WHY I DO THIS
I share a special connection with dogs that allows me to bridge barriers to communication. When I talk, dogs listen, and vise-versa. It is what I have learned from listening to dogs that has led me to this profession, and conveniently, its pretty simple: Dogs are bored.
Just like people, dogs need an outlet, something interesting to do and a way to express themselves on their terms. Dogs want to know and experience freedom. They want to run, outside, as fast as they can, and sniff stinky stuff with their other dog buddies. They want to trudge through mud puddles in the rain, and roll in the dirt because they can. While all dogs are different, they all want to explore the world, and feel that they are free when they do. The confidence that grows from this freedom can help them to live happier, healthier lives with their human companions. I provide and stimulate a monitored environment that encourages dogs to have safe adventurous fun with other dogs, or just me. All the while, keeping the health and safety of your furry friends, and those of others, as my highest priority.
HOW IT ALL STARTED
I have always been fascinated with the human ability to develop trust-built, meaningful relationships with other species, especially dogs, which of course have been bred specifically to interact more easily with humans (how convenient). I have lived with and known a variety of animals throughout my life, and with their help have experimented with and explored our shared capacity for interaction. There is not much that I find more rewarding than communicating with animals.
After college I started hiking for exercise and recreation and found quickly that hiking without dogs was pretty boring. In fact, having a dog or more with me kept me hiking farther, longer, and more adventurously. If I was going to the park, I was taking a dog, and we were going on an adventure. To some, it may sound a little backwards, but my dog-centric career began with dogs walking and teaching me about them, myself, and about exploring the outdoors. Dogs are wonderful creatures who I have learned tremendously from. They have been helping and teaching me since I was a child, and I see it as my duty to help and teach them in return.
WHERE WE HIKE
Eastbay Regional Parks. Favorites include:
Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve (great for picnics)
Grass Valley / Bort Meadow (loc.
Chabot Park; vast, mellow, secluded)
Redwood Regional Park (many varied hiking options)
Joaquin Miller Park (on-leash only, good training grounds though)
Other Fun spots:
Mountain View Cemetery (pleasant training area, nice views)
Diamond Canyon / Sausal Creek (fun creek, mellow, good for 1-3 dogs)
Montclair Village (good for socialization and very dog friendly)
Foxtails (during spring/summer its always good to check your dog during and after hiking. Problem spots: between toes, inside mouth, ears, nose, and eyes. Foxtails can become embedded anywhere on the body, so watch out!)
Ticks (get a
These are great. Even better though is catching them before they latch on, so check yourself and your dogs)
Mountain Lions (still never seen one. I would like to, but not while walking a pack of dogs..)
Deer (they can kick pretty hard; also, antlers = weapons)
Cows (many view dogs as a threat; after all, they are predators)
Equestrians (a scared horse can do a lot of damage)
Injury (such as sprains, fractures, etc.)
Fights (without language, sometimes dogs try to settle disputes with violence)
Falling Trees (never seen it happen, but I have seen the aftermath)
Mushrooms (unless you actually know what you are doing, do not eat them)
Poison Oak (itchy)