Our Why

In everything we do, we believe in challenging the status quo, we believe in thinking differently, we believe in providing dogs with experiences that will help them thrive in captive living, and we believe in having open communication and an exchange of dialog between all the human counterparts that are connected in enhancing each dog’s quality of life experience.

And the way we began challenging status quo back in 2003, was to give our dogs the freedom of space. In doing so, our dogs created their own freedoms. These included the freedom to learn, the freedom to express themselves as normal, freedom to be in nature, freedom to think, do, bark…

Doglando is a purpose driven, life-giving experience that happens to be doing business as a dog daycare.

Doglando gives dogs free range to a 6-acre, nature-rich, outdoor area that is full of sensory experiences and offers the 8 Spheres of Enrichment.

From Teena Patel (founder of Doglando)

Twenty years ago, I made a discovery. And this discovery profoundly changed my view on how I thought the dog daycare industry worked, and it even changed the way I operated in it.

As it turns out, there were patterns. Everyone working in the space of dog daycares, “pet resorts,” and pet boarding thought the same way, acted in the same ways, and communicated in exactly same way. I couldn’t justify any of it.

Let me explain…

Most of us (in business) communicate interpersonally. We say what we do, we say how we are different, and how we are better, and expect some sort of behavior from others.

For example, owners of doggie daycares often introduced their facilities to me by saying something like:

“Here is our facility. We are voted top 5 in the City’s best, we have a team who absolutely loves dogs. We have great packages to offer you. We offer daycare, boarding, and grooming services. We have 5 large indoor rooms. We have a bone-shaped pool… and this is why you should enroll your dog with us.”

Uninspiring.

I knew entrepreneurship wasn’t for the faint of heart. I knew (growing up as a child in a family of entrepreneurs) that I too would spend my early years spewing out my guts at times, I would be working from morning into the night, seven days a week. I’d have to pour every ounce of energy, blood, sweat, and even tears into overcoming challenges and hardships and quite possibly, I would be doing it alone (at least in the beginning). I needed a solid “Why” to fuel my mind, my body, my soul and my heart.

Doglando is a purpose driven, life-giving experience that happens to be doing business as a dog daycare.

Doglando gives dogs free range to a 6-acre, nature-rich, outdoor area that is full of sensory experiences and offers the 8 Spheres of Enrichment.

From Teena Patel (founder of Doglando)

Twenty years ago, I made a discovery. And this discovery profoundly changed my view on how I thought the dog daycare industry worked, and it even changed the way I operated in it.

As it turns out, there were patterns. Everyone working in the space of dog daycares, “pet resorts,” and pet boarding thought the same way, acted in the same ways, and communicated in exactly same way. I couldn’t justify any of it.

Let me explain…

Most of us (in business) communicate interpersonally. We say what we do, we say how we are different, and how we are better, and expect some sort of behavior from others.

For example, owners of doggie daycares often introduced their facilities to me by saying something like:

“Here is our facility. We are voted top 5 in the City’s best, we have a team who absolutely loves dogs. We have great packages to offer you. We offer daycare, boarding, and grooming services. We have 5 large indoor rooms. We have a bone-shaped pool… and this is why you should enroll your dog with us.”

Uninspiring.

I knew entrepreneurship wasn’t for the faint of heart. I knew (growing up as a child in a family of entrepreneurs) that I too would spend my early years spewing out my guts at times, I would be working from morning into the night, seven days a week. I’d have to pour every ounce of energy, blood, sweat, and even tears into overcoming challenges and hardships and quite possibly, I would be doing it alone (at least in the beginning). I needed a solid “Why” to fuel my mind, my body, my soul and my heart.

“Doglando became less about discovering something new, and more about uncovering something old.” -Teena Patel 

We’re weren’t just providing enrichment,

we started providing life-bettering imagination

From almost two decades of field research on street dogs and free-roaming dogs in developing countries, we have referred to an extensive range of data to help us develop our model of care – now commonly used, and called Canine Enrichment.

We have the dogs in our care socialize and interact in diverse groups of mixed breeds, ages, and sizes. We give our dogs our attention in an intentional way, by interacting with them with purpose to develop – first and foremost – a close human-dog relationship so that it carries over to their home-life.

We have policies that we are governed by, so that we can reliably deliver our intentions, and equally important so that we can align ourselves with dog parents who are in agreement with us in the intentions they have created for how their dogs should live, learn, and play.

We just happen to be a great doggy daycare.

“We believe dogs learn best off-leash, in nature, through play, and when they are honored (not tested) to be the creatures they are (not can become).” -Doglando

Our WHY Explains Two Other Truths About Us

Truth # 1

Why our members choose to stay true to their commitment to bring their dogs to Doglando twice a week, and in some cases 3 times a week, and have done so even 10 and 12 years later.

Our goal is not to do business with every dog parent in Orlando. Our goal is to do business with people who share what we believe in.

It’s not part of our “psychology”, it’s part of our “biology.”

Truth # 2

If you are the type of dog parent who finds absolute joy in hiking with your dogs, off-leash on trails and through the woods, or if you are the type of dog parent whose heart sings when you see your dog frolic through open fields far away into the distance, prancing gracefully and in full extension of their gait, running through the marsh, diving into the pond, to finally find the perfect spot on the beach sand to lay down in a shallow den, while basking in heat from the sun, then Doglando is for you.

We Believe

We believe dogs thrive most when they can exercise their desires (much like us). We believe dogs don’t need food, water, shelter, and love more than they need the freedom to be free. We believe dogs need access to the great outdoors. We believe they need fresh air, open fields, trees, large bodies of water, dirt, and human company. We believe dogs are healthiest when they are free to express themselves, and we believe they are highly capable of avoiding fights, forming rich relationships with both intra- and inter-specific species.

We believe dogs are incredible adapters… they have evolved alongside mankind and other animals for billions of years. We believe restricted environments are slowly killing our dogs.

We believe our dysfunctional lifestyles are contributing to their ill-health. We believe dogs know how to co-exist, co-habitate, co-operate and collaborate… harmoniously with people, dogs, and to a certain degree, with other animals. We believe their intolerances (also know as reactiveness) are inadequacies created by their human counterparts.

“We don’t have a plan, we have a dream. Our dream is to experience dogs in the same way our grandparents experienced their dogs. Living freely, walking children to the bus stop, and being faithful companions.” -Teena Patel

     

    When our members show up at Doglando, they’re not showing up for us… they are showing up for themselves. For what they believe about Doglando.

    Our work is quite simple – we exist because we have busted through the myths of “need to be strict, show who’s boss, need to be an alpha, need to take things away and need to bribe, need to motivate, need to deprive, need to use force, intimidation and pain, need to control, need to manipulate, need to modify behavior, need to train, need to teach.” These needs are ours, not theirs.

    And, as we continue to become more and more congruent with the way dogs think, feel, and do, we are merely experiencing the joys of re-booting a relationship that was once known as “man’s best friend”.

    Okay, okay, we realize that’s too far of a stretch, and times have changed.

    We can still be the fierce protectors, untiring advocates, and loyal companions our dogs need us to be.

    That’s our “Why”.

    OUR INSPIRATION

    Throughout evolution, dogs have always played a crucial role in their relationship with mankind.

    Today, their roles have become even more significant and unfortunately, the relationship between humans and dogs is proving to be more biased than mutual.

    “If we don’t fiercely protect their right for freedom, and break them loose of the control, intimidation, force, bribery, manipulation, and unnecessary restrictions we have imposed on them, they too will face extinction in the near future.”

    -Teena Patel

      Teena with street dogs
      street dogs

      The Weighted Relationship

      Never before have dogs been responsible for our mental and emotional health. They have helped us fulfill physical, tangible and observable tasks, but nowadays, we have bombarded them with the pressures of helping us maintain our own psychological wellbeing, never mind their own.

      the overwhelmed pet parent chart
      the restricted companion dog chart

      How Did Street Dogs Become Our Teachers?

      For almost two decades, our founder, Teena Patel, has traveled the world documenting free roaming dogs and street dogs in developing countries. They are our inspiration.

      Here are some of our lessons from street dogs and free roaming dogs:

      • When their environments become limited, stagnant and sterile, their behavior becomes reflective of their poor living conditions and the quality of experiences that occur as a result.
      • Dogs need, and seek, human companionship.
      • Dogs develop a “community like” intra-species connection.
      • Survival is often misrepresented as hardship.

      Certainly, there are challenges. However, there is a richness that is present when living beings, in particular mammals, have to convert energy into purpose.

      • It gives them meaning, and defines life.
      • It makes them adaptable, apt and attuned.
      • Learning becomes a way of living not training.

      Species will behave in a species-typical manner, and characteristics that contribute to their survival will persist; those that don’t will disappear. We need to help preserve the dog’s ability to:

       

      • Be effective communicators.
      • Prefer avoidance of conflict.
      • Be resilient, adaptive and highly flexible.
      street dogs
      street dogs beach

      “The environment is their first teacher.” -Teena Patel

      street dog
      street dogs beach

      “We aim to give dogs the freedom and purpose they once had. Protecting them from the dangers of the “streets” yet honoring them of all the benefits of having more space, access to nature and a rich environment to roam, we were inspired to give companion dogs some of the simple joys of living.”

      -Doglando

      What our members are saying…

      “Before working with Doglando, I owned boxers that were pretty much bananas. I thought that’s just the way dog ownership was; destructive behaviors, separation anxiety, and chasing them around the neighborhood when they got loose. I was exposed to Doglando while in between dogs, and once we decided to get a puppy I knew that she needed to be a Doglando dog. I didn’t struggle at all with Ella, and followed Doglando’s teachings fairly stringently, and now she’s one of the teaching dogs.

      I’ve tried clicker training, private training lessons, chain-choke collars, pretty much anything that I didn’t view as cruel. Although these tools can be useful, I was unaware of the overall lifestyle and philosophy/ideology of Doglando that gave me a better understanding of what a happy, resilient, confident dog looks like.

      My time working with Doglando has given me a new perspective on dogs (and other animals), our society, my children and myself. My assumption that things were just “the way things are” is no longer, and my family has benefited as a whole.”

      Jamie Cole

      “We have always been dog lovers and have always successfully trained our own dogs. However, when we rescued Abby, we soon realized that she was very challenging, and we had met our match. With Abby we struggled with everything from potty training to anxiety. After months of working with her without much success, we reached out to Doglando. We tried everything that we could think of, even having met with a trainer that came to our house.

      After several months in Skill Building, and spending a couple of days a week there, she has improved tremendously! We know that, thanks to her tremendous amount of energy and distraction level, we, along with Doglando, will need to continue to work with her some more, but she has improved leaps and bounds since starting at Doglando. She is a joy to have in our lives and Doglando has helped make our time with her even more enjoyable. She LOVES spending time there and immediately gets excited the minute that we turn into the road to the gate. She loves all the areas where she can play in the water and is always very excited to be able to play with other doggie friends. Doglando has been heaven sent!”

      Nery T.

      At Doglando, We Work With Dog Parents Who Are . . .

      Life-Giving

      The Doglando Parent is one who is a conscientious parent, committed to revitalizing their dog’s life by giving them the power, life, and spirit to live fully, as a puppy, adult dog, or mature adult dog.

      Loyal

      The Doglando Parent shows firm and constant support as an advocate for their dog’s total well-being, and makes no compromises to their dog’s level of care, experience of quality, and purpose of existence.

      Empathetic

      The Doglando Parent demonstrates the ability to understand and share the feelings of others.

      Adventurous

      The Doglando Parent embraces new ideas, experiences, and immersive learning opportunities that are full-body and multi-sensory. They foster exploration and all 4 levels of movement (walk, trot, gallop, and double suspension gait).

      Nature Lovers

      The Doglando Parent hugely values the great outdoors which abundantly supplies their dog with natural resources, a rich territory, exposure to other animals (and wildlife), mud, sand, water, sun, trails, and so much more!

      At Doglando, Our Dog Parents Are NOT . . .

      Non-Committed

      Our work is only possible with, and alongside, pet parents who can pledge to take a position on the issue of safety, consistency, and the necessary course of action specific to each dog’s needs. This requires a high level of engagement, involvement, and commitment of time, energy, effort, and sometimes money.

      Non-Relational

      The relationship between you, your dog, and our Play Professors is an investment of positive interactions over a period of time. Our relationship with you and your dog must be of the highest importance to you, as it is to us. This sets precedence over convenience and the fast growth of our business.

      Non-Priority

      Life gets in the way, we get it. The behavioral health and total well-being of your dog takes priority equal to nutrition and medical care. Upholding this priority honors your dog’s life and existence in your family, and confirms your devotion to your dog.

      Occasional

      Doglando is a lifestyle. We are not a drop-off daycare, nor a temporary form of care for short-term convenience. Reflected by the nature of our work, we are your dog’s “home away from home”. We are family, and we are entrusted canine life coaches.

      Non-Believers

      Doglando Parents defend the right of every dog to roam freely, to have the freedom of space, freedom of choice, and freedom to form social relationships in the manner that is most meaningful to each dog. Doglando Parents have strong ethical and moral values in their dog’s right to play and be outdoors, in a way that allows dogs to be dogs in the most natural, least forceful, and kindest way possible.

      What’s Your Dog’s Enrichment Journey?

      Ready to join our family? 

      Tell us about your dog

      and we'll recommend our best programs for you!

      DOGLANDO

      12276 E Colonial Drive

      Orlando, FL 32826

      (407) 574-3160 

      Ⓒ 2021 Doglando. All rights reserved.