Dog Boarding

I offer specialized, very small-scale dog boarding in my home in Florence, MA. I take a maximum of three to five guest dogs, so every dog who stays here gets lots of personal attention, playing, petting, and snuggling.

Please note: I only accept new boarding clients who have taken a class with me or Kelley Bollen at Animal Alliances.

My primary goals are to make sure all dogs who stay here feel safe and comfortable, that they get as much mental stimulation, physical exercise, and personal attention as they need, and that they practice good household manners.

Visiting dogs are fully integrated into my household, and get to spend their days hanging out with me indoors and outdoors, playing in my fenced yard, and going for long walks in the woods and fields near my house. On walks I use a 30-foot long line to give dogs freedom to explore and sniff on walks while keeping them safe. If you would like your dog to have off-leash walks, I can accommodate that as well.

I have a large fenced yard for the dogs to run and play in with several pieces of full-sized agility equipment for dogs to explore and build their confidence on. Each day includes plenty of playtime in the yard.

For dogs who need extra mental stimulation, I have a variety of food-dispensing puzzle toys to help keep them entertained. Most dogs really enjoy figuring out how to use these, and end up eating some or all of their meals out of them. Any food they don’t puzzle out of the toys is fed to the dogs when they’re done playing with the food toys.

I practice good household manners with all dogs who stay in my home: greeting people politely (not jumping up), sitting and waiting before going through doors, coming when called, and other “household manners” behaviors during the course of daily life here. If you have other household rules, I am happy to respect and reinforce them as well. If your dog doesn’t yet know these rules, no problem! I will teach them using gentle, force-free, positive reinforcement techniques. My clients report that the good manners their dogs learn here stick with them when they go back home.

Here is Emma, a 12-week-old puppy, spending a day at Stay Positive:

Watch a video of a group of boarding dogs waiting to go out the door into the yard:

At night and when I am away from the house, the dogs stay in my guest room, either in our roomy crates (if they are comfortable and happy in crates) or loose in the guest room, where they can snooze on the guest bed and look out the window. Dogs who are not allowed on furniture are left in my kitchen, with a variety of comfortable dog beds to lie on.  When left alone, dogs are given puzzle toys, stuffed Kongs, or safe chew items to work on.

I post daily photos of all of the dogs on the Stay Positive Facebook page so that you can keep up to date on how your dog is doing during his or her stay.

I have one dog of my own and two cats, so I only take dogs who can tolerate the presence of other dogs and who will not try to harm the cats. If your dog has never met a cat, don’t worry! Many of our dog guests have never encountered a cat before visiting here. I do slow introductions to help the dogs learn to stay calm around the cats.

Please note: I only accept new boarding clients who have taken a class with me or Kelley Bollen at Animal Alliances.

If you’re interested in seeing if boarding at Stay Positive would be a good fit for your dog, contact me at to schedule a time for you and your dog to come over and get to know me and my home.