Chelle has been great in offering some private encouragement as I tackle this in increments.
There are a range of options available with the profiles but in general:
You can put up a personal picture there of yourself and/or dogs, have a mini weblog for your dogs, have a favourite quote highlighted, add friends and have a network just as you would with someplace like MySpace, use chat just amongst other board members, people can leave comments, etc.
The documentation for a lot of this is pretty weak though -- so I will probably create a forum where people can share ideas about managing their profiles -- as I won't give guidance on using the profiles! Too much to do already. Eeveryone will have a basic profile anyway so you can choose to use the enhanced Personal Page or not yourself.