Owner Susan Crawford
Manager Mr. William Miller
Dog Boarding, Cat Boarding, Day Care, Training, Frisbee Fields, Hiking, Agility Playground, Camp Packages, Grooming, Pet Taxi
Number of Dog Enclosures
No. of Cat Enclosures - 6
No. of Employees 3 full-time, 2 part-time
Providing thoughtful pet owners with organic, natural pet food products with a holistic pet care and boarding philosophy.
After twenty years of managing a dental office, I felt I was ready for a change. As a child, I’d always loved animals and had the usual collection of cats, dogs, fish, turtles, rabbits, birds, lizards, snails, snakes, and hamsters. As an adult, animals have always played an integral part in my life. I am a top breeder of bullmastiff dogs and have successfully shown my dogs all over the world, winning Best of Breed at the World Show in Copenhagen, Denmark. Under the DOX prefix, I have produced Ch. DOX Fast Freddy, is the all-time top producing sire in the history of the bullmastiff breed. DOX bullmastiffs have won the Canadian National Specialty several times and in the USA, DOX dogs have consistently ranked in the top ten. Additionally, I have worked with children in junior showmanship, put obedience titles on my dogs, and judged at the National Specialty Show.
I had a successful breeding program. I was doing a lot of winning, but there was one thing wrong. I lived in a town that only allowed a family to have two dogs and our dog family was way over that. So I searched to find a more appropriate location for my extended family of pets. My search brought me to LaSalle County and sixteen beautiful acres of trees, meadows, and frontage on the Vermillion River. That lovely property became my home and allowed me to fulfill a lifelong dream and acquire my first horse. In addition to bullmastiff dogs, I am now a breeder of Norwegian Fjord horses under the Sandy Fjord Farm name.
Over the years people would ask me to board their dogs for them. This could be for a week or several months due to a house fire destroying the home etc. When the owner picked up their pet or came to visit they always asked me to write down everything that we were doing because they couldn’t believe the increased levels of energy, vitality, and health they saw in their pets. I told them “We are just taking care of your pet like one of the family”. The pleased owners wanted to continue with our pet management program at home. Word of mouth spread, about what has become known as Boot Camp.
Boot Camp: Our boot camp programs are modeled on the training and conditioning that we developed for our top international show dogs to keep them in shape mentally and physically. We have taken the very same management techniques that we use for our own dogs and developed them like a spa resort for dogs. Our doggy guests come to Boot Camp and enjoy the country environment, dine according to your instructions, or (for those pets ordering our dietary program) eat a healthy natural diet supplemented with produce from our organic garden and get appropriate physical exercise. We treat them just like one of our family.
Starved Rock Pet Resort is a great opportunity for me to share the knowledge and expertise that I have acquired through a life spent with animals. It’s really gratifying to work with the wonderful people that I have had the pleasure of meeting in this business. Animal lovers are the best people. It turns out the pet care business provided the personal and professional change that I was looking for.