Your name: Shannon Ross
Your dog’s name: Rishi, 3 years old
How did Rishi come into your life?
After moving to Austin, I was inspired by the dog-friendly scene. The shops, restaurants, and even the offices are dog friendly here. It’s created an entire culture and community of people that really encouraged me to start looking for a dog of my own. I did a lot of research and landed on a goldendoodle—the perfect mix of cuddly and crazy without all the hair!
The day we met it was love at first sight. Rishi had a big personality even as a puppy he demanded attention. He definitely tips the scale toward crazy. But in the best possible way.
What is your favorite thing about Rishi?
He’s the yin to my yang. Laid back and low-key is how I tend to approach things. But Rishi is literally all in on just about everything. Baths, cats, people, carrots, and most vegetables will get his tail wagging!
What is your favorite thing to do together?
Long walks on the beach. No joke! We love our walks together. Zilker park is one of our favorite spots to sniff out.
Rishi gets to fetch the ball and say hello to every person we pass. He loves people! I’ve met so many of my friends through Rishi. At the park, he’s a big connector. Always belly up, meeting new people and hoping for a belly rub!
What is the weirdest thing Rishi does?
He loves feet! I call it a foot fetish. But they’re really little love bites he gives when he wants my attention.
What is the naughtiest thing Rishi has ever done?
Rishi definitely has a bad boy bone. He can be mischievous. Knows the rules but loves to bend them. You always know when he’s about to have one of his Wild West moments because he locks eyes with you just before does!
His brother lives nearby and we joke that even though Rishi is younger, he’s definitely the bad influence.
If Rishi was a person (living or dead) who would he be?
Steve-O, definitely. He’s a total stunt man—insanely hilarious, a little bit goofy, and a whole lot of heart!
How was Springer born?
On a long road trip! We quickly realized the challenges of keeping our family dog hydrated along the way. Outside of water bottles and bulky dog bowls, it seemed like there weren’t a lot of options.
So we created a travel bottle that blended the best of the two. Part dog water bottle, part dog bowl, none of the messy spills or overflow. We started thinking about dog parents and how a lot of us love our dogs and good design equally.
People want their pet gear to be as cool and attractive as their own. We spent hours scouring the web for well-made pet gear that looked good. And no brand was really fitting those needs.
So we saw a gap to create Springer and a range of products that were beautiful, smart and functional. Because we’re the ones who have to look at it!
What is missing from the pet gear space today?
Innovation. A lot of products in the pet space were designed a long time ago. Not much has changed, including style. Springer aims to revolutionize pet products based on the utility of today.
And we’re doing it in a way that keeps dogs and their people in mind. Think function meets form. Our pet gear is stylish for all the right reasons.
What do you hope Springer can do for pets and their people?
I want to create a more dog-friendly future. My hope is that Springer inspires people to spend more time with their dogs and give them the products to do it.
Dogs make life better. Full stop.
They’re the calming energy and comedic relief when we need it. But most of all they connect people and create community. People put down their phones and talk to each other when dogs are around and that’s what we want to encourage. More dogs. Less division!