Demand for doggy daycare soars in Greater Manchester as workers return to the office

One dog business says they need to expand into a second centre to cope with demand.

A massive increase in demand for ‘doggy daycare’ places is being caused by people returning to workplaces after prolonged periods of home working.

That is the message from one dog care business owner planning to expand into new premises to take care of more ‘lockdown puppies’ suffering from separation anxiety as their owners return to more traditional working patterns.

Dotty Doolittles, who currently operate a small breed day care centre in Bury New Road, Whitefield, have applied to Bury Council to change the use of new premises on Whitelegge Street, Bury, into a second centre.

Around 3.2 million households in the UK acquired a pet since the start of the pandemic, research by the Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association released in March 2021 suggested.

They said almost two thirds (59%) of new owners are aged 16-34. Dotty Doolittles business owner, Amanda Burke, gave the background to the planning submission in documents published this week by Bury Council.

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She said: “Places are in high demand with one in four households now having a dog due to lockdowns. There has been a drastic increase in the amount of dogs suffering with separation anxiety and not being used to being left alone for long periods of time.

“Doggy day care ensures that the dog feels more at ease and stress free being with human contact and this keeps the dogs well socialised with others. Many owners do not like leaving their dogs alone while they go out or are working.

“Due to such high demand of dog places we no longer have enough room and we are constantly turning away custom. This is why we need to expand our business the new doggy daycare centre will be for small breeds only and will provide us with much more space so we can provide the best care with a safe environment with constant supervision where owners can leave their dogs during the day and where they will be mentally and physically stimulated through structured play, exercise and rest.”

If approved, the centre will be open from 8am to 6pm on weekdays and will be closed at weekends.