By Justine Griffin
From: Sun Sentinel
Photo: The Pompano Pet Lodge Assistant Manager Andrea Howell plays with Remy, a Rhodegian Ridgeback, as the other dogs wait their turn to play. (Taimy Alvarez, Sun Sentinel / August 15, 2012)
Pet boarding facilities in South Florida are growing, thanks to those who pamper their pets like some parents do their kids.
Business is steady enough at the Pompano Pet Lodge to move ahead with expansion plans, said owner John Glorieux, who plans to open a state-of-the-art facility in the former location of the Gold Coast Roller Rink on Federal Highway in Fort Lauderdale. The nearly $4 million pet boarding, grooming and day care center is set to open in October.
“There hasn’t been much of a recession in our kind of business,” Glorieux said. “Even through tougher times, people take care of their dogs.”
Pet services like grooming, temporary boarding and day care are booming, even while some pet owners are still struggling through the sluggish economy, said Bob Vetere, the president of the American Pet Products Association. Owners are expected to spend more than $52 billion on their pets this year, according to the APPA, a figure that’s up 3.7 percent from last year.
More than $4 billion of that will be spent on boarding and grooming services alone, according to the APPA.
“Boarding services have rebounded more quickly than other areas,” Vetere said. “People are still watching what and where they spend, but not when it comes to their animals.”
Pet boarding and day care services stay busy in more metropolitan areas where people typically live more active lifestyles, he added.
The Country Inn Pet Resort in Davie is also expanding this year by adding an additional 7,500 square feet to their 12,500-square-foot animal hospital, day care and boarding center off Flamingo Road, said owner Monica Silva.
About 10 more dog suites will be added to the 8-acre facility to offer more space for boarding, she said.
“We want to create an area for dogs with special needs, whether they are older or need more attention,” Silva said. “This way we can give them their own private area.”
Silva said about 1,500 pets come through her center in Davie in a month’s time. Through the summer, pets are often on a waiting list after suites completely book up.
“People are still traveling, especially in the summer,” she said. “And they want to make sure their pets are being cared for.”
Camp Canine added a third location in Hollywood in 2010. The pet boarding, grooming and day care facility has two other locations in Fort Lauderdale and Boca Raton.
Glorieux’s Lauderdale Pet Lodge will cater to pet owners on their way out of town since its location is convenient to Port Everglades and the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, he said. The 14-building, 140-pet capacity facility is just minutes away from interstates 95 and 595. His Pompano Beach location will remain open, too.
Sandra Lewis, from Coconut Creek, takes her young yellow Labrador, Tanner, to day care at the Pompano Pet Lodge three days a week.
“He’s a very hyper dog and comes home pooped,” she said. “He gets to swim in a pool all day. Why wouldn’t he love it there.”
Read more: Sun Sentinel