Lactation education

Business Beat: Lactation Expert Helps New Parents

Ask any parent and you’ll soon learn that having a new baby isn’t easy, let alone for new parents.

There is so much to learn about caring for a baby, including making sure they are well nourished. Among the options for feeding a baby is breastfeeding. It sounds simple. In concept it is, but the actual process can be much more difficult.

This is where Kayla Kirk comes in. Owner of K+K Lactation in Boulder City, Kirk is a lactation educator and consultant.

In addition to teaching the basics of breastfeeding, Kirk has a background in psychology and can help people adjust to parenthood.

Kirk said she can help new parents prepare for their baby’s arrival as well as once the baby is born. It helps nursing mothers position themselves correctly and comfortably and latch the baby to the breast.

“I also know about maternal nutrition,” she said. “Usually in those early days a mother doesn’t sleep or eat enough.”

Later, for mothers returning to work, Kirk can help with pumping and bottle-feeding.

She primarily works one-on-one, but also works with Serenity Birth Center in Las Vegas and The Milk Bar, a lactation support group. She also hosted a walk-in session at the Boulder City Library and said she hopes to host more such events in the future.

Kirk said many of her clients only need to see her once to resolve their issues, and usually only during a baby’s first year. She does, however, work with parents for as long as they need help.

“If their breastfeeding issue is complicated, it may take more follow-up to resolve it,” she said.

And because she also provides counseling services, she finds that some families need “that extra support.”

“It just depends on each person’s needs.”

She is also training to become certified in baby massage.

“It’s a good opportunity to bond,” she said, noting that it helps the infant stretch out of their birth position.

Kirk has helped new parents through his education and training process, which began in 2020 but just opened his private practice in June.

She said she was inspired to learn more about lactation after struggling with breastfeeding following the birth of her first child.

Kirk said she knew there was a need for her services in Boulder City so new mothers didn’t have to travel to Henderson or Las Vegas, but she was surprised at how many people came. have contacted her since she opened her practice.

For more information, call Kirk at 702-625-1307 or visit

Jack’s Place has a new owner

Jack Gaal, the founder of Jack’s Place Bar and Grill on Nevada Way, has retired and given the keys to his castle to a new owner, Samantha Thompson. She’s been in charge for about a month now and things are going well, she says.

Thompson rose through the ranks as a bartender at the former Inner Circle Bar, the Oasis, and at Maxx’s before joining Jack’s five years ago. She said Gaal approached her a year ago and told her he intended to retire and give her the property.

“Why me? I ask myself that every day,” Thompson said.

Former owner Gaal had what Thompson calls “a tough few years” with medical issues in his family, COVID-19, and a diagnosis of cancer. Gaal plans to use her retirement to spend time with her family, she said.

Thompson confirmed that the restaurant would not be rebranding and would remain Jack’s. However, she plans to add some of her own flair to the business.

Jack’s Place Bar and Grill recently celebrated its 10th anniversary when Gaal purchased the place in June 2012.

Dam Dog House will open

Boulder City loves its dogs. But sadly, many owners can’t be with their four-legged friends 24 hours a day. Enter the Dam Dog House, a new dog daycare service opening Monday, August 29.

Located at 1656 Boulder City Parkway, the Dam Dog House will provide day care and overnight boarding for the dogs. Plans for dog walking, pet-friendly shuttle services, grooming, and checkups with other companies are in the works.

Owner Allison Shafer says it’s been a dream of hers for 15 years.

“A lot of Boulder City residents take their dogs to dog daycare, but they’re fine in (Las) Vegas doing it. Some people work here in Boulder City, drive their dogs to Henderson, drop them off for a few hours, then pick them up later… There were so many people doing that we said, ‘Why don’t we have one? here ? ?’ said Shafer.

Shafer grew up in Boulder City, moved around a bit, and came back about three years ago. Prior to owning the Dam Dog House, she and her husband turned their home into a dog daycare before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Two of his most valuable “employees” during this time were his dogs, Clark and Maggie. Both are trained to greet other dogs and separate fights, if necessary.

“Clark is my go-to guy…He’ll pay attention to what’s going on around him, and nine times out of ten when we had overly aggressive dogs, Clark would just walk in between them and defuse things,” said Shafer.

One of the biggest things Shafer wants to do with his new daycare is pheromones. Each animal releases chemicals called pheromones which can be received by members of the same species and establish things such as moods.

“A lot of people don’t understand that when a dog is stressed, their pheromones are very stressed, so they put out pheromones that say, ‘Hey, I’m stressed. Other dogs can understand that and be scared too,” she said.

In an attempt to meet this challenge, the Dam Dog House will put all dogs through a temperament testing process, where they will assess their behavior before they can be admitted to daycare.

For more information about the Dam Dog House, visit or call 702-803-3334.

“I am from this region. I want nothing more than to see our canine community grow. If you look at Boulder City, we’re a canine community and we care about our animals,” Shafer said.

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