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Click the paw to learn about our various dog walking options in Waltham, Watertown and Belmont. We are professional dog walkers that will ease any guilt you have about Fido not getting enough exercise. 



Click the paw to learn about how to get help from an experienced dog trainer who specializes in positive reinforcement methods. The goal is to help you better understand, communicate with, and live your best life with your dog. Click here to book your first training session today!



Click the paw if you are already a dog walking or training client and need to skip town, let us welcome your dog into our home like one of our own. Availability is very limited. 



Click the paw if you have guilt plus a dog with a great recall? Check out our options for reducing energy levels for your pooch

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In 2003 after meeting at a local dog park, Cara & Gerard founded Active Paws Inc. knowing first-hand how hard it was to organize visits for their dogs when they weren't home.


In 2009, they won Pet Sitter of the Year, the industry’s highest honor awarded by Pet Sitters International and continued to rack up the accolades. They're internationally awarded and come locally recommended. They continued their passion through education and are now a raw dog food nutrition specialist as well as a professional dog trainer. 


To read more about Cara and Gerard, click here.




Active Paws is the best dog walking service you could get. Where I live, there are plenty of other dog walkers, but none that I hear of make me want to change from Active Paws. They know my dog soooo well. They have been able to answer any and ALL of my questions about my dog and his breed, a Toy Poodle. I have been home a number of times (due to illness) when Cara came by to take him on their daily adventure. My dog cries for her like he does for me! He’s as comfortable in her arms as he is in mine (and he won’t get into other people’s arms).

~Monty's owner, Waltham, MA



I have a 12-year-old German Shepard (Sydney) and have been using Active Paws for almost a year now. Cara is so wonderful with Sydney. I work in the healthcare field and my schedule changes frequently. The Active Paws team has always been there for me to help out, sometimes with very little notice. They truly care about the dogs. . . . it’s not just a job.

~Sydney's owner, Waltham, MA


You guys are the BEST! You cared for and loved Brando for the past 9 years like he was your own! Riggins had his first walk today and loved Gerard instantly!! I would and do recommend you to anyone and everyone!

~Brando and now Riggins' owner, Waltham, MA

I am a huge fan of Cara and Gerard. I had a dog walker who charged more, didn’t show up on time, would only stay 7 minutes and not play with my dog the whole time. Both my wife and I occasionally work from home, and when we do we’re usually cooped up in our office. It was then that we noticed that we really weren’t getting the service we expected from our previous dog walker. I had two people tell me that all dog walkers are like that. I liked Cara and Gerard’s attitude and figured I couldn’t do much worse than I was so I took a chance on them. It’s been great.


At least 10 times or so I’ve been home when Gerard comes over. My dog has an absolute blast with him. They always show up, always play hard with my dog, even if it’s 2 degrees outside.


They also keep us up to date with dog-related stuff. Our dog mysteriously started getting a little aggressive over a two-week period. I thought that maybe somebody came into the yard and did something mean to him. When Gerard heard about it he asked if we had changed his food to a higher protein, which I had done to help him with some scratching. It turns out that that can cause aggression. I put him on Solid Gold at the suggestion of Gerard and he’s been back to normal since.

~Koda’s owner, Waltham, MA




PO Box 550156

N. Waltham, MA 02455


Tel:  781-899-7297 (PAWS)


8:00 AM - 9:00 PM

Monday - Friday



Saturday - Sunday


Dog Walking & Training Service Area Maps

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raw dog food specialist

We Care about Your Relationship with Your Dog

It sounds so selfish but the healthier your dog is, the happier we are and you! Let's be honest, it makes us sad to walk an overweight pup that isn't well behaved or at its optimal health. We want to be your pet's coach to a healthier life but that will include coaching you.


Do you love your pup but are sick of them jumping up, pulling on the leash or just want to show off to your neighbors and friends how amazing your dog is with all of their tricks? We can help show you how to build a wonderful relationship with your pooch through positive dog training. From cool tricks to triumph over unwanted behaviors, we use positive reinforcement training methods to bring out the positively best in your dog.



If you are interested in learning more about our dog training or nutrition coaching, please fill out the form below. We look forward to working with you to make a better life for you and your pet. 



dog learning training tricks

From manners to tricks we can help with most issues you may be experiencing. Our training is 100% positive and for dogs of all ages! Interested in a well-behaved dog but don't have the time yourself? We offer day training, board and train or traditional training sessions, click here for all our options. ​

Dog Nutrition Coaching 

how to feed raw dog food

As a certified nutrition specialist, we specialize in helping people learn what is the best nutrition for their pups. Nutrition is the foundation to a healthy life.



We Care about Your Pet's Safety

Your pet's safety is our number one concern and we don't even care if you are a client. In Cara's spare time she helps to spread awareness about pet first aid & CPR by promoting the ProPetHero online certification. This course is the only one online taught by an ER veterinarian who has saved 1,000's of lives and will help you know how to save your pet's life.


One way she accomplishes this is by blogging about pet health and safety. To learn how to get rid of skunk smell after your pooch has been sprayed to what household items we can use to help heal an ailing pet, Cara covers it all in the ProPetHero Blog. Just click here to read through the various safety topics Cara covers. 



Why should I use Active Paws as my pet care provider?


Active Paws provides a professional level of care for your pets. Often people turn to family, friends or apps to find someone to walk their dogs. Without proper training and education about dog behavior, when an issue occurs, we know how to react.  Active Paws is reliable, trustworthy, flexible and puts your pets needs as our top priority. We have been operating as a professional pet care service since October 2003, and to be honest, we know what we're doing and we'll always show up.

What areas does Active Paws cover?


Active Paws services the towns of Watertown, Waltham, and Belmont, Massachusetts. We will consider neighboring areas for coverage but do our best to reduce distance from our home to yours for safety and to keep our carbon footprint low.

Will my dog be walked by the same person every day?

Active Paws will assign a professional dog walker to your dog providing you have Monday-Friday walks. If you use multiple services (i.e., walks on varying days and hikes on others), you will most likely have two assigned staff members taking care of your pet.

Active Paws strives for continuity for the benefit of both your pet and our pet care specialists, as it is our experience that keeping your animal in the care of the same person/people provides for a more comfortable visit and walking experience for both dog and walker as both learn each other's nuances, tricks, and behaviors. However, in the event of emergencies, sick or vacation days, Active Paws reserves the right to send a replacement pet care specialist to your home. You can rest assured knowing that all Active Paws employees are subjected to background checks, certified in Pet CPR & 1st Aid and are trained on our pet care standards before they are allowed to care for client animals without supervision. 

Are you insured and bonded?


Yes, we are insured and bonded by Mourer-Foster Insurance Agency. Our policy is with The Hartford Insurance Company, Active Paws is insured as an S corporation and we carry worker's compensation insurance. You're protected from us, and we're protected from you :)

Do you have references?

Active Paws has a plethora of excellent references ranging from clients as far back as 14 years ago. You can also peruse our client testimonials page on this website or feel free to ask your neighbor about us. We can also provide with contacts, just drop us a line.

What does Active Paws need from me before services can start?

We ask that you have two copies of your house/apartment keys ready for us, one for the pet care specialist to use and the other for emergency backup. Please also have all of your information filled out in our client portal section of the Time To Pet Software that we use.

Can I meet with you before I hire Active Paws?

​​Absolutely; we actually require that you meet with us before any services are rendered to ensure that your pet is the right fit for Active Paws and that Active Paws is the right fit for your pet!

How will I know for sure that you have come to visit my animal as scheduled?


After all daily services, Active Paws leaves a note, often with a picture through our pet sitting software letting you know about the adventures (and bathroom behaviors) of the day. For dogs boarding with us, we send updates with pictures/videos at least once a day, feel free to check in.

What health requirements do you have in order to care for my animal?

Active Paws requires all animals to be vetted at least annually and to be up to date with legally required vaccinations. Dogs must also be licensed within the town where they reside as many Animal Control Officers keep a tight leash on this law. Walking an unlicensed dog may result in our walkers receiving a fine which will be passed on to you, the owner. Dogs must also be spayed and/or neutered to attend off-leash playgroups.

Do you board dogs?

Yes, we do offer boarding services for our current dog walking or training clients based on our availability. Unlike dog walking, boarding is not always available as we have limited space. If care for your pet starts or finishes before or after 2 pm, then you will receive a half-day charge for that calendar day. Example: You have Toby picked up at 3 PM on Friday, and you return at 11 AM on Sunday. You would be charged a half day for Friday, a full day for Saturday, and a half day for Sunday. Sundays are the same as any day at Active Paws.

I'm visiting family/going on a tropical vacation/won't be home for a major holiday. Can Active Paws take care of my pet? Do you charge more for major holidays?


Bookings are a first come, first serve basis for pet sitting over a major holiday. There is a $10 surcharge on the normal prices for all services on major holidays. During other holidays, Active Paws operates as usual and if the holiday falls during the week, we will continue service (hikes, regular walks) unless you indicate otherwise.

I decided to play hooky from work today so I won't need my walker! What is your cancellation policy?

We have an entire section on our website devoted to our policies organized by service. We pride ourselves on being understanding that “life happens,” but we ask that you also understand that we are a business and so have policies in place to prevent excessive last-minute cancellations. Our policies also allow us to hire, retain and pay fair wages to our excellent staff. 

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