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The animal lover behind Albion Bark Lodge

Albion Bark Lodge is the dream come true for Sarah.  For many years Sarah has dreamed of owning a haven for pets.  A property designed solely for dogs and where their owners could have 100% confidence in the care and love their pet will receive during their stay at Albion Bark Lodge. Sarah has four dogs and two rescue cats, all very spoilt and loved members of the family.  As animal lovers, Sarah and the Albion Bark Lodge team understands and appreciates the trust pet owners place on them to care for their fur-family as if they were in their own home. Albion Bark Lodge began as a favour I was doing for friends and family (minding their dogs and cats and walking their dogs while they were away) which spread to friends of friends and work colleagues as word got around, then complete strangers who had heard from a third party about my services.


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A great bonus for me was that it was a way for me to have more dogs and cats around all the time, as my darling husband put a limit on the number of pets we have – so you know, its six! Four dogs and two rescue cats. All terribly spoiled and doted on.   Before I knew it, pet lovers had heard and I was so busy I was turning people away.  Fast forward to March 2020 and COVID-19 hit.  I was working from home all day every day with mine and visiting dogs and cats as my constant companions – my new office colleagues.  I was in heaven.  It didn’t take me long to realise that I was happier, calmer, contented and more energised – and so were my fur-people.  This was my light bulb or ah-hah moment.  This is what I am meant to be doing with my life.

So I got to work looking for the right property – and bingo, 7 Illawarra Highway, Albion Park Rail came up.  Thankfully everything fell into place nicely and 3 months later we moved in.  We’ve done a lot of work and are continuing with upgrades to the property to meet our vision of what Albion Bark Lodge will be.  Large grassed yards with lovely shady trees, plenty to sniff and mark territory, a sand pit to dig in, a wading pool for hot days, agility equipment for fun activities and games, large open covered areas for wet days, with lots of indoor play time and puzzle games.

I love all animals, especially dogs and cats.  Dogs are my love language, and I’ve been told I speak ‘dog’ fluently.  I know how precious your dog is to you and I understand the anxiety you get at the thought of leaving your dog  with someone else.  This is exactly the reason Albion Bark Lodge came to be.  No one can mind my fur-people like me!  My husband and I don’t take long holidays because I could never find anywhere where I felt comfortable leaving my pets and I thought I couldn’t be the only owner who felt this way.  I didn’t want to leave my fur-people in a small enclosure all day, with limited outside breaks.  I have an escape artist too, so I also needed to feel he would be in a very secure facility. I wanted the facility to be small enough so my timid girls wouldn’t be overwhelmed but large enough for good socialisation and stimulation every day.  But most important to me was the connection my fur-people have with the team minding them.  Then I could relax knowing my pets are cared for properly.

I love to meet new dogs, I love to walk the dogs, it’s such a laugh, the way they sniff everything so intently.  I let them take their time, the walk is about them, not me.  One of the perks of being around dogs all day is learning each of their personalities (they all have their own, every pet owner will agree).  I can’t find the words to tell you how much joy I feel from learning what they love and giving it to them – a scratch on the belly, chasing a ball, digging in the dirt, chasing birds, running and jumping through the waves at the beach.  Any pet in my care will have the most fun and loving days.

Albion Bark Lodge is here and it’s my dream come true!

Sarah x


Hi, this is Teddy and I’m Teddy’s Mum! As you may be able to tell Teddy our adorable Pug is much loved and a very big part of our family. Until we met Sarah we hadn’t ever left Teddy with anyone as we just couldn’t be sure he was going to be given the same love and attention that he gets from his own family. I’m so happy to say that Teddy is always so excited to see ‘Aunty’ Sarah and we are always comfortable leaving knowing he is treated with the same kindness and love that he gets at home. We wouldn’t trust anyone else to take care of our beloved Ted so I have no hesitation recommending Sarah and Dog Utopia to anyone who wants the comfort of knowing their fur baby is being well cared for whilst you are away.
Karen Simpson



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