As a child, I would care for cats, dogs, fish, rats and my pet squirrel, Rocky. For the past fifteen years, a career in sales paid the bills, but my heart still belonged to the dogs. I became actively involved in Animal Rescue as a volunteer, foster parent and dog trainer and have often been called a “stray magnet”, working diligently to reunite lost pets with their families.
Ten years ago, I was lucky enough to finally turn my dream into reality! I have been able to spend every day living my dream offering pet sitting and dog walking to Chandler and Gilbert residents. This Little Doggie Stayed home has also grown to include a pack of dog walkers and sitters and also provides balanced dog training and rehabilitation to families in the Phoenix, Chandler, Gilbert, Tempe, Mesa and Scottsdale areas. We provide personalized in home pet sitting and dog walking, as well as dog training and rehabilitation through private sessions or board and train programs.
I am beyond grateful to be living my dream day in and out, being part of a community of like-minded animal lovers and being able to help humans communicate with their pets. I am also very happy to be able to give back to my community in the form of pro bono dog training to several Valley animal rescue organizations. This Little Doggie Stayed Home looks forward to meeting you and your pets!
I was born in the dead of Winter in Minneapolis in the late 70’s and was raised in the great state of Minnesota until I wised up and headed out to the sunshine in 1996.
My love for animals spans back as far as I can remember and I can recall countless conversations, begging my Mom to let us add a dog to our family. As a single Mother, she knew a pet was the last thing we needed, but I knew she was wrong 🙂 At the age of 5, I “bought” my first puppy at a neighborhood garage sale; picked him out of a box at the end of their driveway with “Puppies” penned on the side all with my own allowance (a whole $5 in random coins no less). He was a little white mutt and like all little girls, I thought he should be named Buffy. My Mom was less than thrilled when I walked in with Buffy, but like all good mothers, she used this as an opportunity to teach me about responsibility. Mom also thought the name Buffy was ridiculous and insisted we name him Jake. Well, that was a boy’s name at school, so we compromised and named him BJ. BJ was a handful, but that is exactly what I needed to learn how to care for a living animal and he ended up being the best dog ever – living well into my college years. In addition to BJ, I cared for cats, other dogs, fish, rats and my pet squirrel, Rocky.
Once I moved to the desert, I attended Arizona State University and graduated with a degree in Communication. I got a sales job right out of college and continued to grow and excel in the sales arena well into my thirties. Although my sales career paid the bills, my heart still belonged to the animals so in my spare time, I became and continue to be actively involved in Animal Rescue as a volunteer, foster parent, dog trainer and have often been called a “stray magnet”, working diligently to reunite lost pets with their families.
Several of my sales jobs required me to travel and I was constantly stressed about who would watch my pets (I have a houseful of Boston Terriers who I often refer to as the “squish army” and am never without a foster) and wondered if they could be trusted. Nervous dog Mom was an understatement. So one day I decided to hang up my business suits, traded them in for sneakers and clothes covered in dog hair and This Little Doggie Stayed Home was born. I am beyond grateful to have been able to turn my passion for the animals into a career and absolutely love helping people with their pets! I look forward to adding you and your four-leggers to the TLDSH family!
Melanie is a fourth generation Arizona Native and is a lifelong friend of one of TLDSH’s oldest clients. She currently works as an Admissions Specialist at Walden University, where she evaluates grad school applicants. She majored in English at Northern Arizona University and has a love for continuing education, often taking classes in literature, art, instructional design and more. Between studying and working hard, Melanie loves traveling, painting, Starbucks and reading. She recently bought her first house and enjoys making it her “home”…the only thing that’s missing is her next furry rommate (or two). Because she is currently without a four-legger of her own, she is always on the lookout for new furry friends and before TLDSH was the go to pet sitter for her neighbors, friends and family.
Melanie grew up with a feisty Cocker Spaniel and a cuddly Cockapoo, along with a family cat and loads of hamsters. She loves dogs, cats, bunnies, rodents and even snakes! She is an absolute professional, an animal lover, intelligent, honest, has a giant heart and is an all around awesome person.
Kalen is one of the sweetest, animal loving dudes we’ve ever met and our TLDSH family is lucky to have him!
He was born and raised in Tucson and attended UofA where he graduated with a Business Management degree. He loves him some volleyball and played Division 1 in both Indiana and Arizona! Throughout his life, he’s owned all kinds of dogs and also cats. He is now Dad to Mocha a 10 year old Elderbull.
He is phenomenal with the animals, even the shy, scared of men types! In his spare time you can find him driving for Uber, working out, hiking with his pup or volunteering at his families dog rescue, Back the Blue!
Andrea is an Arizona native and has lived in Mesa most of her life. She graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelors degree in Elementary Education and spent three years in the classroom before taking a break to raise her adorable son. She’s a busy wife and mother, who enjoys cooking, reading, thrifting, going to baseball games and spending time with her doggos!
She adopted her first dog in 2013 from a local rescue, which then turned her on to fostering. She and her husband then fostered over twenty dogs and foster failed twice! Their pack, known as the “Tan Dog Trio” because they all look so much alike, consists of Izzy, Dallas, and Zinny.
Andrea is an incredibly kind, genuine and trustworthy person. She is incredibly organized and detail oriented, is a top notch dog handler and has the best energy! We are so excited to welcome her to the TLDSH team to help with the animals and the office fun…we just love her and know you and your pets will too!
Tammy was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii and attended college in the Bay Area, where she graduated with a Dental Hygiene degree. Tammy and her family have lived in California, Oregon and have just recently made their home here in the Valley! She’s a busy wife and Mother to two energetic sons and their newly adopted four-legger, Nalu!! They are an active young family who love spending time outdoors, exploring new places, taking bike rides and going for runs (all of which Nalu gets to join in on too!)
Nalu is the families first rescue adoption and he’s been the perfect addition to their home. Tammy has also become an incredible handler as she has learned to work through his dog reactivity challenges.
Tammy is an incredibly kind, genuine and trustworthy person. She has super calm energy, is an awesome handler and an all around rockstar with the animals. We just love her and know your pets will to!
Jill was born and raised in Upstate New York but has lived all over including, South Carolina, Utah, New Jersey, Washington DC, Virginia, and Maryland. She graduated from Niagara University with a degree in Criminal Justice and spent the bulk of her adult life as a Federal Agent. Jill is a wife, a mother to two young sons, loves to hike, mountain bike, crossfit, teaches gymnastics and has a soft spot for all things animal. She has been surrounded by pets her whole life and currently has a Corgi/Chihuahua mix named Pete and two cats, Vern and Maggie.
Jill is a bit of a badass, super responsible, kindhearted and is one of the most passionate animal loving girls we’ve met! We feel incredibly lucky to have her on our team to help care for all the pets and can’t wait for you to meet her!
Markel was born and raised in Arizona and attended high school in AJ. After graduating, she moved on to college where she studied both social work and fashion design. She worked in behavioral health with children and families for over 10 years while running a pet sitting business on the side!
Markel is a devoted Mom to a 10 year old daughter and has a baby on the way 😊 In her free time, she enjoys DOGS, being outside, adventuring, decorating, crafting and shopping. She also loves all things vintage and desert! Her pack includes Mouse, Milo and Daisy and humans, Andy and Brooklyn 💜
Markel is genuine, has incredibly calm energy, impeccable attention to detail and has over a decade of experience running her own pet sitting show 😉 She is all heart, reliable and trustworthy and we know you are going to love her!
Understanding your dog's reasons for his reactions leads to a solution.
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