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Paws and Effect

By Katarina Kovacevic

Portrait by Phyllis Lane

11.20.17

A beguiling labradoodle uses his charm for good.

DON'T LET THE fluff and circumstance fool you. Larry the labradoodle hustles hard to earn his keep. What other dog do you know who has climbed his way to the top of the corporate ladder in his first year of life? Larry did—netting the title of “Director of Happiness” at his owner Jonathan Sacks’ promotional model and event staffing company, PUSH Agency.

Part company cheerleader, part human resources expert, Larry starts his day by greeting each staff member with a friendly sniff and a nudge.

“He’s there to confirm they’re ready for their day and that they’re following PUSH’s seven core company values,” says Sacks. Once he’s made his rounds, Larry recharges with a visit to his own personal dog park. Attached to the PUSH offices, Larry’s Dog Park is covered in Mexican graffiti works from local muralist Lalo Cota, depicting a few of Larry’s favorite things—himself, of course, but also doghouses, fire hydrants and inspirational quotes.

And it’s a good thing Larry’s not afraid of an honest day’s effort, because this pooch is seriously obsessed with self-care. He’s on a grain-free, meat-based paleo diet—with meals oftentimes handmade by his owners—and those rich chocolate curls, “with gray highlights,” adds Sacks, require weekly trips to Puff & Fluff Grooming and Pet Sitting for upkeep. The regular, high-maintenance needs make sense, considering Larry spends his mornings traversing Camelback Mountain and days off glamping in Moab or hiking the Ute Trail in Aspen with his humans.

Larry may play hard, but he works even harder—usually for others. Case in point: Every December, he hosts the PUSH for Love holiday soiree, and this year’s theme, “Hot Chocolate Social,” is a toy drive benefiting Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Valley residents and their four-legged friends are welcome to stop by the PUSH offices Dec. 8 and 15 between 4 and 7pm for a meet-and-greet with Larry and to drop off their donations of new, unwrapped toys for the kids. Bowwow!