Name: Karen Boyce

Business name: Beastly Thoughts

Opening hours: Any reasonable time

When did you open your business and why?

I OFFICIALLY opened in 2007. I used to do dog training alongside another full-time job, and eventually decided to take my dog training and behavioural courses I had done, and set up my own business.

Why in this location?

I WAS born in Shrewsbury and raised in Oswestry, and I worked in Shrewsbury, Birmingham and Oxfordshire, before I decided to come home.

Here was where I was raised and I love it here – I love the Dee Valley and Ceiriog Valley and the area as a whole down to places like Pant and Llanymynech.

People here are really nice, helpful and friendly which is great.

Tell us about your business

We OFFER dog training, but we offer everything, full spectrum, starting from the day owners get their puppies in their homes. So we offer something called puppy-proofed, starting from the very beginning, then we have a puppy pre-school and then puppy school.

We have an advanced puppy path, so we offer more than just a class – we have clubs and other things.

We can train the average dog you come across, but my other niche is actually reactive dogs. These can be dogs who are scared of people or dogs who are scared of other dogs – for this, we have our reactive to reassured classes.

When I was a child I was always the one training the dogs we had – we had a lot – and I would always teach them to give a paw or give their bone back.

I think a lot of dog trainers have empathy for dogs, but you also have to have empathy for people too.

About 30 years ago, my first German Shepherd bit its best mate, and I thought I didn’t understand dogs at all, despite thinking that I did.

So then I started doing behavioural courses and getting qualified, and by the time I set up my own business I was very experienced.

I love the job I do – I’m not just a dog person, I’m a human person too, and it’s really the owners you have to get through to when you’re training a dog.

What is your proudest moment?

You get the little text or email saying someone’s dog has been good after you’ve trained them which is great.

Last year I was named the Animal Star Awards behaviourist of the year, and I went down to Portsmouth to pick up the award –it’s great to have that after putting in loads of effort, hours and cash as well to get to where you want to with it.

Any strange requests?

I HAVE ended up training cats as well as dogs over the years, because cats are pretty good to train as well and they will come over to you particularly if they like the dog.

Other than that, I can’t really remember too many.