“Dog hotel a ‘luxury resort experience’ that offers only the best amenities”

National Post | February 21, 2015

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Elevated orthopedic beds, filtered water, a chemical-free pool, aromatherapy, spa treatments and the option of a $200-a-night poolside suite, welcome to Toronto’s first high-tech dog hotel.

The “canine luxury resort experience” located a few minutes from Toronto’s Pearson airport is set to open for overnight, four-legged guests and daycare in the first week of March, says owner Susan Rupert.

“We’ve had a few clients say that they would like to stay there themselves,” said Ms. Rupert.

The Park9 resort is a 14,000-square-foot facility with an indoor and outdoor playground and a separate wing for cats. There are no crates — owners can choose between having their pooch sleep on a bed in a shared “lounge” or in a private room.

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It will offer private play sessions, bathing and grooming, and even “one-on-one cuddle time” according to the website. The “mini-bar” options include dog chews, ice cream and special holiday meals.

Owners who are enjoying their own room service will be able to give their dog a treat through a computer-controlled system.

“It’s like Skype for dogs. Basically there’s a screen inside the room that you can sign into and video-chat with your dog personally,” said Ms. Rupert. “You can have a full conversation with your dog; you can dispense a treat for them while you’re travelling, and you can also dispense aromatherapy.”

Along with video technology, the building incorporates natural sunlight, hospital-grade ventilation systems and artificial grass.

Vancouver offers small “dog hotel” style kennels, but Ms. Rupert said Park9 will be Canada’s largest and the first with a pool.

In the U.S., Chicago and Los Angeles offer similar pooch luxury, according to Ms. Rupert, who has operated a dog fitness and spa centre, UrbanDog, in Toronto since 2003.

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Unlike leaving your pet at the veterinarian’s or with a friend, the Park9 staff of 25 will monitor the kennel 24 hours a day.

Prices start at $65 a night and climb to $200-a-night luxury suites. Additional services like one-on-one fetch could add up quickly for a pampered pet, costing $20 per half-hour session, while spa treatments like a shampoo start at $35. Pet owners bring their dog’s own food.

Ms. Rupert said she already has reservations booked for the most expensive suites, which include a comfy dog bed, a flat screen TV, a private webcam and treat dispenser.

Lonesome owners can check on their pets from afar by tapping into the resort’s webcam network.

“People can sign in and watch and take pictures with it,” said Ms. Rupert. “It’s peace of mind, even for people during the day. When you’re travelling it makes you feel better when you miss them and you can see they’re having fun and you don’t feel so guilty.”

National Post

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