Big Dog Little Dog Daycare & Boarding owner Carly Lenoir plays with dogs in her charge at her new business at 32700 Pacific Highway S., Suite 4, Federal Way. JESSICA KELLER, the Mirror

Federal Way’s Big Dog Little Dog offers daycare, boarding services with all the comforts of home

When Carly Lenoir was planning to move her dog day care and boarding business out of her home and into a storefront, she contemplated every detail of her facility’s layout.

Raised in Federal Way, Lenoir said she wants pet owners who use her services to know their dogs are in the safest, most comfortable setting possible while they are away at work or on vacation.

Big Dog Little Dog Daycare & Boarding, 32700 Pacific Highway S., Suite 4, in Federal Way, has been open for a little more than a week, and Lenoir is pleased with her efforts.

From the relaxing blue walls, to the gated partitions in the main room, to the climate-controlled environment, to the communal beds and toys, Lenoir said everything about her business was crafted with dogs in mind.

“I’m trying to create more of a safe home-away-from-home feeling,” she said.

Lenoir has plenty of experience taking care of dogs in her home. She had run Carly Sits 4 Dogs out of her home for four years before opting to help fill a need for dog daycare services in Federal Way with her own storefront. She said she took her home into consideration when designing Big Dog Little Dog.

“My style of trying to make it as home-like as possible is the best advantage I can offer because it’s as familiar as possible,” Lenoir said.

While Lenoir describes herself as always having been a dog person — she and her family have three at home — she said she has learned a great deal about caring for dogs and their particular needs, including nutrition and socialization, while working for different pet companies for a number of years before opening her own business.

“It is so different having dogs in a big group,” she said.

Lenoir currently serves about five dogs a day on average, but hopes to accommodate as many as 15 at some point. Of the pooches in her care, most are small and medium sized, but she has a few big dogs, as well.

“I keep it really low key in here,” Lenoir said.

Lenoir said she goes through a careful screening process before taking on any new charges. First, the dogs must be up-to-date on vaccinations for rabies, distemper, parvo and kennel cough. The dogs then must go through a meet-and-greet process to determine how they interact with the other dogs in her care and how they adjust to being in a new environment and away from their owners.

“I rarely will let a dog come into the group until I’ve had a chance to bond with it for a moment,” she said.

Lenoir said outdoor time, including walking and bathroom breaks, are built into the daily schedule. Dogs who are boarded also receive 24-hour supervision. She said if a dog is being boarded, someone will stay at the business with them overnight while she takes the daytime hours.

For owners using daycare services, Big Dog Little Dog is open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. Lenoir said a big advantage to her location is that she is next to a grooming business, Bath, Brush & Beyond Grooming Salon, which is also convenient for pet owners.

For more information about Big Dog Little Dog Daycare and Boarding and fees, call 253-797-3142 or visit or go to bigdoglittledogfw on Facebook.

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