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Hidden Gems: Meet Louma Levin-Harris of Denver Dog Meet Up

Today we’d like to introduce you to Louma Levin-Harris.

Hi Louma, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
Like most Europeans, I didn’t have a family dog growing up & I viewed dogs as pets. In 2014, I moved to the US to be with my husband & forever friend, Max. Contrary to me, Max grew up with dogs and insisted that we get one whenever I was ready… That day came, smack in the middle of pandemic lockdowns in 2020. That is when we met Babka, our forever family member. Our bond grew so quickly and I understood what all the fuss was about!

As a psychiatric service dog, she has helped me see the world in a different way when I needed it most. At the beginning of 2022, the world was opening up a little & we wanted to socialize with Babka more. We also wanted a reason to meet new people since many of our Denver friends were moving out of state!

I couldn’t find a low-effort way to meet up with these people, the Denver dog people… So I created the ‘Denver Dog Meet Up’ Facebook group. We started out going on hikes, to breweries, outdoor markets, dog parks, and pack walks… recently we’ve also started organizing larger events & fundraisers, adoption events, free Q&As, etc.

As the group has grown (now at 1,200 members), it also became a hub for local recommendations (ie vets, groomers, daycare, food supply, etc.). Local businesses started reaching out to become sponsors which have allowed us to throw larger events benefiting our non-profit & rescue community.

It’s been a wild ride,in 8 short months we’ve hosted 25+ events with 500+ people and their fur babies,our last event (Puppy Olympics) ended up in 4 dogs getting adopted that afternoon. We were even listed as one of the top dog meetup groups worth joining on Wag!

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
From the perspective of my endeavor with Denver Dog Meet Up the hardest thing has to motivate people to break their routine, to do something with strangers (not strangers for long!). Social media is a great way to reach people but sometimes I fear that a lot of our members don’t see just how real our community is! One of my jobs is to encourage people to just go for it!

Thankfully our meetups and events have been incredibly friendly and filled with support! All the dogs have been A++ and have made tons of friends and new memories!

This is a bit of a new concept and at the same time the oldest concept in the world – community. Members and sponsors can be skeptical until they see the power it brings forth. Everyone in the ecosystem is lifting each other up: dog parents, local dog professionals & experts, rescues & non-profits… and of course dogs!

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your business?
Denver Dog Meet Up is here for all Denver Dogs & Dog-Parents to meetup, socialize and find support within the community!

The main way to access what we have to offer right now is through our Facebook Group. There you find local dog businesses, venues & non-profits (and exclusive deals) in GUIDE TAB as well as local dog events & meetups to join with your pups in EVENT TAB.

We add value for Denver dogs and Denver dog-parents by providing a safe & moderated platform for everyone to connect in the form of the Facebook Group. Members often ask for help from each other, whether it’d be a recommendation for a dog sitter or vet or for help socializing a puppy or reactive dog and everything in between!
One of my favorite ways the community can connect is through events & meetups. Those precious in-person interactions we have missed so much during the pandemic are back! We encourage group members to put up their own meetups. We also actively promote our local sponsors’ events & put up our own events regularly featuring our sponsors & non-profit partners.
We also put forward our local sponsors in many other different ways. By allowing them to interact with our members on the Facebook Group & post about their businesses but also by sending out biweekly reminders putting forward our GUIDE with their listings which include exclusive discounts & events calendar. We also put local sponsors & non-profit partners in touch with each other which turned out to be an invaluable resource!

I am so proud of having put this concept out there in an authentic way and to keep the momentum going even when my health wavers. I have put energy into the world and it keeps giving back in the form of the best support group ever!

I am grateful for everyone who’s come out and met incredible friends already, who’s supported our local sponsors as well. I am so excited for all the people and dogs who continue to join and benefit from our community!

Is there a quality that you most attribute to your success?
Adaptability, flexibility, and curiosity. Constant learning. Being a connector and a good listener. Staying true to myself.

Pricing:

  • Free for group members
  • Free for non-profit & rescue partners
  • Local sponsorships start at $60/month

Contact Info:

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