The Best Job in the Business – Dog Handler, Lara Hayhurst

The Best Job in the Business – Dog Handler, Lara Hayhurst image

Lara Hayhurst makes her Casa Mañana debut as “Lily St. Regis” in Annie, running November 2-10. 

Lara was first on-stage when she acted and sang in her school choir at age 10. At Act One Theatre School in Pittsburgh, PA, she met her now-husband, Trey. At Casa, we’re suckers for a good love story, and theirs is one of the best! They started dating at just 13, and the rest is history. Lara fell in love again, this time with New York, after moving there to receive her BFA from Pace University and has been there ever since. That’s sixteen years to be exact.

Top: Lara Hayhurst with Ricky and Roxie

Bottom: Lara and her cat, Henry



While this is Lara’s first show at Casa, she has admired the Dome for a long time. “The last time I was in Fort Worth, I was introduced to Joe T Garcia’s salsa and my life changed. I have to confess when I got this job offer my thought process went like this: “Oh, that’s awesome! I love Casa – WAIT, ALL THE SALSA!” We can’t wait to introduce her to Mrs. Renfro’s. 

Lara is also our show’s dog handler, which means wherever “Sandy” is, she is. “We always have our preshow dog call, just like you would in a fight or lift call. It gives Macy, “[Sandy],” and her Annie a chance to connect and I can review any notes from the evening prior.” Macy is one of Bill Berloni’s theatrical animals; she’s trained to be on-stage! “One of the best things about working with Bill Berloni, Macy’s owner and trainer, is that I have my choice of 45 dogs to “borrow” whenever I need a puppy fix.” She adds that she has many favorites, but the top two are Chihuahuas, Ricky and Roxie. The pair play “Bruiser” in Legally Blonde. 

She, however, personally has a different kind of four-legged friend, Henry the cat. “[He] crawled out of a Chinese food dumpster when he was a kitten and followed me across the street and onto the subway platform. He really picked the right mark! 

Follow Lara on Instagram @larahayhurst and Bill Berloni @berlonitheatricalanimals. 

See Annie November 2-10. Get your tickets here: