Dog walker Boone Elliott's pack isn't open to just any old mutt. Dogs have to meet some standards before being accepted and rewarded with fun trips to Magnuson Park.
41st in an occasional series
There’s Chewy, Dakota, Stella and Max. And Lulu, Chrome, Chloe and Rex.
All had to try out to join the club, though they didn’t know there was an audition.
But if these dogs wanted to run with Boone Elliott’s pack, they had to exhibit proper social skills within the group and in public. Aggressive behavior is not tolerated.
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Dog walker Elliott says they just can’t have that first sniff of each other in the tight space of a van.
“So, I meet the parents at their home first.”
Then it’s to Elliott’s yard. If everyone is cool they get to join the daily Frisbee chasing, ball tossing, jogging and dip into Lake Washington waters with him at the off-leash area of Magnuson Park in Seattle.
“It’s like going to school without the classes, without the homework,” he says.
And for $25 to $30 a day, “they’ll see friends and fulfill their social needs.”
Elliott likes to keep the pack smaller — eight or nine dogs, tops.
But, “I’m Alpha Dog, gotta be,” he says, even with his own Aussie shepherd, Denali.
He calls his service Rocket Dog because everyone “is fired up and will have a blast.”
When their session is over, it’s back in the van where all is still, and they sit quietly. No jumping about, no barking. Just each dog tired and lost in its own thoughts.
Alan Berner: 206-464-8133 or firstname.lastname@example.org