It is not just humans feeling isolated. Think of the puppies

April 9, 2020

Hannah Knight’s rather unique start-up business has just passed its first anniversary.

Knight Tails is a Connemara-based doggy daycare service for small dogs, collected each morning and dropped off every evening at their homes from Inverin to Galway city, including Knocknacarra and Salthill.

And to celebrate her first year in business at the end of March, “I was planning on throwing a party for the dogs to celebrate.” But it was not to be.

When Covid-19 became a reality for Ireland, people began working from home and looking after their dogs themselves – a loss for her business but also for the pets, she said, which enjoyed each other’s company.

The business continued for a while but she did not have enough clients to be able to open each day and knew the business would have to close, before the formal Government shutdown of all but essential services.

She had wanted to see “if I could help any health workers or anybody who is not able to walk their dog themselves”.

And despite the adverse circumstances she said she was “absolutely overwhelmed how kind and supportive my clients have been”.

“A lot of people offered to pay me anyway which of course I won’t accept but it is just so kind and generous. And people are reassuring me that as soon as this is over, they’ll be back using my service as normal.”

Originally from Yorkshire in England, Ms Knight spent childhood summers in Connemara and later worked full-time in the fashion industry in London.

“I got a small puppy and was learning how difficult it was to look after a dog while working full-time so I started using dog-walking services. I used to have to travel so I started using overnight boarding services.”

Working day

Her normal day would have started with picking up the dogs from their houses. “I have quite a few where I just open the van door and they just run straight out of the house and jump in which is a nice way to start.

“It’s like meet and greet in the morning. They all say their hellos and start playing with each other.

“They all have their pals, it’s like kids meeting up in a school playground. They all have their favourites. They know who wants to play and who wants to nap.”

They have “enrichment time where they’ll have toys to play with to use their brain to find treats inside things”.

“Sometimes we do a treasure hunt where I’ll hide treats around the daycare.”

At lunchtime they would go for a walk down to the beach and some will go swimming as well.

“In the afternoon they have nap time and snuggle up together on the couch.

“There is indoor and outdoor space and whoever wants to nap can sit inside and the others can play outside.”

That socialisation is now on hold as owners keep apart.

“It seems a bit surreal, that I worked really hard over the past year to build it up and then suddenly it feels like it’s going,” Ms Knight said. “But I do feel confident that it will come back and I just have to stay positive.”

  • Most Recent News

    Former Victoria man’s diabetic alert dog helps him get back to life

    June 2, 2021

    When Luke Hengen’s diabetes worsened in his early twenties, it stripped him of the outdoor activities where the country kid felt at home. Countless wilderness adventures and years of hard-fought football games took a toll on his body, to the point where he could no longer sense when his blood sugar was too high or […]

    Read more

    Students Get Therapy Dog

    January 8, 2021

    When middle school students return to class on Jan. 11, they’ll find a new face at the door: Daisy. Daisy is a therapy dog and the personal pet of Rob Kreger, principal of the Rock L. Butler Middle School. The five-year-old golden retriever is not a school pet or mascot, but rather a working dog […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dogtor

    January 8, 2021

    Last March, Caroline Benzel, a third-year medical student, began to notice the stress and discomfort her nurse friends were feeling from the pressures of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. “[Personal protective equipment] can be really rough on the skin,” Benzel, 31, tells PEOPLE. Benzel and her 3-year-old Rottweiler, Loki (who’s also a therapy dog) hatched a […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dog Pups

    January 8, 2021

    When Stanley the miniature fox terrier’s owner passed away, the little dog started a ‘paw-some’ new role – bringing puppy love to some of the Gold Coast’s oldest residents. After Carinity Cedarbrook Diversional Therapist Julianne Staff adopted Stanley, he began visiting the aged care community at Mudgeeraba as a therapy dog. Therapy dogs help to […]

    Read more

    Puppy Cams

    January 7, 2021

    A nonprofit is providing an unusual form of therapy for those on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic – puppy cams! “You spend five minutes with a puppy and try not to smile,” said registered nurse Robin Lingg Lagrone. Lingg Lagrone says watching little furballs wag their tails and prance on their paws helps […]

    Read more

    Pet Committee

    January 7, 2021

    When Moore County’s school doors were abruptly closed earlier in 2020, two- and four-legged volunteers from the Moore County Citizens’ Pet Responsibility Committee (PRC) were in their 12th year of presenting a six-session Pet Responsibility Education Program for fourth-graders. The PRC quickly shifted gears and placed its program materials online as part of a home […]

    Read more

    The Right Rescue Dog

    January 7, 2021

    If your New Year’s resolution is to add a canine family member, good for you. Somewhere out there is the perfect puppy or adult dog for your family. You have a lot of things to think about when you begin to look for that new family member, puppy or dog? Large or small? Purebred or […]

    Read more

    Police Dog Attack

    January 7, 2021

    A resolution headed to the Duluth City Council on Monday could put to rest a lawsuit filed by Teri Lynn Ehlers, an employee of the Patch Motel, who was bitten by a Duluth police dog named Oakley. Former Duluth Police Officer Marc Johnson was a registered guest of the Warroad establishment May 28, 2018, when […]

    Read more

    PAWS With A Cause

    January 7, 2021

    Pebble Hill Plantation and the Thomas County Public Library are pleased to announce the upcoming Enlightening Bites program, “PAWS With a Cause,” on Friday, January 8, 2021 at noon in the Flipper Room of the Library. The program is being presented by Jeri Anderson, field representative. Anderson is recently retired from the City of Monticello, […]

    Read more

    Police Canine Team

    January 7, 2021

    Kingston Police revealed in a news release late Wednesday afternoon that they’ve been keeping a four-legged secret for roughly three months. The force announced it added a second canine unit, with the arrival of police service dog Dak this past October. He is working with Const. Jeff Dickson, while police service dog Bask is working […]

    Read more

    More Recent News