February first, Oliver and Jose took over Jordan Bay Dog Daycare. Oliver worked there as the manager last summer and was offered the chance to take over the business at the beginning of the year. With their combined experience with animals, all of the clients stayed on through the transition.
Oliver is an actress and performs on local stages. Jose is a retired professional dancer. Between thetwo, being in front of an audience is in their blood. “Performing is in my past and Shannon’s present and future,” said Jose. It is no wonder the daycare is based on the theater.
From 8-week-old puppies to elderly dogs, the daycare “auditions” each dog to make sure their temperament is right for them to fit in with the current cast. They attempt to place likeminded temperaments together, they said.
Each area of the building has a name like the Green Room, Black Box, Main Stage and Backstage. The staff are stage managers and cast members. The cast even has impromptu choir practice some afternoons with howling and barking.
After some renovations, including fresh paint and a redesigned entry and training space, the Puppy Room will open for dogs from eight weeks to sixteen weeks featuring lots of breaks and a schedule that will help manage their behavior, said Jose, who is a Karen Pryor Academy certified training partner. The Puppy Room will be open three days a week for half or full days.
Oliver started working in a dog daycare where she learned the methods for dog training. “It’s great we found each other. We have the same goals for these dogs,” said Oliver. She hopes to become Karen Pryor trained.
There will be light grooming, basic training and private training sessions, called rehearsals. The rehearsals are often recorded and report cards are sent home. Basic training for all clients happen morning, midday and night. The dogs learn to come when called and refocus their attention when needed.
“We are focusing on positive reinforcement. We use clicker training,” Jose said. The goal is to have the dogs get use to their foundation training.”
“Puppies need daycare and to be trained,” Oliver said.
Jose started her dog journey helping a breeder. She had her own dogs which she bred and showed. She is also certified in canine nutrition and trains service dogs.
“I have an applied science certification from the Animal Behavior Institute. The animal training and enrichment incorporated into the daily routine sets us apart,” Jose said. Jose added that it’s more beneficial for the dogs if the center offers something different.
The center is a work in progress. There will be private lessons for an additional charge offered during the days. And training classes for the public, whose fur babies don’t attend Hello, Doggie! will be offered on Saturday mornings.
There will be a dog to cast member ratio for each room for a total of 25 dogs and 10 puppies at one time. There are no breed restrictions. “We love dogs as long as they’re friendly and healthy,” said Oliver. “My life has taken me all different directions. I found something that really fulfills me.
They’re people’s children. If I didn’t want to bring my dogs to work, that’s a red flag,” she added.
Their philosophy is “dog safety, enrichment and their wellbeing.” There are no drop ins and the owners encourage people to stop by to take a tour or meet them. They are open 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.
There will be an open house on Saturday, April 14 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Also, Jose and Oliver will be at Pet Life in Windham from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 7 to discuss their stage and schedule auditions.
For more information, visit them at www.hellodoggiedaycare.com or find them on Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat or call 207-655-6521.