The Owner, Mountain Pets, Our Dogs

The Owner



Thank you for your interest in learning more about me and Mountain Pets. When you 'contact us', you are communicating directly with me as the business owner and your professional pet sitter.
Pet Sitting Beginnings
The short story of how I started Mountain Pets began following a rewarding 30-year career with a federal wildlife conservation agency. It had become time to formalize what I loved to do  most...care for and work with animals and build trusting relationships with their owners. It is indeed a part-time labor of love for me. I began dog boarding in 2017 as a side job and established a full-service pet sitting business two years later to include farm and sitting in the State College area in Pennsylvania. Mountain Pets is the culmination of the breadth of my 30 plus years of experience, knowledge, training and love I have for a variety of animals. While my intent is to "keep it small", I am fully engaged in continued learning and building a professional pet sitting option for farm and pet owners throughout Centre County.
Horse Background
Animals, both domestic and wild, have been a large part of my life since childhood. I spent a lot of time as a child exploring nature and started riding horses at the age of 7. As a young teenager, I volunteered for a few years at a large Appaloosa breeding and boarding horse farm (they also had cows and sheep). I learned to ride, feed, turn out, and breed horses, and most importantly, how to muck a stall. I've been an Appaloosa girl ever since, owning my first at age 13 and my second at age 27. I owned both horses for their entire lives and moved them around with me across the country. At times I boarded and worked for reduced board and at times I kept them with me at my home and managed their daily care. I probably learned the most about horses as my own two began to fail due to old age. My first horse, I was unable to bring back from unexplainable rear foundering, With my second horse, I spent the last five years of his life treating and rehabilitating him from a broken leg. One of the most exhilarating experiences of my life was cantering on the one whom I brought back from a broken leg. My Appaloosa chapter of those two closed in 2019, as well as my formal career in wildlife conservation, and I am now focused on leveraging my knowledge, skills and abilities in caring for other people's dogs and farm animals.
Dog Background
My grandmother bred cocker spaniels and my parents instilled in me that life without a dog in the house is not an option. As a young adult, I researched dog breeds and decided that I had a strong interest in Australian Shepherds I got my first puppy at age 24, raised three litters of puppies with her and am on my forth Aussie now. Since I began boarding dogs in 2017, I've had the fortune of getting to know the unique characteristics of many dog breeds and have boarded more than 100 individual dogs, with a lot of them repeat customers. I even have a few boarding clients from Virginia who have stayed with my services through my move to Pennsylvania in 2019.
Below are a few more details about my qualifications. I am happy to provide personal and/or client references on request. Thank you for your time.
Pet Sitting Certifications                         
Professional Memberships
Other Relevant Course Work and O-T-J Training
  • Basic Wildlife Rehabilitation
  • Husbandry and research of captive cranes, bald eagles, condors, and quail
  • Chicken flock manager, USFWS
  • Veterinary technician duties, USFWS
  • Parlor milker, Dairy Farm
Personal Experience
  • 40 years of horse ownership and horse farm management
  • 30 years of owning and breeding Australian Shepherds
  • 30 years of cat ownership
  • 5 years of freshwater aquariums, pet birds and rabbits​​
Owner and Dogs
Walking Dogs
Scenic Chihuaha
Haley Onlooking

Mountain Pets

Mountain Pets physical location is our home and is located on 200-acres within the beautiful Bald Eagle Valley in Port Matilda, Pennsylvania. We serve clients in the State College area and throughout Centre County.

A pet sitting business that prides itself in offering a private, kennel-free dog boarding experience as well as conscientious and professional farm and pet sitting care at your own farm and home. A combination of services not commonly found. Services include hobby farm animal care at your farm, private dog boarding at Mountain Pets and pet care in your home. We serve dogs, cats, all hoof stock including horses, cows and goats, chickens, caged small mammals, birds and reptiles, and aquariums. 

The amenities on our 200 acre property really make this a dog paradise and offers your dog a pet vacation while you are on vacation or away on a trip. We board no more than 2-3 dog clients at a time and do not have any kennels/cages on the property. Boarded dogs are integrated into our home and routine and are treated just like our own house dogs. In addition to a 1-1/2-mile lane, we maintain hiking paths throughout the property for dog walks and have a pond and small creeks running through for swimming or cooling off on those hot summer days.

Mountain Pets is licensed with the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement as a boarding kennel, License # 17360, K Class BK1. Kennel licenses are required by anyone who boards at least 26 dogs per calendar year for compensation. As a licensed boarding kennel (their term), the Bureau performs 3 unannounced inspections per year.

Mountain Pets holds general liability insurance by a pet sitting insurance company and includes care, custody and control coverage. Care, Custody or Control (CCC) Coverage is the key ingredient to insuring a pet sitter. This provides coverage for the client's pets and personal property in the pet sitters care, custody or control - which includes pets while in transport in a vehicle, pet taxi and other means. We are also bonded to provide you with peace of mind while you are granting me home and farm access. Proof of clear criminal background checks with the FBI and state of Pennsylvania are maintained and available on request.

Mountain Pets was founded as an LLC in April 2019 and moved from Virginia to Pennsylvania in November 2019. The physical location for the business is our residence, so we are not open to the public except by appointment for dog boarding clients. Joanna Taylor is the owner and operates the business as a solo professional pet sitter with no additional staff.

Our Dogs

If your dog comes to Mountain Pets for overnight boarding, daycare or a play date, he or she will be engaging with and probably become good buds with our two Australian Shepherds. I couldn't do what I do without their help!



Hi. I get along great with other dogs and assume the role of silent leader for guest dogs. I am well socialized and give way when needed to keep peace and harmony in the household. I'm great friends with Toby and will try to get other dogs to play with me.


  • Australian Shepherd

  • Spayed female

  • 9 years old

  • 52 pounds.

  • Gets along well with others

  • Had her since she was a puppy




Hey there. I joined Mountain Pets last year and absolutely love this place and Gabby too. I get along great with other dogs and assume the role of Gabby's assistant. I'm quite the outdoors fella and love chasing squirrels. 


  • Mini Australian Shepherd

  • Neutered male

  • 4 years old

  • 22 pounds

  • Gets along well with others

  • Loves chewing on toys.

  • Adopted from a rescue in 2020



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