Paws in the Water
The women of SplashDog Spa offer water therapy, exercise and training for dogs, with a goal of improving canine quality of life.
After a tour of the warm-water therapy pool at SplashDog Spa, Canine Water Therapist Leigh Anne Hardy offers me a seat at her desk so we can chat. Not even five minutes into the interview, a loud bark resounds from parking lot, and three large dogs come bounding into the building, straining against their leashes.
Pudge, a blonde and portly English Stout, leads the pack and sniffs her way up to Hardy, who greets the six-year-old dog with a scratch between the eats and a cheerful laugh. Pudge veers away and leads her owner, Barb Spencer, up the ramp to the pool.
“I can’t say enough about this place,” Spencer gushed as she reined in her other two dogs. She has been bringing her dogs to water therapy for over a year now, driving all the way from Whidbey Island for the weekly sessions. “With Pudge, she had to lose 30 pounds before she could have surgery. Not only does she love it here, but I’ve seen a huge improvement in her health.”
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