A Vacation Getaway For Canines

Linda Dela Cruz
Wednesday - November 04, 2009
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Sandy Van with Lyssa at Tradewinds Pet Suites

Sandy Van wants dogs to be “bowwowed” when they spend some time at Trade Winds Pet Suites, a boarding kennel for dogs with no crates or cages.

“Hopefully, when the dogs come here, they feel like they are on a vacation rather than in a boarding kennel,” says Van about the Waianae facility. “I really like it when the dogs come back after coming here a time or two and they are excited to see me when they come again. Then I know we are doing something right if the dogs are happy to come back.”

Van says there is plenty of room for dogs to roam around.

“There’s an indoor portion of the kennel where the dog can eat and sleep if it likes,” says Van. “And it opens to its own private 25-foot run that is fenced, so the dog can be inside or outside at any time of the day or night.”

In addition to the kennels, there are large play areas.

“I think when you are mixing dogs from different families, it is hard to tell how they would get along, or more importantly, how they might not get along,” she says. “So when we let them go into the play yard, they go by themselves unless they are dogs from the same family. We play with them and spend time with them, and get to know each dog’s personality.”


Owners can bring their dog’s favorite toys, treats and food.

“I also ask the owners to bring a piece of clothing or a blanket that has the owner’s scent on it for the dog,” she says.

Tradewinds Pet Suites is a division of Tradewinds Quarter Horses LLC, as she boards both dogs and horses. A freelance medical writer professionally, one of the challenges Van notes is getting the word out about her boarding business. Recommendations have come from a local veterinarian and her customers, and Van says the Internet is another way people are finding out about her services.

The Waianae resident acknowledges her friends with two and four legs, as well as her family for all their encouragement for the business. Van especially appreciates the support of her three sons Paul, Aaron and Jeremy. She also says her son Jeremy’s girlfriend, Alex Seibel, as well as Tradewinds part-time employee Sunny Kaapana are very helpful.

Her family wouldn’t be complete without her two German shepherds Gabi and Gabi’s son Tradewinds Achilles, Belgian shepherd Lyssa and mini-dachshund Muggsy.

“I’m a dog owner and lover myself,” says Van.

Tradewinds is located at 86-626 Puuhulu Road. For more information, call 696-4900 or log onto www.tradewindsqh.com/pets/.

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