When I adopted Daisy, she reacted badly to many commercial foods and treats. Baking for her allowed me to know exactly what was going into her dog treats and to manage her intolerance to some ingredients. It also helped me to avoid additives, artificial colours and preservatives which are found in most commercial dog treats.
She loved them (and still does). All of our recipes are ‘Daisy tested and approved.’
In July 2007, I got thinking: ‘There are probably other people who feel the same way about what they feed their dog. I’ll go public!’ and so I launched Canine Catering.
At first I attended markets like the Riccarton Rotary Market, but realised that dog owners are busy and they want to spend quality time with their dog – not running all over town for products every time they need them. I started listing treats on Trade Me and then launched the first company website offering online ordering.
In October 2009, I added canine therapeutic massage to the company practice after training in the United States. This training opened up a whole new door for me and Canine Catering. I knew I could do more than offer quality dog treats to dogs in New Zealand – I could help them in their old age or when recovering from illness or injury. And I chose to be mobile so I could take the pressure off of busy dog owners with the added benefit that dogs are usually most comfortable in their own home.
In December 2009, I also completed study in Pet Nutrition through Colorado State University to round out my knowledge of nutrition. At this point, I re-worked some of my recipes to avoid high allergen ingredients such as corn.
In September 2010, I achieved another qualification in canine sports massage – another hands-on qualification earned in the USA. I continue to look for opportunities to improve my skills and keep my education up-to-date because this business is a life-long journey. Even by researching articles for my blog, I discover new developments in dog rehabilitation.
My professional development has included:
- Holistic Health for Animals at the Canterbury College of Natural Medicine (2006)
- CTMT at the Rocky Mountain School of Animal Acupressure and Massage (2009)
- CSMT at the Rocky Mountain School of Animal Acupressure and Massage (2010)
- Giving Hearts Workshop at Best Friends Animal Society (2012)
- Volunteer internship at Angell Memorial Animal Hospital, Boston (2012)
- Pet Tech CPR/First Aid certification (2012)
- Overview to Traditional Chinese Medicine for Small Animals, Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Institute (2013)
- Small Animal Meridian Theory, Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Institute (2013)
- Foundation Skills for Working with Dogs, Best Friends Animal Society (2013)
My memberships include:
- New Zealand Institute of Management
- New Zealand Companion Animal Council
- International Association of Animal Massage and Bodywork
I adhere to the IAAMB code of ethics.