My name is Dominika Knossalla-Pado, I'm the founder of Dog Meets Baby and mom to 5 year old twins and my fur baby Lola. I've lived in 5 countries, call San Francisco my home.
Before I became a dog trainer - 13 years ago - I worked in finance. Long hours in front of the computer and constant back issues. One day, on the way to the physical therapy, I saw a dog trainer in a park training dogs and it was as if lightning struck me. Suddenly, I knew what I wanted to do in life.
I moved from Europe to San Francisco to attend the Academy for Dog Trainers (called the Harvard of Dog Training), and started blogging for friends and family. My blog became popular and I started working as a foreign media correspondent, in addition to training dogs. This job opened many doors and I got to interview several famous people in the animal world, to name a few, Karen Pryor, Jean Donaldson, Ian Dunbar.
I left sunny California for 2.5 years to live in New York City. It's where I adopted Lola from Animal Haven, a shelter in Manhattan. To handle Lola’s insane amounts of energy, I became a scent detection instructor (K9 Nose Work). I spent many weekends traveling all over the US competing with Lola. It’s when I learnt so much and became passionate about dog body language.
Lola’s predatory reaction to my newborn twins is one of the main reasons why I started Dog Meets Baby. I graduated with honors from the SF SPCA Academy for Dog Trainers in 2008, attended many conferences, courses and workshops with the biggest names in the dog world....and I couldn't find anything about dogs' predatory reaction to newborns. Or an easily accessible, comprehensive and reliable source of information for parents of dogs and very young children. Dog Meets Baby was born in April 2020.
Book written almost entirely during naps!
I am honored to be collaborating with Michelle, an amazing and very experienced dog trainer and mom to 20 month old girl and two dogs, and an Early Childhood Expert. We love working with clients privately, it energizes us and we wanted to share our knowledge as trainers and moms to young children with more people. We wrote this book with the parent in mind: tired, often overwhelmed, not sure what's best. We’ve got you! It's an easy yet very comprehensive read with pictures and illustrations covering every angle of the dog and baby journey. From pregnancy throughout the first moments together to the immobile and mobile developmental phases, this is a guide for it all.
Digital course filmed in the mornings when my kids were in preschool!
Designed to help you prepare your dog for the arrival of your baby, from the comfort of your laptop. We discuss management, training, plans A, B, C and D for when your baby is born and later brought home. Each exercise is filmed and accompanied with a short handout and tips for you and your dog.