Smilin Dogs was founded in 2000, at first just offering our hiking service. In 2007 we opened our current facility in San Carlos which offers daycare, boarding and chauffeur service.
Mary – General Manager
Mary started working at Smilin Dogs as a hiker in January 2013. She volunteered for a couple of years at the Monterey Bay Aquarium primarily in the Aviary department. Previously she worked in the customer service industry as an assistant restaurant manager, server & bartender but knew her true calling was working with animals. When she is not at work you can find her cooking up some kind of elaborate meal or exploring all of the wonderful Nor Cal hiking trails.
Kira – Assistant Manager
Kira was born and raised in Arizona and moved to California for school and family. She grew up with Timmy, a Jack Russell who she considered her “brother” and has loved dogs ever since. Because she doesn’t currently have her own dog (due to living arrangements), she has to get her “dog fix” at work. She has been working for Smilin Dogs since February of 2013, starting as a daycare handler, than moved up to Team Leader which she worked for a number of years before moving to Oregon for school. She obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Earth Sciences and Geography from the University of Oregon and now is back in the area getting her Masters in Environmental Science at the University of San Francisco.
Ashley – Assistant Manager
Ashley is a bay area native that grew up in San Mateo County. Starting as a daycare handler in 2015, she has worked at Smilin Dogs as a hiker, chauffeur driver, office receptionist, and a team leader. In addition to her work at Smilin Dogs, she is currently working on completing her bachelors in graphic design at San Francisco State University. In her free time you can find her at the beach or park with her Border Collie, Himawari, doodling in her sketchbook or chowing down on her favorite Japanese cuisine.
Konrad – Owner
Since 2000 Konrad Thaler together with Diana Ungersma have built Smilin Dogs.
As an eternal optimist he sees the good in everybody and as an entrepreneur he sees opportunity for growth everywhere. Coming from a small Bavarian village with strong traditions and family values, he is extremely passionate about everything farming, dog and bee related. He has two children and is very involved with their education at Peninsula School, a small progressive school in Menlo Park. He is a visionary and leader but also feels comfortable being taught by others with more experience and wisdom.
Prior to founding Smilin Dogs, Diana spent 12 years working in product management and marketing in Silicon Valley startups. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the California Polytechnic State University. She is the parent of two children. In her spare time, she volunteers as a mentor in entrepreneurship for at-risk high schoolers through BUILD and is Treasurer on the Board of Directors for Athena Academy. She enjoys dancing, yoga and trying to make a round pot on the pottery wheel.