Cage Free, Sleepover Style Dog Boarding


What is cage free and why should it be your preferred boarding option? Read on for a detailed account of the benefits of the new and fast-growing boarding concept and find out if it is a right fit for your dog!


As the name implies, the idea behind cage free boarding is the boarding of dogs in a place where they are free to roam and not confined to cages or solitary enclosures. This concept of boarding is gaining popularity and is being implemented by an increasing number of dog boarding facilities. This new idea offers advantages over traditional enclosure or caged boarding.


With cage free boarding, dogs are in company of others. Dogs are social animals and being in a group is as important as their food and water. Therefore, boarding your dog in a cage free environment gives him the opportunity to mingle with others and improve social skills and a heightened ability to read the body language of other dogs. Improving such social skills is important to have a confident, stable and mentally healthy dog.
Dog with food
LOW STRESS & LOW ANXIETY Dogs thrive on well-defined routines and regardless of best intentions, those routines will be disrupted by any sort of boarding. Cage-less or cage free boarding is a low stress, low anxiety boarding situation that most closely matches their normal ability to roam around your home. Like humans, when dogs are overly anxious, their appetite is greatly reduced and they don’t eat. The lower stress environment of a cage free boarding facility will greatly reduce the time it takes before a dog’s appetite will come back. Additionally, many dogs are rescues (high five if your dog is a rescue!) and a very traumatic period of their life may have been spent in a shelter and being a confined or kennel environment can remind them of that situation.


What do dogs do when they are in the company of other dogs? They play!! This is another big advantage of cage free dog boarding. Exercise doesn't have to be a physical activity; brain games and brain stimulation are incredibly important as well! When dogs exercise through play they vent out their stored energy and exercise their mind and prevents them from feeling restless and anxious. If they don't have an outlet for this behavior and energy, it can manifest itself in destructive behavior. Boarding your dog in a cage free set up is like sending your dog to puppy sleepover!
Dog behind chain link fence
YOUR DOG WILL MISS YOU LESS Although this may cause your heart to miss a beat, in reality it is a good thing! In a cage free boarding set up, your dog will have so many other fur-riends and activities around that he will not have the time to miss you as much! Unlike us, dogs live very much in the moment and are not stuck in the past nor ponder about the future.


Reputable cage free boarding establishments go to great lengths to ensure the safest environment possible with a behavior assessment to ensure that the dog will mesh with the group. In most cases, dogs are supervised round the clock by professionals in the field. These professionals will not only care for your dog but will be very happy to guide you towards potential behavioral improvements you can work on with your dog.
Owner petting dog cage free boarding
IT BENEFITS YOU AS WELL The end result of the above factors combined is that your dog will have an absolutely great time while boarding at a cage free facility. This in turn will make you feel more at ease while you are away. You feel less guilty of leaving your dog behind because you know that he is enjoying himself. This allows you to disconnect and make the most out of your vacation knowing that on your return you will find a happy and balanced dog!


The cage free set up puts some restrictions on which dogs can participate. In order for the set up to run smoothly, dogs need to be socially trained and able to function harmoniously within a group structure. Dogs that are not well socialized will disrupt the entire group and destabilize the cage free setup. Socializing your dog from a very young age is extremely important to avoid such problems in the future. Reputable cage free boarding facilities are very selective about the dogs that they select because they need to cultivate a harmonious group environment. If you determine that your dog is not a good candidate for cage free boarding today, he or she may just fine in a few months after they are more mature or more socialized.
Dogs socializing in cage free boarding facility
ANTI-SOCIAL DOGS & CAGE FREE BOARDING Although dogs that are not well socialized do not function well within a group structure, there is still hope for them in cage free boarding. Cage free home boarding options for individual dogs are available. Dogs in cage free home boarding set up will still have a good time and be well cared for. The only lacking benefits are those of being in a group. None the less, such a workaround will still allow you to avoid placing your dog in a traditional caged set up while you are away and is a great option for dogs that aren’t well socialized or don’t thrive in a group environment.
Cage free boarding dog playing


Cage free boarding is the modern way of boarding that is gaining more and more traction. Dogs need to meet certain sociability requirements to be good candidates for cage free boarding. Some dogs won’t be a great fit for cage free boarding and that is absolutely fine. Just because your dog doesn’t thrive in this environment doesn’t mean that you are a bad pet parent or even that they are a bad dog. Every dog’s personality, just like human personalities, are completely different. Cage free home boarding is a very popular alternative for less social dogs that cannot be within a group and whose owners still wish to avoid traditional cage or enclosure boarding. If you are interested in cage free boarding at Barx Parx, we do require at behavior assessment, three visits to the play park, and at least a half day of trial daycare so we can ensure that our flavor of cage free boarding is the best fit for your dog. Having plenty of exposure to our environment before they are left for an extended period of time will ensure that we are setting them up for a successful stay. Remember that Standard and Plus members receive discounts on ALL Barx Parx services, including boarding!   Have a topic that you would like us to cover in our blog? We have access to veterinarians, trainers and industry experts to get information on topics that are important to you and your dog. If you have an idea for a blog, send us an email at and we will consider your submission for a future article.

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