Here at Doonane what I provide for your dog is a lot more than just shelter. What I provide to you is more than a solution to where your dog will stay while you’re away.  I provide an experience for your dog like no other and for you, peace of mind.

I have very strong beliefs when it comes to animal ethics, I have seen some facilities and have heard some upsetting reports in my time that just makes my head spin and my blood boil. I make no compromises on the quality of care I provide here at Doonane.

I learned my trade not from text books or tutorials, but from the best teachers in dog behavior and care, the dogs themselves. My learning is grounded in observation and instinct.  People are always amazed at how I can walk 20 dogs at the same time off lead. I operate from an understanding of pack behavior and the reason why it works is because I’m the pack leader.

Dogs are intelligent. I am forever amazed at how they get to know their roles and routines so fast. For example, they can sense the end of our hour long walking sessions and without prompting, they head to the gate, go back to their pen and most outstanding, is that they return to the same pen every time!

Once a routine has kicked in, the dogs settle down very quickly. They even start barking at 3 o’clock cause they know its walkies time again. God love me if I’m late. Dogs are amazing and very underestimated!

I have spent the last 15 years observing the behavior of hundreds of dogs, every year I learn more and more about our four legged friends!

I believe that I now have a true and instinctual understanding of canine behavior.

I’m a firm believer that dogs should be allowed behave as dogs, very often and for various reasons, they are not afforded that freedom in their home environments. A lot of dogs don’t have the pack experience. My philosophy is that when here, I facilitate that experience.

I have five dogs of my own. I completely understand people’s concerns when preparing to board their dog. I have had numerous conversations with my customers over the years and these concerns are often justified as many have had horrendous and upsetting experiences when putting their pet into care.

At Doonane, you are not only welcome, but encouraged to come in and spend some time to look around.

We operate with full transparency about our facilities and my approach to caring for your dog. There are no surprises and certainly no false promises.

I’m so confident in the standard of our accommodations, that I would be happy enough to bunker down and sleep alongside the dogs in these kennels. I would not expect our precious guests to settle in and sleep somewhere I would not do so myself.

I go the extra mile for all Dogs at Doonane.

Even after bed time, I continue to monitor all guests through a sophisticated CCTV system which I have access to from TV, Phone and Computer. This system and I, am never, ever ‘off’.

The newbie

When a newbie dog arrives, they go through a natural initiation process. The already formed pack will approach and sniff the new arrival. At first the new dog may cower and retreat but always finds his natural place and will quickly become part of the pack. I observe each initiation until the pack instinct kicks in, which usually happens in an instant.

It’s always amusing to observe the smallest dogs go through this process, you’d imagine they’d be more vulnerable, but it’s often the case that the smallest dogs end up putting all the other dogs in their place. I call it survival of the fittest, not biggest!


I walk the dogs in groups with mostly no leads. I don’t do this lightly and I’m never blasé about it, I incorporate socialisation into my approach. I plan each walk, having assessed who will get on OK and who needs to be separated.


They say never insult someone’s child or Dog! While owners can be understandably sensitive, I’m very quick to access the nature of a dog. In most cases, if I have any concerns, despite how good a mixer the owner might think the dog is, I won’t mix it. So if I make an assessment or report that your dogs behavior is incompatible, please don’t take it personally. I need to insure the safety of all dogs at Doonane.


I believe it’s necessary for dogs to interact with other dogs. Many kennels do not facilitate any canine interaction, some don’t even provide exercise!!

In most cases un-neutered males do not mix well in the pack. As we get busier and busier, unfortunately, I will not be able to take un-neutered adult males anymore.

Exercise and Distraction

I’m a firm believer that the only way to reduce canine anxiety is through exercise and distraction.  During your pet stay he/she will be out and about socialising with other guest under constant supervision.  We keep to a minimum the time your pet is in their pen, Guests are in their pen if its raining they need a nap or its visiting times.  With so much stimulation through out the day your pet will sleep very well throughout the night. This makes for a happy and content Guest.

Compatibility – Selection Criteria

When it comes to welfare, I do not compromise. A harmonious pack makes for happy dogs. At Doonane, my consideration is for the majority. I ensure the welfare and happiness of your dog, by establishing and facilitating harmony within the pack. To achieve this, there are certain considerations.

I have identified the following as what effects this harmony and informs my decision as to whether or not your dog will be a compatible guest.

Your dog is incompatible if he:

• Needs individual walking

• Suffers from separation anxiety

• Barks constantly

• Is an Un-Neutered Adult

• Is aggressive

• Is unsocialised

• Can jump 5 ft fences