Walt Disney used to say “It all started with a mouse.”  For Scott Malvestiti, owner of Dog Park Ready Family Dog Training LLC, it was a dog.  In particular a shy, worried Pit/Sighthound mix named Sergio, he first saw laying in the lobby of the San Francisco SPCA.

In 1997 Scott moved from Southern California back to his native San Francisco.  One of the benefits of moving home was the opportunity to get a dog.  Little did he know that decision would change his life forever.

Sergio was, as one reporter called him, “a leaky bag of nerves”.  Not what Scott was looking for when searching for a dog.  But as they say – Scott didn’t pick Sergio..Sergio picked him.  Even before the final adoption, Scott spent time at the shelter with Sergio, hanging outside his kennel or at the SPCA’s Doggie Daycare.  

Scott even attended one of the first clicker training classes offered at the SPCA with Sergio. It was during this class, while the trainer was using Sergio as the demo dog, he realized this was his dog.

It’s a long story, but in short order…after Sergio’s adoption, Scott focused on getting him trained and socialized.  That meant about 3 hours a day in the neighborhood dog park.  All that time in the park allowed Scott to meet the local dog walkers.  Scott bonded with one particular walker named Ira and he asked Scott to substitute while he was on vacation for a couple of weeks.  

That opportunity led him to start his own dog walking service, and in December of 1997 Canine In The City was born.  With a focus on working with dogs that had “issues” (aka: dogs other dog walkers didn’t want) business flourished.  

Canine In The City initially started with off-leash pack training walks and in the summer of 1998 Canine in the City opened a daycare/training facility called Citydog Playcare, which afforded the opportunity to work with more dogs in a controlled environment.

Sadly, with the real estate rental prices soaring in SF, Citydog Playcare only made it a couple years.  So we shifted and returned to our off-leash roots trading a dark warehouse for the beaches of San Francisco.  An ocean front office with a view!  Not too shabby. 

Canine in the City was blessed and honored to be featured in the Bay Guardian’s Superlist issue and to receive the award for Best Dog Walker in the 2002 SF Weekly’s Best of San Francisco issue.

In 2000 Scott married one of his clients, and in 2006 they started their human family.  In July 2016, Scott and his wife Gina moved their family across the country to Atlanta, in the hopes of finding a better place to raise their children.

Atlanta doesn’t have the same need for dog walking services, so after much consideration Scott decided to return to his roots and focus only on the training aspect, and the Dog Park Ready program was developed    The focus now is on helping families get the dog they dream of, whether it’s on or off a leash.

It’s been 27 years since this ride started. The pack is in its 3rd generation, but Sergio and the original pack, our founding members, are still very much a part of us and what we do.

See?  We aren’t exaggerating when we say it ALL started with dog.