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First look inside Scotland’s largest doggy daycare where pooches play with pals

A new doggy indoor daycare and soft play zone has just opened its doors to furry visitors and is now Scotland’s largest center of its kind – and one of the biggest in the whole of the UK.

Paw Haus, located in Polbeth, Livingston, takes dog daycare to a whole new level with its vast premises, cleverly divided into areas.

There is a secure soft play zone – where the ball pit is doggies’ absolute favorite – a small shopping stall with locally-produced goods for dogs, and a home-like area for pooches to relax. There is also a cafe with drinks and snacks for dog parents to stretch their legs while their dogs enjoy themselves.

Edinburgh Live went to Paw Haus to see how it is doing after it has recently opened and to check how happy its four-legged visitors are – and there’s no doubt, the centre’s Westie Wednesday event was a success.



Ewan Hunter, the co-founder of Paw Haus.

Ewan Hunter, the co-founder of Paw Haus who had a business and IT background, said: “We’ve opened Paw Haus because we’ve recognized that there are a lot of people who need support with their dogs.

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“Especially after the lockdown, people need to have a place where they know their dogs can come to re-socialise, where they can be looked after at a daycare center or enjoy Scotland’s largest indoor play zone.”

Ewan explained that dogs are much more like we are when it comes to passing their time, and as people often get bored of doing the same thing over and over again, dogs also get bored of walking the same routes or playing the same games. He said: “Like humans, the dogs need the right sort of stimulation, they need changes in the environment. They need a chance to socialize and play.

“And with evenings like today, when we have our Westie Wednesday event, both people and their dogs can get together with like-minded people and have a great time.”

Apart from play – which is a significant part of dogs’ development and socializing process – training is a vital and often overlooked aspect of owning a pet.

To promote training as an essential part of healthy dog ​​ownership, Paw Haus employs an experienced dog trainer, Michael Evans of Blaze Dog Training Academy, who has been observing those animals for the majority of his life.

The veteran with over 30 years of experience in both the UK Army and UK Police Force, Michael said: “Like anything you bring into life when you bring a child into the world, you guide that child in the right direction, giving them laws and boundaries, making sure they don’t have any bad unwanted behaviors because you want that child to thrive.

“Unfortunately, over the past two years, because of the current pandemic, a lot of people haven’t trained their dogs, and what we’ve been presented with at the moment is a lot of untrained dogs, and it comes down to time and effort of the dog owners.”

As the head of training at Paw Haus, Michael urges people to start investing their time and effort into training their dogs and ensures that we get a better pet when treating dogs not like fellow humans but like dogs.



Paw Haus sells locally produced goods for dogs.
Paw Haus sells locally produced goods for dogs.

Being open for less than a month, Paw Haus already has several loyal customers. Carol Clarkson, for example, told Edinburgh Live how her adorable westie already remembered the way to Paw Haus and now starts wiggling his tail long before the familiar building becomes visible.

Carol said: “We’ve been to several daycare places, but I love that Paw Haus is under the roof and has an option to drop in just for half an hour, for example.”

Having recently moved to the area, Carol added that Paw Haus offers a great socializing opportunity for the dog parents. She said: “I can just sit here talking to other humans while my dog ​​is out playing. While on a walk, he wants to play with other dogs, but everyone is on their way.”

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