More and more people are going to greater lengths to take special care of their pets. But how far would you go to make sure your pet was pampered?
Sioux Falls has several businesses centered on taking care of your furry friend. Including some that offer services far beyond kennels and grooming.
We take a closer look at places going the extra mile to make sure your animal feels like a member of the family.
Many people buy special beds, toys or even clothes for their four legged friends. But how far would you go to pamper your pet?
Mini Critters in Sioux Falls, and Top Dog Resort in Harrisburg both offer very special treatments for pets. One of the most popular services is Doggy Daycare.
"I see it just as a children's daycare. You know, mom and dad are gone all day. It gives your little guy or girl something to do during the day, instead of just sitting at home by themselves," Lisa Dougherty, owner of Mini Critters said.
"Dogs have certain doggy language. Here they learn what the doggy language is. They also learn how to read people," Deb Heine, owner of Top Dog Resort said.
Both locations offer indoor and outdoor play areas, allowing pets to exercise and socialize; something owners say makes a world of difference.
"It gives our dog an opportunity to play and interact with other dogs. And to get some energy burned off for when we pick her up and take her home after work," Mini Critters Daycare customer, Leah Anderson said.
And these places go out of their way to make sure your dog is thoroughly taken care of. At Top Dog they experimented with over 50 flavors to find just the right snacks for their guests.
"Right now we're doing a bacon and cheese flavor. Or since it's Fall and we're right across the street from the apple orchard, we will do an apple cinnamon flavor," Heine said.
"I know there's a few that the dog is their child, because they don't have kids," Top Dog employee, Jordan Fuerstenberg said.
Not only does every dog here at the Top Dog Resort get their own private suite, but they also get a special treat at bed time. Their own personalized story.
"Well we take a book like 'Clifford the Big Red Dog' or 'Pokey Little Puppy' and then we insert the family members name into the story. And we do this one of a couple different reasons, one it calms the dogs down at night. The second reason we do it is most people who have a pet have raised little kids, or children. And what they do is read bed time stories to their kids. That by itself is a signal to the dog to settle down," Heine said.
Mini Critters also offers special treatments, like one-on-one grooming time with each dog. They even offer guests the chance to celebrate their pups with birthday parties; complete with hats, balloons and dog-approved ice cream.
"Peanut Parfait, Biscuits and Cream, Mint Bone Bone, Brownie Delight, and then we also have according to each season a flavor of the month. And this month it's pumpkin swirl," Dougherty said, "It's both for children and for dogs. We've had children that have actually rented the space just for their birthday parties and so they can bring their pets with them and not just their own. And then we also have the dogs that will rent them so they can bring their pals. And they have frozen yogurt, ice cream, cookies. Anything that they want."
Though some may think things like homemade snacks and bedtime stories seem like a little much for an animal, for people at Top Dog and Mini Critters, it brings them joy to treat pets with a little more TLC.
"They're like family members. That's becoming more and more. And we cater to that family member and we want this to be their vacation away from home when they stay," Heine said.
"I see my dogs as children. I love them just as much as my own kids. And I think it's important that there's services out there for people to have that," Dougherty said.
You can find more information on Top Dog Resort's services at their website: TopDogResort.us.
For more on Mini Critters in Sioux Falls, their website is: MiniCritters.com.