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Frequently Asked Questions

General (8)

Here’s a list of simple but complete instructions on how to book in our kennel and what to bring with you. There is information on all other site pages also.

Here’s a short list to make things simple.

  • From the online booking page, start an account.
  • Book your pet in and send us the vaccination papers via email or upload on your login page. You will receive email confirmations and pertinent emails.
  • Here’s what most people bring: Leash, pet. Food is optional, we supply at no extra fee. We prefer to use our own bedding so we may wash it without losing it. If you insist on your own, no problem, but talk to our counter staff for details. A couple toys are fine. Try to keep them larger so they can’t roll under the gates out into the aisle.
  • Bring any medications in original packaging with dosing instructions on them.
  • Our online booking is very simple once you are signed in and especially with our mobile app. You book, modify or even cancel all from your login page. Once your pet is checked in however, you must email us for schedule changes.

This is our evaluation of ourselves and what we intended to accomplish by starting a pet boarding business. Great pet care is at the very top of our list.

That’s a great question. Location to start with I guess. At the airport and easily accessible to anyone heading south out of Edmonton.

We started our kennel in 1993 after deciding that it would be a great way to make a living from home while maintaining our lifestyle of training and breeding Labrador Retrievers. To be honest I never looked at any other kennels before I built our first one. I had the typical indoor outdoor style with dog doors. Bad idea. A lot of pets couldn’t figure out how to use the doors because they didn’t have them at home. Also very drafty and downright cold on the dogs. The next kennel was a totally indoor building and we physically moved them outdoors to exercise them. That’s the design we have now in our third building that we’ve built. The dogs are the happiest and well exercised.

I also discovered that I must invest heavily in my outdoor exercise pens with heated concrete and a way to wash them daily. I could have built a home for what I spent on my exercise pens. Any other kinds of pens are a struggle to use in the winter when it snows. The snow and ice builds up and it’s just a mess to deal with. Then in the spring everything melts and makes a disgusting mess. The ongoing smell and unsanitary conditions are not good. Think about your back yard in the spring on steroids. We wash ours every day, all year.

Here’s an interesting fact. When we started in the kennel business, there were no doggie daycares. That idea unfolded after we started. We actually took some heat for being a ‘social’ kennel back then. Boarding just wasn’t done like that…. oh well, we did and became very popular. Also, municipal regulations seemed stricter then. But, the pet industry flourished, people were getting pets, regulations changed, and these ‘doggie daycares’ started popping up all over, mostly in converted warehouse bays.

I never comment or show disdain for my competition who are simply trying to make a living also. As a matter of fact, many of them have a totally different market than us and are not in competition. A daycare feeds off a very local market I suspect and because we are located at the Edmonton International Airport, it’s not on everyone’s way to work. I get that. We do a great deal of pet boarding from not only the local Edmonton area including Leduc, but also from all over the province and Northwest Territories. People regularly drive or fly here, and then fly off for business or holidays down south or wherever. We are practically at the airport just across the highway to the east and our clients love that they can drop off their pet and their car and fly away. Or drop off while heading south.

In 1989, there were no ‘Pet Resorts’ that I know of. My uncle used to call his lake lot Club Mead so with his permission, I shared that name and became the first local pet resort around here. Now it seems a ‘Pet Resort’ is somewhat of a brand name rather than a working name, like a ‘Skidoo’ Is to a snowmobile. As a matter of fact, another business named themselves after a slogan I used to use on my website. That’s all ok. There’s much more to being in business than a name.

That’s my next point. Times have changed. Marketing has left the phone books and arrived on peoples mobile devices. That means if you’re not there, you simply don’t exist. At least that’s what some businesses think. I read everyone’s websites as they are public and they all read mine. I see what they post and offer and the marketing strategies they use. Some are openly disdainful to others and I find that offensive. We never look down on anyone or their businesses. It’s hard to make living out there and people that compare or try to lift themselves up over someone else in a hurtful manner never seem to last. And I don’t mean to us or anyone in particular. There are actually business out there who deny what they are, call them self something else and somehow want you to believe that. It’s a false narrative. They are pet boarding establishments, dog and cat care for money, the definition of a kennel. Check Wikipedia. Digital marketing is kind of cool, because like a dating app, you can be anybody online.

So, while we’ve kept up on all the digital marketing techniques of today, our business remains the same as always. Excellent pet care for ALL who stay here at the same price. Word of mouth still keeps bringing people back and great personal recommendations keep us going. Google reviews are sort of like that but they’re not the same because no one knows the person writing the review. The care of the pets is what matters. We consider feeding, medications and most other unique needs to be part of that care. That’s why we’ve never charged extra for much of anything.

Our price is very competitive. We can do that by having a strategic attitude about boarding. We stay busy. We have a great facility that we can operate efficiently without sacrificing care. I touched on not charging extra for anything. Here’s why. If we are looking after 100 pets in a day or sometimes many more, their individual needs might change. One might need a bit more attention today or that one takes a bit longer to feed because he’s picky and likes someone to stay while he eats. This one might need insulin. Whatever it is, as long as everyone is properly cared for each and every day, that’s what we set our price on as a whole with a reasonable margin.

It matters to us that we publicly show who we are. You are leaving your family member with us and must trust us.

It’s a huge leap of faith to do that.

We understand that and that’s what sets us apart.

Stu Mead

 

Yes, of course you can. There are many ways but the best is to email us at info@clubmead.com . Phone, Facebook, and texting is all good as well.

Yes, of course you can. There are many ways but the best is to email us at info@clubmead.com . Phone, Facebook, and texting is all good as well. You can log in to your portal via your smart phone app and contact us directly from there via email. We respond to every inquiry as soon as we can. All clients are encouraged to join our private Facebook group once they get an account and start using us. We post frequently on there with daily pictures and current goings on at the kennel. Most people will see their pet if they monitor it.

Yes, we try to answer all inquiries as soon as possible. There are many ways people can contact us and most are linked to our smart phones.

Yes, we try to answer all inquiries as soon as possible. There are many ways to contact us in this day and age. Facebook, Google, email, phone, text, etc, etc. We monitor them all. In the old days, our kennel phone was our link to the outside world, but no longer just that. The supervisor carries it around with her but can’t always answer on the spot if she’s with another guest for instance. You can leave a text on our kennel number, it’s a mobile phone. A text or voice mail will be answered asap.

For all our social feeds, we have all three of our family monitoring them. We always answer very soon but if whoever answers is not physically at the kennel then we sometimes must defer until the supervisor onsite can respond. That depends on the nature of the question of course.

 

Yes, we schedule time in our day for tours every day at noon without the need to schedule. You can come at other times as well but may be limited.

Yes, we schedule time in our day for tours every day at noon without the need to schedule. You can come at other times as well with the understanding that tours may be subject to or limited due to the operation of the kennel. If you want to schedule one, please contact us and we’ll make specific arrangements for you.

Yes! It is extremely important for the security of your pet that you have a person on your file that can transport your pet or make other critical decisions on your behalf should the need arise.

Yes! It is extremely important for the security of your pet that you have a person on your file that can transport your pet or make other critical decisions on your behalf should the need arise. Please make sure this person is aware they are the emergency contact so it is not a surprise if we must call.

We don’t restrict how long in advance you can book. It’s only limited by how far in advance I have my system set up for, which is a year or more.

We don’t restrict how long in advance you can book. It’s only limited by how far in advance I have my system set up for, which is a year or more. Booking more than 2 months in advance is probably not necessary if you are only worried we will be full. Typically even before Christmas or August long weekend, we only fill up less than 2 weeks ahead. You are welcome to do what you like though, because we send out a boarding reminder a few days ahead. That way even if you have forgotten about it and your plans have changed, you can still change or cancel online.

Our kennel facility is concrete and block construction. In our experience, it’s the only material that is able to be cleaned while giving us decades of use.

Our whole kennel facility is concrete and cinder block construction. The building is a metal clad structure. In our experience, concrete is the only material that is able to be consistently cleaned while giving us decades of service life. Other materials are subject to degradation over the years by chewing, rotting, etc. Also, any porous materials such as wood are subject to retaining smell and disease. The outdoor exercise pens are heated concrete as well to facilitate cleaning all year including the winter months. The warm concrete has an added benefit of keeping the dogs feet warm in the winter while outside running around.

Outdoor exercise pens must be able to be washed and cleaned. No matter what anyone says or does, the fact of life at any pet boarding facility is that pets produce a lot of waste. If you cannot clean it up properly, it builds up and becomes untenable. Gravel and dirt pens will retain every single urination in the ground and will eventually lead to smell and unsanitary conditions. We have 6000 square feet of exercise pens outside sectioned up so we can put quite a few dogs out at once and clean the inside while they run around. We scoop the poop after each group and pressure wash the whole thing into a single drain every day. Because it is heated concrete, we wash it EVERY day, even when it’s 30 degrees below zero.

Dog Boarding (5)

Yes, we accept all breeds. Our facility is designed specifically to handle dogs without having to individually leash them. That allows us to safely interact with most without having to manhandle or control them in close quarters. It also allows us to concentrate on it being a positive experience for the pets as we can get as interactive as they like, not what we insist. Also, because most dogs that come here are peoples pets, there are very few who are misbehaved or unsafe towards others or our staff. Having said that, we let them interact in small groups if possible while maintaining privacy for others for various reasons. We don’t let un-neutered males interact directly with others for instance. Safety and having fun for all is what we strive to do!

Yes, familiar toys, treats and a machine washable blanket are welcome, although we do prefer to provide bedding for your pet. We are unable to accept bedding that cannot be laundered.

Yes, we can accommodate many special care instructions. We do have limitations on some special care instructions as we are not a vet clinic. Please contact us prior to booking to ensure we can handle your specific request.

We accept all pets. If they can socialize, then we let them play with their group of friends in our outdoor pens. If they are intact then we exercise them separately. We have a common sense approach with your pets and their well being is first and foremost. Because of our robust and proper facility, we are well equipped to handle all pets no matter what for the most part. It’s hardly worth mentioning but we’ve turned away probably less than 10 dogs in almost 30 years and they were all unsafe for any human to be around them. Virtually all of the tens of thousands of pets that have stayed with us over the years are someones loving pet and very easy for us to deal with and take care of.

Yes we can keep up to three pets from the same family together. Here are the requirements:

  • They get along with each other.
  • They must be able to be fed together in the same run with minimal separation.
  • They must not be of drastically different sizes. Your very small dog may be intimidated by being in a large dog area of our building. If they fight with each other for any reason, it’s not fair for your small dog.
  • Normally we keep un-neutered males separate from all others. That’s open to discussion on a case by case basis whether we house them with your other pet.

Cat Boarding (4)

Yes, familiar toys, treats and a machine washable blanket are welcome, although we do prefer to provide bedding for your pet. We are unable to accept bedding that cannot be laundered.

Yes, we can accommodate many special care instructions. We do have limitations on some special care instructions as we are not a vet clinic. Please contact us prior to booking to ensure we can handle your specific request.

We accept all pets. If they can socialize, then we let them play with their group of friends in our outdoor pens. If they are intact then we exercise them separately. We have a common sense approach with your pets and their well being is first and foremost. Because of our robust and proper facility, we are well equipped to handle all pets no matter what for the most part. It’s hardly worth mentioning but we’ve turned away probably less than 10 dogs in almost 30 years and they were all unsafe for any human to be around them. Virtually all of the tens of thousands of pets that have stayed with us over the years are someones loving pet and very easy for us to deal with and take care of.

Yes we can keep up to three pets from the same family together. Here are the requirements:

  • They get along with each other.
  • They must be able to be fed together in the same run with minimal separation.
  • They must not be of drastically different sizes. Your very small dog may be intimidated by being in a large dog area of our building. If they fight with each other for any reason, it’s not fair for your small dog.
  • Normally we keep un-neutered males separate from all others. That’s open to discussion on a case by case basis whether we house them with your other pet.

Feeding (2)

Yes, we have ample fridge and freezer space to accommodate raw diets. We are also a Mountain Dog Food retailer.

Yes, everything is included. Probably half of our guests bring their own too and that’s fine. Whatever works for you is good with us. We don’t use the cheapest junk out there but rather look for a decent dry kibble that is agreeable to most pets and generally will stay firm on so they can transition easily. We’ve used Iams, Pedigree, Kirkland and others through the years. The formula changes on them every now and then and sometimes forces us to change because we actually see a difference in the pets.

We used a product called Masterfeeds Sportsman for probably 15 years. It was produced locally in Barrhead, Alberta I believe. It was the best overall dogfood on the market in our opinion. One day when I went to pick up my 4 pallets at the plant, they informed me it was now made somewhere else out east. We fed 3 bags out of that 100 bag order and had to return the rest. It literally was not the same food even though the bag was the same. The dogs wouldn’t even eat it.

Medications (1)

Yes, we will follow your instruction of administering most kinds of medications including insulin. Please provide the medication in original labelled bottles and in the case of injections, we require one needle per injection.

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Closed on these dates 2020:

  • Sunday, Feb 16

  • Saturday, April 11

  • Sunday, April 12

  • Sunday, May 17

  • Saturday, August 1

  • Sunday, Aug 2

  • Sunday, Sep 6

  • Sunday, Oct 11

  • Dec 24-25-26-31

  • Jan 1-2, 2021

    Only the office is closed and our system will not allow bookings to start or end on these dates. The kennel is fully operational.