I'm a dog mad former Registered Nurse, in my early 50's and currently studying for a Policy Masters. I have two rescue dogs, volunteered at a shelter in the sick bay for 2 years, and I offer a premium safety conscious dog service. Your dog is made to feel very welcome and though they always miss the owner a bit, once settled they should feel we are an extended family -
like an Aunty & fur cousins. I can cater for two board dogs, and provide other services to a few daily. My ridgey boy is very social, the other is an older girl who is frosty initially but usually warms to new dogs given graded exposure.
A half hour meet and greet (first off property then at home) is needed to judge boarder compatibility.
Should the intro of dogs and humans succeed, then restricted client numbers will make for abundant fun and quality time. Dogs who you wish to be socialized with other dogs during walks or board, will only play with one other new friend at a time, under supervision.
Puppies under 1 aren't accepted for in-house service as my older dog, despite her love of playing, finds hyper youngsters are too much. Toys are unsuited for board, my dogs are medium weight and so I'm not keen where accidental collisions may harm.
Quality check-list - 2 boarder cap, no >2 client dogs walked together cap, frail sickly dogs catered to, safe dog taxi, dogs lacking reliable recall get good runs including ball retrieving on ultra long leash, full home comforts and TLC as required.
Dogs staying over can free range in my modest beachy bungalow (an ongoing reno) and guests are not exposed to visitors just me. Homestay dogs aren't left alone for more than 2 hours daily, and when I'm absent they're rested in separate zones.
Boarders enjoy daily walks at the beach or on cycle tracks/in parks, either off lead where recall is reasonably good, or on extended leads, and are exercised solely or in pairs. They are transported to walks in a seperate compartment of my SUV.
Dogs typically overnight in the lounge in a spot of their choosing - whether on the couch or a floor bed. More rarely they'll sleep in a spacious night pen in a heated studio, if they would prefer a more private secure retreat, or if there is presence of destructiveness. Some longer stay master-minds have wangled their way to sleep on my bedroom couch.
Complementary pick up is between 10am and 1pm or you can drop off by arrangement. Boarders should depart by middayish, but can depart in the evening if daycare for that day is payed for. The day-care experience is more akin to candle-lit dinner dates than a 'lets go crazy' mosh pit. Dogs enjoy a structured routine with play, social mixing and rests.
Walks are at least half an hours duration, and possibly go much longer if the destination and day warrants a good ramble.
Transport to a range of exciting destinations is in a partitioned SUV - each dog has their own space. We experience nature on the beach or trails, with a good work out and stretch of legs off lead where possible. Dogs with poor recall who resist re-leashing may be kept on a long line that enables running. The number of guest dogs walked together is two max, and dog parks are off limits due to their inherent risks.
Pick up is midday to 2pm, drop off by 5pm.
These are small group or solo walks not pack walks, and that level of supervision is a plus not a minus. Did you know that many places, including parts of the UK, have outlawed pack walks (defined as 4 dogs or more) because of their risks, as nasty incidents occurred after pack walking became popularised. I believe this will eventually come to pass in NZ too.
Home Visits & House-sits
Visits last for 30-40 minutes. I can include play, petting, toileting, feeding, medications, and even a light ten minute on-lead stroll round the block (in the daytime) for sensory stimulation. Bookings avail. between 9am-1pm and 9pm to midnight. House sits can only run to a few days - I'll be in and out but your dog/s is pampered and never left alone for over 3 hours.
Science tells us dogs are not pack animals in the same mould of wolves, and not even direct descendants. The Genome project put this romantic framing which led to the very damaging "Alpha theory" to rest, so there's no sneaky use of chokeholds or macho theatrics used to gain dominance here! Compliance is wangled and leadership established through rewards or withholding them, but your dog will rule their own universe to the extent that they are competent and trusty.
I'm interested in managing dogs with issues (unfortunately often seen in rescues or after bad daycare or pack walk experiences) and I can consult a formally qualified behaviourist as necessary. I'm always happy to follow any prescribed program, but please discuss with me first before booking whether any special needs of your dog may fall within my capability to manage. I don't accept entire adults, or excess barkers.
In line with the MPI dog-care guidelines, no unrelated dog is transported in a shared space. A partitioned SUV is used, ensuring that dogs in transit can enjoy their own space. This avoids scuffles or worse, as there's always a potential for unpredicted triggers such as pain or sickness. Taxi not bus!
To help your beloved dog to enjoy their best time ever I would appreciate any tips about what can up my game to one of ‘silver service’ in your dogs eyes. Atop the basics of personal care for your dog, please do reveal any big do and don'ts for him or her. What games are favoured? Are you aware of any aggression subtypes? The more detail I can get the better.
Clients must be up to date with locally indicated vaxes including kennel cough for boarders, and current with 3 monthly worming and flea treatments please. Infestations are treated in boarders at added cost. Walk clients with fleas are rejected until clear.
Loyalty deals by special request*
A month of walks for 4+ days a week gets 10% discount. Book 14 overnights for 7% discount on those nights - that's in cash back because Pawshake has no automated 7% discount option at checkout.
*You need to request a discount while booking or it will not be applied.
Thankyou for reading my intro, and feel free to contact me anytime.
Rachael is a dedicated and knowledgeable dog lover, who took great care of our old dog. We are grateful our dog wasn't simply shut in a cage or left outside with no attention. Rachael gave us several updates, with photos. Our dog had a lovely little holiday. Rachael is generous with her time, and a careful pack leader with 2 dogs of her own. She provided lots of supervised play time at several parks and beach reserves near by. We would happily book Rachael again.
Rachael is a great dog sitter. Very conscientious, caring, great communication. We'll be booking again and again.
Two years volunteering in a vet hospital at a shelter Lifetime of owning hound types (GSP, greyhound mixes, ridgey, huntaway) Former Registered Nurse (UK and NZ) Aspiring vegan (not quite there yet)
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