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A photograph of a white woman and a brindle lurcher sitting on the grass



I spent a very long time trying to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up, but it turns out a calling has a way of finding you when you’re not looking for it. I had started to believe that I was actually just a person without a passion, and I was ok with being quite good at things I didn’t find quite that interesting. Frankly, I had no idea how much life had to offer until Hector landed in mine and altered its course forever. A friend of mine says you don’t get the dog you want, you get the dog you need and she’s absolutely right. Hector was not the dog I had in mind, but he is the dog who has taught me everything I needed to know about myself as well as the of the unfathomable depths of non-human friendship.

A rescue bull lurcher mix with aggressive dog reactivity, Hector had been passed around a bit before I brought him home to my completely impractical house on the corner of two dual carriageways. Those early months were a real trial by fire for me and Hec. Everyone in the city had a new lockdown dog for us to run away from. It wasn’t unusual for us to see 15-20 dogs on a short neighbourhood walk. The only way to make it through was to fall down the rabbit hole of canine behaviour science. Two years later I decided to quit my job with the emergency services and go pro, starting a specialised dog walking business for reactive and sensitive dogs. Since March 2023 I have spent almost every day in the company of a diverse group of behaviourally eccentric dogs, and every day they have taught me something new.

Alongside my handling experience I have been undertaking continuous study with Canine Principles, Grisha Stewart Academy, FDSA and School of Canine Science. Every single dog is an individual with his or her own wants, needs and worries. There is always a new puzzle to solve and science is revealing new things about our dogs every day. This job is endlessly fascinating, and I feel so lucky to be able to pull on my dungarees and do it every day.


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