Dawn has been an animal lover from the beginning. Growing up
she worked at pet stores, stables, and volunteered at the zoo. As
soon as she graduated high school she moved away to California
to attend college at the
Exotic Animal Training and Management Program.
After college Dawn went to work at Six Flags California
training animals and educating the public about them. She spent
the next six years raising and training several species of
animals. Dawn wrote educational programs and traveled all over
the Los Angeles area doing outreach.
Dawn moved back to her home state of
NJ to be closer to her family. Here she worked from
home as a regional training manager for a nationwide
dog training company. She was responsible for
training and supervising over 50 dog trainers on the
east coast. During this time Dawn also worked at a
local animal shelter and trained dogs. Dawn was
invited to speak several times on Fox New Channel's
pet program. She also started her dog Lady in
commercials and movies with the help of an agent in
A few years later, Dawn got the opportunity to move to the
mountains of Tennessee. Her family said they planned to retire
there in a few years, so she left.
She kept her job as a manager for the dog training company and
worked from home in a beautiful mountain setting with four acres
surrounding her. The property was perfect for boarding dogs and
"Just Fer Paws" was born. Dawn immediately became active
with the local humane society and met The Comedy Barn owner at a
fund raiser. He fell in love with her two dogs and the tricks
they could do. The current trainer at the theater was leaving
that year and Dawn was offered the opportunity to find and train
dogs for the show. Dawn left her manager job and spent the next
four months finding and training the dogs for the show. That was
almost seven years ago and she loves it just as much as day one.
Dawn has stayed active in pet training and throughout the
last 10 years has attended seminars on everything from
aggression to temperament testing.
Through out the last several years her dogs have been featured
in several news stories, go to senior centers for pet therapy,
traveled to Pet Star, worked at Camp Gone to the Dogs, been
featured in commercials, ads and videos and performed at several
charity events and schools.
On September 25, 2005 Dawn married her
sweetheart of two years. Doug was not only the first
man to meet all the animals and not run, but he was
the first to accept them as his own. Nevada was the
ring bearer and Miss Ellie showed up in a wedding
dress to try and steal Doug. They live with 11 dogs, 1 cat,
& 4 chickens. In May 2008 they added their first HUMAN child!
Life is good!!