→ Certified Canine Massage Therapist
→ Certified Canine Kinesiology Taping Practitioner
→ Certified Canine Nutrition Coach
→ Certified Canine & Equine Aromatherapist
→ Certified Canine Herbalist
→ Most recently completed the Pet Nutrition Coach Certification with the North American Veterinary Community
→ Diet formulator to NRC standards
→ Nutrition & medical consultant for various rescue groups
→ Selected by Dogly.com to be a Wellness Advocate
→ Full list of certifications & credentials at the bottom of this page
I’m Alicia, a holistic health care professional and dog mom who is passionate about canine nutrition and complementary holistic care including massage, aromatherapy, and herbs. My goal is to give dog parents tools and resources to be proactive and feel reassured in their dog’s health journey.
I’ve been working with dogs for over a decade in various ways from shelter director to vet assistant and along the way adopted my own dogs. My husband and I have four dogs total – Izzy, Hudson, Mylah and Jayne – and the occasional foster dog graces our house, too. When Mylah was 10 months-old she was diagnosed with diabetes. This changed my entire life and is the reason I ended up starting my own business.
Mylah taught me to be proactive and not reactive when it comes to a dog’s health and wellness. If we can be proactive in our dog’s health journey we can avoid a health crisis and being reactive as a result.
That’s why I took my dog’s health into my own hands. I began taking courses, reading books, and becoming certified in order to help my dogs live better. I started feeding my dogs a raw diet in 2012 and began making homemade recipes in 2014. My experience with my own dog’s nutrition and dietary needs paired with ongoing education in nutrition and holistic modalities has shaped my work today that I’m now able to share with you.
As an independent canine nutritionist and diet formulator, I approach food from the lens of science-based nutritional therapy. Whether a client is a healthy adult dog or has a diagnosis like diabetes, nutrition from a therapeutic and functional standpoint for the individual dog is my focus. Nutrition holds a foundation for wellness and shapes my work as an innate naturopath who wants to see all beings thrive and live dis-ease free. My work as a canine massage therapist, animal aromatherapist and herbalist encompasses this philosophy as well.
My goal is to help you help your dog thrive so your lives can improve for the better. I know first hand how stressful it is to watch your dog having issues day in and day out. From constant itching and scratching to uncontrolled blood sugar, I’m here to help. I’ve successfully helped clients get back to living with a happy and thriving dog. I’ve worked with pet parents all over the United States and across the world. Helping pet parents as far as South Africa and India!
Resources & Services I Provide:
I specialize in diabetic dogs, dogs with food sensitivities, seniors, and proactive adult dog care:
- Nutrition counseling, creating custom recipes specific to your dog’s needs formulated to NRC standards
- Custom aromatherapy products and counseling for use with a specific medical condition
- Canine bodywork and massage services
Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself
My background and training in animal welfare, nutrition, and holistic modalities are diverse and allows me to approach holistic pet wellness and parenting from an integrative standpoint. In addition to my pursued education in the fields of animal nutrition, bodywork, aromatherapy, herbs, and energy work, I have spent countless hours researching and reading on these topics I am so passionate about. I am a lifelong and continued student; there is not a day I don’t spend some of my time in a virtual classroom or reading a book learning more about these subjects I am so passionate about.
- Pet Nutrition Coach Certification, North American Veterinary Community
- Certified Animal Aromatherapist, National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy
- Certified Canine Myo-manipulative Functional Therapist (massage)
- Canine Kinesiology Taping Practitioner
- Certified Acute Canine Herbalist
- Usui Animal Reiki Master
Completed Continuing Education Courses
- Practical Herbalism for Common Canine Conditions
- Canine Diet Formulation Tutorial
- Nutrition & Herbs for Canine Conditions
- Animal Emergency Course
- Dog CPR, First Aid & Safety
- How Food Can Affect Health Issues
- SIU Companion Animal Nutrition Diploma – accepted and will begin courses in Fall 2020
- Canine Diet Formulation Certificate
- Lewis University, Master’s Organizational Leadership, 2014
- Drake University, Dual Bachelor’s Degree, 2008
From left to right: Izzy, Mylah, Meatball (lying down), Jayne (sitting on Meatball), & Hudson
I call Izzy my ‘best girl’ because she is my best friend and the minute I laid eyes on her I knew we were meant to be together. I can’t even begin to count how many ways she has changed my life. I got Izzy right after college at 22 years old and we have been through so much together. My first city apartment, breakups, roommates, family deaths, celebrations – she has always been there. Izzy is 11 years old, but basically going on one year old; she is a giant puppy at heart! She also loves to be in nature and at the lake. She is my adventure dog and soul mate.
My middle kid, Hudson: big, goofy and lovable. The moment I met eyes with Hudson I knew he was a dog I wouldn’t be able to live without. Hudson came from a puppy mill, was brought to a pet store and purchased at the pet store as a “bullador” at three months old. His owners had a lot of young kids and he wasn’t mixing well with them so they were going to either euthanize him or give him up. They claimed Hudson was ‘unpredictable’. Well, he is the most predictable dog I know, a dog that thrives from routine and familiarity. Hudson is a big lug, not the brightest, but would protect me and his sisters from anything. Hudson is 10 years old.
Mylah is our diabetic baby and the tiniest little pittie type dog I’ve ever met. I rescued Mylah’s mom and seven siblings who were confiscated from a dogfighting and breeding operation and were going to be euthanized due to space at animal control. Mylah and her siblings were only four weeks old when I rescued them. Mylah was the runt of the litter and I fell in love with her and adopted her. She was diagnosed with diabetes at 10 months old and that changed my life. She is now 9 years old (!!). Over the course of her life, she was also diagnosed with protein-losing nephropathy, inflammatory bowel disease, and pancreatic enzyme insufficiency. What has kept Mylah thriving and living her life? Her diet. She is the reason I began formulating balanced and complete homemade dog food and the proof has been in her longevity and thriving. I am grateful for the journey she has taken me on!
My husband and I swore we would never adopt another puppy… and then along came Jayne. Funny how that happens! I met Jayne at Chicago Animal Control when I went to do transport dogs to rescue. Jayne was a last-minute addition to the transport. We believe she was hit by a car – she was brought in as a stray with her right hind leg dangling from her body. The rescue tried to fix her leg but the surgery didn’t work so it was amputated. We were asked to foster Jayne after her first surgery because of my medical care experience. My husband and I both knew she was never leaving once we began fostering her. She is almost 2 years old and living the good life as a tripod, she is super fast and gets around great! She receives regular massage and bodywork therapy from me as well as kinesiology treatments to keep her active and inflammation-free.
Did I EVER think I would have a dog named Meatball? Nope! But things just turned out that way 😉 Meatball is also a three-legged dog and recently had his entire right hip replaced. He was rescued back in February 2019 with a horribly deformed front limb that caused him a lot of pain. He didn’t even know how to walk. Once the leg was amputated it was discovered he had very bad hip dysplasia so he underwent a total hip replacement. We fostered him, taught him to walk, and fell in love. He is only 1.3 years old! He is THE sweetest dog and is so good to his older siblings. He is undergoing rehabilitation currently and I practice massage and bodywork 2x a week on him. He also receives kinesiology treatments AND I set up an in-home rehab area for him to practice his therapeutic exercises weekly when he is not at his rehabilitation appointments.