A new training center under construction in Richland will offer room to roam for dogs and their owners.
4 Paws DogWorks will be a 17,500-square-foot indoor facility at 2765 Kingsgate Way, not far from the Horn Rapids RV Park but on the other side of Highway 240.
The owner, Tracy Hill of West Richland, hopes to have it open by early June.
She plans to eventually employ 10 to 15 trainers and offer everything from puppy kindergarten classes and basic manners all the way to dog sports, agility training and tracking.
"Don't mistake it for a dog park. We're going to be doing serious training of owners as well as their dogs," Hill said.
Agility and tracking exercises require more space than simply training a dog to sit and not yank you around on the end of a leash, Hill said. Not everyone has the luxury of a huge backyard or the time to drive their pets out into the countryside.
The center also will have two 125-foot by 125-foot fenced outdoor areas, but no kennels.
The idea for an indoor facility has been perking in the back of Hill's mind ever since she began competing in dog sports competitions offered through the Columbia Basin Dog Training Club in Richland.
"It's a passion with me. There's no facility like this on this side of the mountains," Hill said.
Hill also makes homemade dog treats and sells them under the 4 Paws Barkery label at http://fourpawstreats.com.
For more information on the Columbia Basin Dog Training Club, go to www.columbiabasindogtc.org.
-- Loretto J. Hulse: 582-1513; firstname.lastname@example.org