Today we are excited to shine the spotlight on one of our loyal clients, John Mullen, and his four-legged working companions. Read more to learn about the role that dogs play in his and his family's lives, and what brought them into ours!
John Mullen is a fourth generation Arizonan. Born and raised in Tempe, he built a career in the lumber industry there, surrounding himself with family. John and his wife have always enjoyed the antics and unique personalities of dogs, so after their third son was born, they became interested in the campanionship of a family dog, and raised their three boys alongside two golden retrievers.
"First and foremost, any dog, even a working breed, is primarily a companion. "
In 2012, John retired, sold his lumberyards, and settled down with his wife in the Village of Oakcreek. Today they are joined by their two 5-year-old working dogs, Rheanna, a female Wirehaired Pointing Griffon, and Kona, a female Pudelpointer. John has trained Rheanna and Kona to hunt, and when he can, he keeps them busy tracking and retrieving upland gaming birds, primarily Pheasant, Chukar, and Quail. "First and foremost, any dog, even a working breed, is primarily a companion," he shares, "If I am Lucky, I will get to hunt with my dogs about 5% of the time."
"All dogs, no matter how small or large, follow [pack] instincts. Teaching them [obedience] early will make for a life long, well-mannered companion."
John goes on to share about the pack animal nature of dogs, "The need for obedience is paramount. All dogs, no matter how small or large, follow the group instincts. In order to keep the balance, there will always be an alpha in the pack. If an dog's trainer or handler (owner), does not step up to become that alpha, then the dog will, and things will become difficult. This lack of balance is the root of all behavior issues with canines." John believes that no matter what kind of dog you have or their role in your life, teaching them essential commands early, like "heal", "come", "sit", and "stay", will make for a life-long, well-mannered companion.
John has been bringing Rheanna and Kona to Hillside for over 3 years now, taking advantage of our grooming and luxury boarding services. "Hillside has been a valuable resource for us. Their staff are great, caring people, and being located right off I-17 is very convenient when travelling to Phoenix and flying out of Sky Harbor."
We have very much enjoyed getting to know John, Rheanna, and Kona, and want to thank everyone in the Verde Valley who have allowed us to serve them and their four-legged families! Stay tuned later this month for team spotlight on the Hillside family!