Pet Boarding & Daycare Expo information coming soon!
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Monday Programs

Design And Construction Workshop

Rick Bacon & Nicole Mirabelli

This workshop is structured to help individuals understand the design and construction process for building new boarding kennels, pet daycare, and grooming facilities. Topics presented will include how to get organized, the responsibilities of the owner, design team, and contractor, new construction versus renovations, regulatory requirements, site selection, floor plan development, and materials selection.

Hour 1) How To Get The Ball Rolling For A Design And Construction Project

Put your dreams into action. In this session, you will learn how to organize a project from the owner’s perspective. Topics discussed will include roles and responsibilities of the project team, feasibility study, architectural components of a business plan, developing a budget, the five phases of a project, project schedules, tasks to complete, the difference in design and contract documents, differences in project delivery methods, site selection / evaluation, and deciding whether to build new or renovate. How building codes, accessibility codes, and permitting effect the design process will also be described.

Hour 2) Design Decisions And Materials Selection

Successful projects have functional floor plans, materials, and systems that are appropriate for boarding facilities. This session will explain how to select finish materials and define what is included in the construction documents. You will learn how a floor plan is created, how the “Cost Triangle” affects your material selection, and what “green architecture” means. The function and importance of construction observation by the design team is explained.

My Dog Has What? Common Diseases In Boarding

Lisa Aumiller

Join Dr. Lisa Aumiller for this two-hour course discussing some of the most common diseases you are likely to see in your facility, including those affecting the ears, eyes, skin, respiratory and GI tracts. Knowledge is the key to helping your staff recognize these problems and properly communicate with clients. The end result? You are the hero versus the culprit!

Today’s Dog Professional

Doug Duncan

You love working with dogs, and you’ve dedicated yourself to making their lives better. But are you set up to make a professional, sustainable living in the animal world? Taking care of the animals is our first job, but it’s every bit as important that you take care of yourself. Are you struggling to make ends meet? Do you get regular time off every week? When was the last time you took a vacation? And you have to take care of the business, too. Do you have a solid marketing plan and strategies for its regular implementation? Are your services, rates, and policies designed to truly meet clients’, dogs’, and your own needs?



If you’re like most daycare and boarding owners or staff, your top priority is the dogs. If your goal is to help the most animals possible, and to make a good living doing so, it’s time to get serious about what it means to be a pet care professional in today’s industry. In this inspirational talk, Doug Duncan of dog*tec will change the way you think about yourself as an animal pro and business owner—and about the profession you belong to.

How To Add Enrichment In Your Facility: Games & Activities

Teena Patel

Behavioral wellness is extremely important in the dogs that we care for, but many facilities are stumped about exactly how they can add more individual enrichment activities to already busy daily schedules. Thankfully, there are simple ways for you to work dogs one-on-one and in very small groups.

During this 2-hour seminar, Teena will provide a step-by-step guide on how to add more enrichment activities to your facility. This isn't about group play; you'll learn how to do more with individual dogs, and Teena will demonstrate and explain various activities, games, and exercises that you can use in your business. She'll also cover how to build and use your own activity kits so that the dogs you're caring for can exercise their bodies and their minds. You'll walk away with concrete, actionable ideas that can be implemented at your own facility.

How To Best Manage Dog Play Groups

Fernando Camacho

When you're trying to control a pack of playful, high energy dogs, things can get out of hand pretty quickly. If you do things the right way, however, you are much more likely to get the dogs to listen to you and keep everyone safe and well behaved. In this seminar, Fern will discuss the do's and don'ts of working with dog play groups, safety tips, and best practices to create a positive environment for both staff and dogs.

Fights, Bites And When Things Don’t Go Right

Steven Parker & Jason Parker

We all have those day, especially in this industry, when things just don’t go your way. In this seminar, you will learn how to set yourself up to minimize the commons risks or exposures you could be on the hook for. Help with reducing the potential for problems in your doggie daycare, employee injuries, sick dogs, and then how to deal with public relations matters - all to set yourself up for success!

Employee Handbook Musts

Teena Patel

Bringing new employees into your facility, and even educating existing employees can be a stressful task. But, there’s one way to make the process easier. Providing your staff members with a comprehensive employee handbook is an excellent, low-cost way to ensure everyone is on the same page in your business. In this 1-hour seminar, Teena will cover the ins and outs of creating employee handbooks that you can use over and over again. You’ll walk away inspired, armed with actionable information about policies, procedures, must-haves in your handbooks, and more.

Kennel Design, Drains & Floors: Integrating Them All For Success

Greg Taylor & Jeff Adney

Kennels are typically one of the biggest line items in a new or refurbished facility, drains are probably the most overlooked and abused feature in a building and floors are the most common complaint by owners because too often they are done poorly or incorrectly. This three-hour presentation will take a deep dive into all three of these critical areas and then discuss how to integrate them to create a facility that works.

Hour 1) Kennel Trends And Design

A lot has changed over the past 5-10 years; there are new materials, better floor seals, creative designs, and most importantly, fresh thinking on what a dog needs to reduce stress and fear. Jeff and Greg will discuss the pros and cons (including cost) of block wall and isolation panels and the different materials available for each option. Gate materials and designs will be discussed, along with their respective cost, and how to incorporate the latest research on what dogs need to reduce their stress. Other discussion points will include ways to increase capacity in a given foot print by utilizing tri-kennels, stacked runs, and double-decked runs. Real life rooms and luxury suites will also be reviewed, as these have grown in popularity.

Hour 2) Common Types Of Floors Used In Boarding And Daycare Facilities

Jeff and Greg will go over substrates and preparation, discuss what to specify, and the varying testing methods available. They will also discuss the pros and cons of different slope and draining options, as well as flooring possibilities (sealed concrete, epoxy, tiles, rubber, etc.) and how they can influence cleaning protocol and kennel design and provide “how-to” tips on making certain your flooring contractors do a professional job and don’t leave you with unanswered warranty claims down the road.

Hour 3) Why Your Kennels Need To Work With The Selected Floor And Drain Option

It is critical for flooring and drain design to be coordinated with kennel design if the entire system is to function properly and to its maximum potential, especially if side panels are utilized. They will go over the most common ways kennels seal to a floor, how to prevent cross contamination and thereby reduce disease outbreaks, and the pros and cons of different drain placements and how it impacts kennel design, as well as the type of wall coving, if any, that is used by the flooring firm.

Puppies: Prevention, Disease, And Education

Lisa Aumiller

Making a puppy's owner happy will bring you profit for the life of the pet. Learn the nuts and bolts of puppy care to take back to your facility and share with your staff, from parasite prevention to behavior modification and everything in between, this is all need-to-know information for your smallest guests!

Assessing Sociability In Dogs: He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not

Robin Bennett

A strong social drive is the best barrier against aggression. But how can you tell if a dog really likes you? In this session, which utilizes both photos and video clips, you will learn to how to distinguish between arousal, investigatory behavior, and true sociability, which will help you tailor your interactions to best suit each dog's needs -- a must for interacting with dogs in boarding or daycare!

Websites That Work

Doug Duncan

Your website is your ultimate marketing and sales tool, and it’s a shame to have it firing on anything but full cylinders. A good site doesn’t just exist—it works for you. Your website should answer client questions and make sales so you don’t have to. Imagine phone and email inquiries from dog guardians ready to pull the trigger, instead of from potential clients full of questions and wanting to be convinced you’re worth it. Looking at examples of do’s and don’ts, best and worst practices, and exciting before-and-after case studies, Doug Duncan of dog*tec will show you what makes a website work and leave you with ideas and inspiration for building or improving your own most important marketing tool.

Know Your Numbers & Make More Money

Susan Briggs

You don’t have to be a financial expert or spend hours every week looking at your numbers to make more money in your business. Just select and use the right tools regularly and you’ll find more money in your pocket every month. Get started with our Top Five list as a starting point to your financial freedom.

Best Practices For Pet Care And Safety

Dr. Courtney Campbell

To remain competitive in this market, pet professional businesses must keep their pet owners happy and this means keeping pets happy and healthy. Merck Animal Health convened leading experts who developed a consensus statement to recommend best practices for pet care and safety for pet professional businesses such as kennels, veterinary facilities, doggie daycares, dog walkers, groomers, and training facilities. Join Dr. Courtney Campbell as he shares the key components from the consensus statement that professional pet businesses should keep in mind, especially as it relates to preventing the spread of infectious disease within their facilities.

Artificial Grass 101

Ken Karmie

If you are considering artificial grass or wondering if you should be considering artificial grass, this session is a must for you. Is the use of artificial grass a luxury or an asset to provide positive financial returns? Basic and foundational information on what, where, and how to use artificial grass in pet facilities will be covered, as well as the advantages and disadvantages, and what you need to know to ensure success and what crucial things you should avoid.