EMPLOYEES AND THEIR DOGS – Shannon and Her Dog Max

BEST Christmas Present EVER!

Adding a new pet to any home requires careful consideration to choose the right fit for your family. Pets are a long-term commitment oftentimes of 15+ years. They are also a big financial responsibility; needing quality food, treats, vet visits, toys, a comfy bed, training, grooming, and a lot more.

Getting a new pet requires preparation and unified agreement of everyone involved. Pets give us so much unconditional love and they depend on us financially and emotionally throughout their entire lives. If you want to surprise a loved one who is an animal lover with an awesome gift, then a NEW PET is the BEST present ever!!! (But only if that person is responsible and ready for the commitment.)

Shannon and her older sister received that special surprise one Christmas morning when they opened a gift that had dog treats inside. They did not have a dog, so you can imagine their screams of excitement and tears of joy when they realized what that meant! Their parents told them they would be going to the shelter to pick out a new rescue puppy. Shannon got to pick out her very first dog when she was 12 years old. It was one of the best days of her life! They went to Maricopa County Animal Shelter and adopted an adorable 8-week old Dachshund / Beagle mix.

At the time, Shannon thought Max was an original name. She now knows that Max is one of the top five male dog names in America. Being a Beagle mix, Max will eat anything if it is not green. He hates lettuce, peas, and broccoli, but will eat absolutely anything else. He now has a nickname of Buddha or Buddha Belly because he is slightly round in the mid-section. But he’s a great dog and is super smart.

He learns tricks very quickly. He knows all the basic commands: sit, lay down, shake (both paws), stay, come, leave it, wait. And he knows advanced commands too, such as, spin, high five, kiss, left (sit on the left side), and he is working on “right” now which will mean sit on the right side.

Max loves to go off-leash in a field next his home and play fetch. He also loves playing with the hose in the backyard. But Max is happiest when all his family is close-by and relaxed. His favorite time of day is bedtime when he gets snuggles from Shannon and her mom.

Growing up, Shannon always had a fondness for animals. In her childhood, she had responsibilities to care for hamsters, guinea pigs, fish, rabbits, parakeets, and even hermit crabs! Now she has a beta fish named Jean val Jean, and of course, Max.

Shannon had wanted to be a veterinarian growing up, but when she interned at a vet clinic in high school she decided it wasn’t the career path she wanted after all. She is much happier at Happy Pets Palace working with happy, healthy dogs!

Shannon attends ASU in Tempe majoring in Biology with an emphasis on animal behavior and physiology and a certificate in environmental education.

She is acquiring hands-on experience by volunteering at Liberty Wildlife in Phoenix. She enjoys her closeness to the animals in their Orphan Care section. Shannon is hopeful this practical experience will make a difference towards helping wildlife in her future career.

When Shannon is not in school, working at Happy Pets, volunteering at Liberty Wildlife, or pet sitting, she loves to travel and spend time with family and friends. She loves amusement parks (especially Disneyland!) and going to the zoo. In her down time, she likes to read and watch movies.

Participating with Reach Out Volunteers, Shannon will be visiting Cambodia helping a village that needs a project done. The Reach Out Volunteers will also be working in an elephant sanctuary where they will plant food and bathe elephants under a waterfall! After her volunteer studies trip, she and a friend will be going to Thailand to explore.

Shannon is passionate about animals and rescues. If she won the lottery, she would buy a whole bunch of land and start a rescue with her sister for all kinds of dogs. It would be a dream come true to help take care of dogs in need and hopefully find them loving homes. Her personal “dream pack” would be: a Greyhound, a Sheltie, a Golden Retriever, an Old English Sheepdog, and an American Foxhound. However, she will always get her future dogs from rescues or shelters, and isn’t focused as much on the breed as she is providing a loving home for dogs. And that’s fine with her!