Growing up in a competitive dog show home, Shelah Frey was raised with a love for animals by her mother—her mentor. Shelah learned from a young age how to care for, train and manage dogs in their multi-dog home. Her mother mentored her into the competition ring, where her hobby became her career.
An independent professional dog trainer and handler since 1999, Shelah made the decision to shift her focus from professional dog show handling in 2013 and immerse herself in family dog training. “After many years working with animals, I realized this is a passion and loved helping families work through issues with their pets. This has been a rewarding experience.”
As one of the top breeders of Labrador Retrievers (Mainland Labrador Retrievers) in the world, Shelah has a long devotion to one of the best family pets. “I start training my puppies at four days of age. Along with excellent temperaments, they are beautiful pets. Many of my dogs go on to be therapy and guide dogs, which has been one of my proudest achievements.”
Born and raised on Mercer Island, Shelah has truly enjoyed living in the great Pacific Northwest. With many of her family and friends relocating to Gig Harbor, Shelah decided to follow her heart and move to Gig Harbor in 2016 and launch her own canine coaching program through HarborDog Boarding and Training, LLC. December 2018 she celebrates her business’s second anniversary!
At HarborDog, you will find an intimate boarding kennel where Shelah generally takes in less than eight dogs at any given time. Here they believe a strong canine coach can assist any family through the stages of a pet’s life. And training doesn’t end with ‘puppy basics.’ “We are here to provide a guide wherever your pal is in their life,” says Shelah. What makes HarborDog unique from other similar businesses is that they offer in-home or excursion lessons to stimulate training needs. Personalized schedules are made depending on your dog’s individual needs and/or issues. They also offer a three-week boarding and training program, which includes private lessons; these lessons can be done in the client’s home.
For those interested in competitive events for their canine athlete, Shelah and her staff have decades of experience to help you and your furry friend find that winning edge.
When it comes to what Shelah finds most rewarding about the work she does, she says it’s helping families love their pets. “When an animal becomes part of the family, it really has a responsibility and we want to trust that pet. Family coaching brings everyone to a great understanding of each other’s needs.”
Welcoming a new family member into your home is an important life decision. With her expertise and dedication, Shelah is ready and willing to implement a personalized training program that’s right for your dog—and your family. To find out more, call Shelah at 425.466.6208.
HarborDog Boarding and Training, LLC
14915 Crescent Valley Drive NW
Gig Harbor, Washington 98332