Shawn Kay’s love of animals began as a child in Los Angeles, CA, where she grew up with a menagerie of pets including dogs, cats, a rabbit, a parrot, and a rat. After working in the entertainment industry for 15 years, Shawn made the decision to follow her childhood dream of working with animals.
Shawn’s animal career began not with dogs, but with elephants as a caregiver at The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee. Working with these magnificent creatures gave her a renewed sense of purpose and solidified her life’s mission to rescue, champion, and protect all animals.
Although elephant protection and conservation is still a passion, Shawn now enjoys working with dogs professionally. Since her time at the Sanctuary, she has worked as a veterinary technician, professional dog-walker, pet-sitter, canine massage therapist, and trainer. Her interest in dog behavior became a passion after she experienced the joys and challenges of living with four rescued dogs of her own, each with unique behavior issues.
For the past 10 years, Shawn has devoted herself to studying dog behavior and positive training by reading books and attending seminars by the best trainers and behaviorists in the field—Dr. Patricia McConnell, Dr. Ian Dunbar, Karen Pryor, Trish King, Jean Donaldson and more. Interested only in positive training methods, Shawn interned with like-minded trainers and soon began teaching classes and private lessons. She attends conferences and seminars regularly and is a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT).
In 2011, Shawn graduated from the prestigious Karen Pryor Academy for Animal Training & Behavior (KPA) and became a Certified Training Partner (CTP). She is an AKC CGC evaluator. She remains passionate about animal welfare, supporting numerous non-profit groups and volunteering at local shelters. Shawn lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband, her three dogs and three cats.
Credentials and Memberships
KPA-CTP (Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner)
AKC CGC Evaluator
APDT (Association of Pet Dog Trainers)