clients will need to wait until after this first round to see if space remains.

More info on holiday boarding will be posted here by July 1st.

REFERRAL CREDIT (beginning 2023)

For referrals made in 2023 or after: existing clients who refer a new dog to us receive $75 toward future boarding. Existing clients receive this credit after the following two conditions are met:

  1. The new dog successfully passes a socialization. AND
  2. The new dog stays with us for regular boarding within 4 months of its successful socialization.

We will notify existing clients whenever a referral credit has been earned according to the above criteria.

There is no limit to the number of referral credits an existing client may receive.


1) For dogs who have passed a socialization but have **NOT** yet stayed with us for regular boarding

We ask that your dog's first regular boarding visit occur no more than 4 months after its socialization. Boarding within 4 months of a socialization preserves the relevance and reinforces the success of that socialization. This first boarding visit must be at least two nights.

Dogs who do not board at least two nights within 4 months of a successful socialization will need to pass another socialization overnight.

2) For dogs who have passed a socialization **AND** stayed with us for regular boarding

During any 12-month stretch we ask that your dog stay with us for at least 4 nights (either in a single visit or spread across visits). We regard this as the minimum threshold for preserving your dog's comfort with our pack (and, in turn, our pack's comfort with your dog).

If a 12-month stretch occurs during which your dog does not stay with us for at least 4 nights, your dog's membership in our pack will need to be renewed. In this event, we ask that you re-complete our client information form and schedule a resocialization overnight for your dog. Following a successful resocialization, your dog will need to stay with us within 4 months of the resocialization (as described in #1 above).


Our inclement weather policy is available here.