We only use scientifically proven, reward based, force free methods when walking or caring for your pet. That basically means your pet will get rewarded for everything he or she does correctly when they are in our care. We do not ever punish bad behavior, but will do our best to positively show your pet a better way to do things. For example, a dog who is still learning to potty outside will get tons of treats and praise for doing its business outside, but will never be scolded by us if we have to clean an accident inside. Scolding a dog for accidents will teach the dog that it is bad to potty anywhere, which will sometimes cause them to hide to go potty. On the flip side, getting treats and praise for doing #1 and #2 outside makes it fun and lets the pup know exactly where you want "the job" to be done.
We offer "after hours" dog walking and pet sitting by trained people who will love your pet as much as you do. We give dog owners, who work nights, holidays, and/or abnormal schedules, the opportunity to have their pets cared for in the comfort of their own home and taken for fun, play-filled walks at times when pet care is normally unavailable.
Andi is a Certified Professional Pet Sitter through Pet Sitters International. After working nights for several years as a First Responder and parenting a dog who was super irritated with her schedule, Andi realized a need for dog care for people who work hours beyond the normal 9-5.
Before creating Happy Hound Playground, Andi trained as a Dog Training and Behavior Specialist Apprentice. Her dog, Gonzo, picked her to be his mom when his foster mom brought him to one of the classes Andi was helping with as an apprentice. Andi has done extensive work and training with Gonzo and his dog reactivity issues and has watched him go from extreme dog aggresssion, to actually being able to happily play with other dogs.
Andi also worked as a Certified Pet Care Technician at PetsHotel and volunteers with Golden Retriever Rescue of the Rockies in order to learn as much as possible about dog behavior, dog training, Pet First Aid and CPR, and pet care in general. She has some training in TTouch and has studied the works of Dr. Sophia Yin, Victoria Stillwell, Dr. Patricia McConnell, Turid Rugaas, and Grisha Stewart, to name a few.
My name is Sydney, born and raised in Colorado. I have always had a passion for animals, especially dogs. I currently own two of my own, and they both have come a long way with one on one training. Both were abused rescues with different cases. The male was aggressive towards all men, he would growl and lunge at any man who walked in the door. The female was aggressive towards any new company coming into the house. Neither one of them bit anyone but would show teeth, growl, and stomp their feet.
With the help of tons of love, affection and reassurance that no one was going to hurt them anymore, they both became trusting towards people. Both needed slow interaction with people at first, having people either sit down before they were introduced or come in with treats helped them see that people who were invited in were not a threat. Both of them had so much love to offer but were not given the chance.
As a pet owner, it feels amazing to build a connection with "aggressive" dogs. Not only does your companion have so much trust in you but it also gives the feeling of satisfaction that you rescued an animal they said wouldn't be a good addition to your family. To those who do have aggressive dogs, it's not easy but with time, love and patience they will be forever grateful for their new homes.
Hello! My name is Sarah Springston and I am a proud owner of a Golden Retriever named Willow, a Cardigan Corgi named Smoky, and a cat named Azula! My husband and I love taking our fur babies on hikes or just a leisurely walk through many of the parks that are right outside our doorstep.
I am certified in Pet First Aid and CPR, trained in Positive Reinforcement, and Noble Beast’s Prickly Pooch class has given me plenty of tools to use with fearful and reactive dogs.
For several years, I operated a dog boarding business out of my home and I absolutely loved being with all of the different dogs and gaining more experience on how to care for them. I’m so excited to now be working for Happy Hound Playground and continue to do what I am passionate about! Thank you for giving me the opportunity to spend time with your furry family members!
Erin originally came from Georgia, and moved to Denver in 2010. She attends MSU for her bachelors in Environmental Science, while also working as a home health aide.
Erin is certified in both People and Pet CPR and First Aid. She completed Knowing Dogs 101 and Noble Beast's Prickly Pooch classes and is continuing her training in pet behavior, and pet care.
Erin has owned many dogs, cats, fish, and even one turtle since she was little. She started pet sitting for her neighbors when she turned 13. She grew up learning how to care for and handle farm animals, and still works on her grandparent’s farm in Southern Colorado. Erin loves giving rescue dogs a good home, and likes to help wandering or stray pets in the streets. Erin has love for all critters, and is striving to own her own homestead.
Susan has a fascinating background in critters! She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Zoology and an Associate’s degree in Exotic Animal Training and Management. Her education served her well in her years at the Houston Zoo where she worked as both a Primate Keeper and Carnivore Keeper. Some of Susan’s zoo adventures include raising and caring for various types of monkeys and orangutans, as well as operant conditioning training of lions, cougars, leopards, caracal, and fossa. After training, walking, and caring for these big kitties for years, pet-sitting is a breeze for Susan.
Many shelter and rescue dogs have benefited from Susan’s ability to train them. She helped several dogs get “furever” homes by being more adoptable after she taught them the basic tools needed to become someone’s beloved family member. Susan has also trained pygmy goats and red-tailed hawks for educational shows.
Susan has a history of pet-sitting not only dogs and cats, but many exotic animals such as pigs, reptiles, ducks, chickens, turtles, guinea pigs, and rabbits. If you have an exotic pet, Susan is the one you want caring for him or her! And with a background as a Vet Nurse and Vet Assistant, Susan is wonderful at administering medications or subcutaneous fluids.
Norma is a NYC native who moved out west to have continuous access to nature through farming and hiking. Initially she enrolled at NYU to pursue a veterinary career but had a change of heart as she realized it entailed far less quality time with critters and more with technicalities. Ultimately, she completed her BA in economics and currently owns and operates her own mobile juice bar.
Norma has trained in Positive Reinforcement, Pet CPR and First Aid, and enjoyed learning how to care for reactive pups through Noble Beast's Prickly Pooch classes. She shares her home with her beloved cat, Snow, her well behaved pup, Carlita and two adorable, Holland Lop bunnies named Willie and Cardi.
After decades of being firmly on "Team Cat", a chance to drop off donations and tour an animal shelter opened up an opportunity for Wendy to be on "Team Dog." She spent 2 1/2 years volunteering at Evanston Animal Shelter in Illinois, where she was known for her quiet energy; gentle with fearful and shy dogs, and calming for the energetic dogs.
She will admit to a secret love for the special needs doggies! If the shelter dogs could talk, they would tell you that she's horrible at throwing balls, but is willing to go hiking through the bushes and mud puddles in search of fun scents, and gives a pretty decent back rub to relieve the stress from the shelter.
The chance to open her home to foster dogs was also a great learning opportunity, until she finally adopted Rowan, who she refers to as "her 75lb bunny chaser". Since relocating to Colorado in 2018, Wendy and Rowan enjoy frequent hikes, a bit of running, and daily "sniffaris" in search of rabbits and other interesting scents.
In her spare time Wendy now volunteers at Foothills Animal Shelter in Golden, and enjoys learning enrichment activities such as canine nose work. Her favorite dog training philosophies are those of Dr. Ian Dunbar and Susan Garrett.
Wendy is K9 CPR and First Aid certified and has learned care techniques for reactive dogs through Noble Beast's Prickly Pooch classes.
Sarah will be a wonderful friend to your pet! She is certified in first aid and CPR for both people and animals. She has completed Noble Beast Prickly Pooch training classes for reactive dogs. Sarah works mainly in North West Denver and Arvada.
Sarah has a varied work background before she came to work at Happy Hound Playground. The constant in her life has been the presence of animals, mainly dogs.
She raised four puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind through Paws-4-Sight 4-H club. One of the dogs, Porter, was placed as a seeing-eye-dog, and he successfully led his person for eight years. Sarah was a foster parent for a local animal rescue organization and opened her home to many dogs in need.
Sarah has parented various animals including a miniature poodle, chickens, parakeets, and fish. Like many Coloradoans, Sarah enjoys being outdoors in this beautiful state, running, walking, and hiking with her husband, three sons, and her quirky dog, Lily.
Hello, I’m Katrina, your pet's new buddy! I am an experienced and energetic pet caregiver. I will offer your pet whatever it needs including love and attention, playtime, basic grooming, feeding, walks and/or medicine administration. I have years of experience with all breeds of dogs (and cats) and am astute at providing for the needs of all animals.
I am reliable and trustworthy and my goal is to give your pet all the love, social interaction, and exercise it wants! I am a belly rub specialist and well-practiced at the art of throwing tennis balls on a non-stop basis. I have also spend many-a-night tossing around feather toys for my cats. I am Pet CPR and First Aid Certified and have completed Noble Beast's Prickly Pooch training class for reactive dogs. I look forward to meeting your furry family member!