By Greg Olson Jacksonville Journal-Courier, Ill.
WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Two Jacksonville women with a love for dogs have opened "Barks 'n' Biscuits." They say their dog grooming and training business provides a cage-free, force-free and positive reinforcement atmosphere.
Jacksonville Journal-Courier, Ill.
A lifelong love of animals has led two Jacksonville women to open a dog training and grooming business.
Mackenzie Elmore Chism and Dee Goings co-own and co-operate Barks 'n' Biscuits at 704 N. Main St., the former location of Jacksonville Foods.
"The first dog I ever owned was a German shepherd," Chism said. "He was unwanted and unloved by the world. I took him and showed him what true love, understanding and compassion are. I truly got down to his level and tried to understand the world from his perspective. I've always been interested in the psyche and behavioral aspects of dog training."
Chism was a patrolman and Drug Abuse Resistance Education [DARE] officer for several years in Missouri and Illinois.
"As a patrolman, I took a plethora of animal control and stray livestock calls," Chism said. "I've always loved working with all types of animals, but especially dogs."
Chism met Goings during a dog case that Goings was handling.
"I knew that Mackenzie was the only person who could handle this aggressive dog," Goings said. "Mackenzie and I have clicked ever since and decided about a year ago to open a dog training business together."
Goings holds several certificates from professional dog training organizations and previously ran a "doggie day care" in Jacksonville.
"I love to take a dog who is completely out of sorts and watch them learn to be a dog," Goings said. "One of the most magical things in the world is watching the light come back into a dog's eyes."
In addition to operating Barks 'n' Biscuits, Chism and Goings also run Relentless Animal Rescue, a not-for-profit Jacksonville organization they helped found in 2016.
They are expanding their services from dog training and grooming to include boarding and day care, as well as care for all pets.
Chism and Goings said their business provides a cage-free, force-free and positive reinforcement atmosphere.
Barks 'n' Biscuits also offers a six-week basic obedience course, behavior modification and agility and fly-ball training.
In addition, the new business provides pet transportation to veterinarians, pick up and delivery of pets and pet walking and "poop scooping."