About Us

About Annie Lever

I grew up in Michigan with great lakes chocked full of fish, crisp clean fresh air and a rustic cabin nestled among the white birch and majestic pine trees that seemed to reach the big blue sky. As a child it came as no surprise that I was drawn to the beauty of the great outdoors. When I was young, my dad found a Newfoundland black puppy in a city park that we took home and named Mr. Ballenger. Instantly I was smitten.

I would dash home from school at the sound of the bell to chase and tumble with my Mr. B. At night he would even curl up with me under my sheets. He made me feel safe. He was more than just a dog, but rather a friend who created feelings of security and comfort whenever I needed him.

dog running

Over 20 years of running a successful business has given me the opportunity to meet people with amazing stories plus the ability to have a job where I enjoy daily the company of some of the most personable animals out there. In 1994, I followed my childhood passion and created Dog Gone Fitness. I’ve had the opportunity to love, walk, nurture, and home care over 495 dogs of every size, breed, temperament and personality. I love that every day I am invited to share my love of outdoors with these precious animals.

My mother used to tell me that happiness is like making a cake. It’s a precise combination of love, humility, gratitude, and respect along with the values and traditions of being of service to others. This has become my mantra for living a wonderful life.

dog

Bob grew up in Oregon and learned that hard work can and will pay off for you. His grandparents owned a berry farm and he spent many long hours picking berries and pulling weeds! Bob grew up surrounded by pets. In his youth he had dogs, rabbits, ferret, turtles, tortoises, ducks, rats, mice, gerbils, lizards, guinea pigs, and 14 tanks of tropical fish. His mom was a good sport!  

During his spare time, Bob enjoys any activity outdoors—fishing, scuba diving, running, swimming, biking, and kayaking. He has competed in many races and finishing the Hawaii Ironman Triathlon is one of his more memorable events. The man does not sit still! His dream is to fish all over the world but for now he is satisfied with west coast fishing trips, or cheering on his daughters in their chosen activities. Bob earned his MBA from Portland State University before moving to California. Before joining me Bob was the owner and operator of two successful construction companies. He says that he will take dogs over employees any day.

Bob and I are proud of our community and do all we can to ensure it continues to thrive. Every Christmas we adopt a family through our church and I served 4 years on the Board of Directors of the Barrington Dog Park, a great place to let the dogs run around and go crazy. Bob and I donate often to their cause as well as the West LA Animal Shelter.

Our Staff

Candice Clark

Hiking with dogs allows me to combine three loves; nature, canines, and exercise. It all began five years ago when Dog Gone Fitness offered me a position to join the team, spending my mornings with our pack has been an amazing adventure ever since! In case it’s not obvious, I love what I do! Applying my Masters degree in Psychology and 12 years of motherhood, I approach working with dogs like I do humans. My objective is to allow pups to maintain their unique nature while modifying unacceptable behaviors (i.e. disobedience and any poor social skills). Preferring off leash excursions, I enjoy observing dogs running free and playing. Our outings give dogs the invaluable opportunity to be part of a pack for a few hours. Sniffing, climbing, running, getting positive enforcement, and cuddling is the heart of our good mornings.

Katie

Katie is an East Coast native and moved to LA in January of 2020 to follow her passion in music. Growing up with huskies she had no choice but to be active with her pups and it grew her love for the outdoors and hiking with dogs. All four years of college she worked in Boston as a dog walker and sitter for a local company. When she moved home in 2016 after receiving her MBA at Endicott, she opened her own pet service business and had clients all over Connecticut. She has over 10 years experience working with animals of all breeds and temperaments. It was only natural that moving to the west coast that she would look for a job within the pet industry. After researching the dog walking community in LA she found Dog Gone Fitness and knew that the business Annie and Bob have established for over 25 years would be the perfect fit for her. She joined the Dog Gone Fitness team in February and could not be happier to be a part of such a wonderful team of dog lovers. She's hard to miss with her green Volkswagen convertible filled with dogs driving down Sunset Boulevard!

Paula

My name is Paula, and I have over 5 years of professional experience with dogs. I started as a private walker for people around my neighborhood, and then advanced to work in a company doing dog hikes, dog training, daycare and boarding services. I worked along with a dog behaviorist who taught me a lot about the world of canine psychology and dog training.Hiking is one of the things that I love most doing with dogs, because they show how to be organized in a group, and it is a moment that I can teach leadership and confidence at the same time.I'm originally from Brazil and I've always been in love with dogs and cats. My parents had a shelter for dogs and cats rescued from the streets, abandoned and mistreated, and I was the one responsible for taking care of them and sending to responsible and loving homes.

Sunny

Dog Handler/Walker since 2019. Proud pawrent of Zoey who goes on all the hikes! Currently attending Santa Monica College. Always looking forward to making new furiends!

Darius

Darius has always had an affinity with dogs and DNA testing revealed his ancestors to be among the first to breed dogs from wolves in the Ural mountains before the previous ice age. Darius has been with Dog Gone Fitness for several years and is stoked to be a part of a company that truly cares for the animals health at all levels. He says “Dogs are so full of love, they want to give it and receive it. The hiking experience involves an important social aspect for the dogs and I enjoy seeing them grow together”.  

Evan

Evan grew up with dogs and has loved being around animals all his life. He enjoys staying active and spending time outdoors. Taking dogs out hiking really is the best of both worlds. He gets to spend time with animals, and get great exercise every day!

Amanda

Amanda is an Honors graduate of Animal Behavior College as a Certified Dog Trainer. She is certified as a Canine Good Citizen Evaluator also. With well over 10 years of personal pet care experience along with many different jobs in the animal field, Amanda is sure to give your pets all the love and well deserved attention they could ever want.

Kali

I moved to LA from New York 6 years ago and have always worked in the fast paced world of fashion and events. Through that crazy journey I learned one thing is for sure: I much prefer dogs over people! The dogs get SO excited when they see me arrive every morning, but little do they know they brighten my day just as much (plus they are great listeners when I want to chat). As Mark Twain once said, "The more I learn about people, the more I love my dog,"....and well, he's not far off! 
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