Oh, Behave

 

Denise Mullenix, owner of Behave Canine Solutions, can take almost any situation and turn it into a positive. With more than fourteen years of working with dogs in a professional capacity, she’s committed to helping owners master basic commands, as well as meet more advanced challenges. Does your canine cower and howl during thunderstorms? Perhaps you’re expecting an addition to the family (child or pet) and need to ensure a smooth introduction and transition. Mullenix and her nine-person staff use only positive reinforcement techniques to strengthen the bond between pet and owner without creating any confrontational situations. Whether it’s puppy socialization, separation anxiety, or reactivity at the door (i.e., jumping and barking), Behave can tackle it. Group classes are available at Wag the Dog and Salty’s Dog & Cat Shop in Southeast, Noah’s Arf in Northwest, and a few other spots in the area. Or just request a house call. (503-488-5555; behavetraining.com)



The Kindest Cut

 

A SE Hawthorne Boulevard haunt since 1995, Portland’s Pampered Pets is the place for primping pooches of all ages, breeds, and sizes. Owner Diane Carlson, a twenty-two-year veteran of the clip-and-clean biz, is known as a whiz for spiffing up even breeds that need a little extra attention, such as soft-coated wheaten terriers, which require a hand-scissor job to get the proper cut. Crossbreeds like Labradoodles and goldendoodles are popular pets, but their easily matted undercoats can be a royal pain—Carlson and her crew are able to finesse even the toughest tangles without causing so much as a whimper. Plus, the vibe is so friendly that regulars often stop by with their furry friends just to hang out and chew the fat—just like a real neighborhood barbershop. (4236 SE Hawthorne Blvd; 503-233-2799)

Bow-wow Boutique

If one day you gaze down at your Weimaraner and think, “He’d look great in a tutu,” then you should pop by one of *LexiDog*’s four Portland-area locations, where you’ll find costumes and accessories to suit any mood or breed. Crystal-studded collars by D&F ($60), for instance, add glamour to the crossbred hound, while a leopard thong panty-shaped dog toy ($15, and yes, it squeaks) will have even the surliest of pit bulls howling with delight. Doting dog owners also will find the essentials here: high-end foods, chew sticks, and vitamins to soothe tired hips. With an on-site day care and a wide assortment of gourmet treats to help Portland dogs celebrate their birthdays (consider ordering a personalized cake while sending guests off with frosting-dipped duck strips), LexiDog can satiate any desire—whether yours or your Pomeranian’s. (416 NW 10th Ave, plus three other locations; 503-243-6200; lexidog.com)

Walking and Sitting

Here’s a riddle: why did a former pastry chef for Chez Panisse in Berkeley trade in her oven mitts for a job exercising some fifty dogs per week in Portland? “Well, I get to spend all day in the forest or by the river—with dogs. And they don’t talk back,” says Laurie Donaldson, the proprietor of The Tails of Two Cities. “Yeah, it’s usually wet and muddy, but it’s a pretty sweet job.” The amiable Donaldson offers a full menu of services of the dog-walking and pet-sitting variety, but most of her business comes from rounding up groups of up to six dogs at a time for a few hours of exercise—either in your neighborhood or at an off-leash location. She’ll even pick up and deliver. “A tired dog is a good dog,” Donaldson notes—with a happy owner, too. (510-517-1644; tailsoftwocities.com)