"I just get on their level right away," she says. "I mean, I love dogs. To have them walk in every day, I just love it." Because she does, a fact that's obvious to any two- or four-legged creature that comes through the door. So it should be no surprise that puppy love led Showalter to her current role as owner of Yuppie Puppy, as well as Doggie Day Play and a dog-walking service, complete with nearly 60 employees, a job she was born to do. "Well, not really," says Showalter. "I love dogs because they're so loyal and they give you such unconditional love. They are such pure creatures, but I didn't ever have a plan to work with dogs for a living." But in 2006, after talking it over with her husband, Brent, who owns a home-repair service, she decided she didn't want to spend the rest of her working days "doing the office thing," especially with her two sons, now 24 and 20, Dog Collar at home. "I didn't want the commute, I didn't want the stress. I wanted something different," she says. When Showalter learned her dog groomer at the time was retiring, she took a leap of faith and bought the business.
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