“Dog crazy” since childhood, I have been professionally involved with dogs since about 1980. Born and raised primarily in Switzerland, I grew up in a culture where dogs were very much a part of everyday life. They slept under tables in restaurants, rode politely on buses and trams and kept their owners company on shopping excursions. These dogs were rarely troublesome and seemed to thrive on the stimulation, socialization and direction they received.
I’ve always believed that dogs were not meant to spend hour after hour, day after day, with no sense of purpose or social life and that it was acutely painful and stressful for them to do so. Ideally, they should be well exercised, have clarity around what’s expected of them and enjoy plenty of socialization with both people and others of their own kind. They seem to thrive best with a handler they can attach to and come to rely on.
This belief has shaped both my training philosophy and the way in which I believe that dogs should be cared for in a boarding and daycare situation. It is, in the hopes that I can provide such an experience for the dogs I work with, why I keep The Grinning Dog small and accept new clients on a limited basis.
"Alison and her staff provided exceptional care to not only my dog but also to me..." A. B.
"The best. Alison and her staff are terrific. My dog, Rem, hadn't spent any time boarded before we got here and he loved it there. I don't know how the dogs are all so calm, but they are. I'm lucky this is near by me. " Betsy N.
"We miss him, but we never worry about him when he's there. Wonderfully competent crew. Beautiful surroundings." Bruce K.