The Importance of Separating Dogs by Size: Why One Size Does Not Fit All

Yesterday I had another story of a dog dying at a pet care facility come across my feed. In this case, a larger dog killed a small dog. Unfortunately, it’s one I’ve heard many times before. A quick google search on deaths at dog daycare brings up a long list of new stories. While I don’t know all the details on these, and it’s a risk for any dog care facility, a large majority of these can be prevented. The first step, separating play groups based on size. 

While we operate a day school training at Dogma, and not a free play daycare, we do manage groups of dogs. Our Dogma Difference is our commitment to keeping the dog’s safety a priority and ensuring the well-being of each dog in our care. Dog day school can be a great way to provide your pup with training, socialization, exercise, and mental stimulation. However, not all dogs are the same, and it's important to take into account their size when they are going into group. In this blog post, we'll explore the importance of separating dogs based on size and why one size does not fit all. 

Why Size Matters: 

Safety: When dogs of different sizes are grouped together, there is an increased risk of injury. Larger dogs may accidentally hurt smaller dogs during play or any other interactions, leading to injuries, or even death. 

Play Styles: Different size dogs tend to have different play styles. Small dogs may be intimidated by larger dogs and prefer to play with dogs of a similar size. On the other hand, larger dogs may accidentally overpower smaller dogs during play, leading to potential conflict. 

Benefits of Separating Dogs by Size: 

Safety: Separating dogs by size reduces the risk of injuries during play and other interactions. Smaller dogs are less likely to be accidentally injured by larger dogs, and team members can then better manage playtime and other activities. 

Better Socialization: Dogs are more likely to have positive socialization experiences when they're grouped with dogs of a similar size. These positive interactions can help build their confidence and improve their social skills. 

More Personalized Care: Team members can provide more personalized care to dogs when they're separated by size. This care can include individualized playtime, training, and other activities tailored to each dog's needs and abilities. 


Choosing a dog facility that separates dogs by size is important for the safety and well-being of your dog. Separating dogs by size can help reduce the risk of injuries, improve socialization experiences, and provide more personalized care. Whenever dogs are put into groups, your dog's size should be considered to ensure they have a safe and positive experience.  

This is something we never compromise at Dogma. We understand that socialization with various dogs is important, but that it can and should be done safely. We have specially selected mentor dogs that interact with our puppies and young dogs in short, supervised sessions with our certified trainers. This allows appropriate interactions with dogs of all sizes and ensures it is done in a safe manner that minimizes risk. This is something we’ve done since day one as part of the Dogma Difference. 

Our hearts break for all involved whenever we hear about a small dog being killed by a larger dog at a facility. It’s a risk whenever there are groups of dogs.  However, when safety is a priority, and by recognizing that one size does not fit all, we can greatly reduce the risk of something like this happening again.