Pawtropolis will never sacrifice on the quality of our staff. We go above and beyond typical pet-care staff training.All of our animal caretakers must complete our comprehensive Pawtropolis Training Program. This program is designed to help them learn about animal care, dog behavior, pack behavior, emergency procedures, discipline procedures, and more. Our staff progress through stages of training — Trainee to Apprentice and finally to full Pack Member.
After months of rigorous training and staff requirements, Pack Members may supervise a large group of rowdy players. They are trained on how to intervene in the event of aggressive behavior. However, our primary training focuses on how to prevent such incidences by understanding dog behavior, redirecting problem behavior, keeping the groups’ energy level at a low to mid-level range, managing resources, rotating dogs from active play to rest-time, evaluating dogs and their compatibility with our playgroups, and much more. Pawtropolis puts significant effort into making sure our daycare dogs are having fun and ensuring each dog always feels safe. Our goal is for them to be well-balanced at the end of the day, not just tired.
Because the health of your pets is of utmost concern, we encourage employees to participate in the American Pet First Aid Class. This extensive safety class adds to our staff’s knowledge and even offers participants a chance to practice CPR on dummy dogs. This amazing program is also offered to the public. Most Pawtropolis staff are also Red Cross Pet-First-Aid certified, including all of our managers. Our Executive Manager Shane Allen is one of only two people in the state of Georgia who is certified to train other pet-first-aid instructors.
Amanda started her life with dogs when she got a long-wanted dalmatian at 15 years old. After excelling in a local obedience class, she began competing in American Kennel Club events. She trained her dogs in the area of obedience, rally, and agility, placing multiple titles on her own dogs as well as others she trained. While attending college, Amanda started a pet sitting company called “Home Alone Pet Care”. This, along with being a waitress and a bartender, supported Amanda through college.
After obtaining a degree from the University of Georgia, Amanda began the process of opening Pawtropolis. One evening while bartending, she told a customer her business name and logo idea. He took out a pen and napkin and drew what is now the Pawtropolis logo (yes, she still has that napkin). Little did she know, this customer was actually a well-known Athens artist.
Her dream of Pawtropolis came true only 6 months after graduating. Grand opening day was December 1st, 2001. John came on board full time after they got married in 2008 and has become an invaluable asset to Pawtropolis. They welcomed daughter Evelyn July 2012 and twins Grayson and Lydia September 2014.
Amanda & Pawtropolis are industry leaders, using her over 22 years experience to create one of the top doggie daycares around. Amanda has been the keynote speaker and taught sessions at Pet Boarding and Daycare Expos across the country. She has developed an extensive training program for her staff, ensuring all play groups are managed by qualified animal caretakers. Many of Amanda’s training manuals and documents have been purchased by other businesses to be used at their facility. Amanda uses her knowledge and experience to help others in this industry. In 2017, she began Dog Daycare Business Consulting and has consulted clients from California to New York and Ontario, Canada to Mexico City, Mexico.
Most importantly, Amanda knows the value of having high personal integrity and honesty. She has included this as one of Pawtropolis’s Core Values. She respects her clients and knows that in order to build a loyal clientele, Pawtropolis has to have open communication with clients and create relationships built on trust. Amanda and her managers have a “Growth Mindset” when it comes to Pawtropolis. They know there will always be ways to improve even after 22 years. When mistakes happen, they are used as learning tools for the future. This way of doing business is what will keep Pawtropolis an amazing business, for now, and for another 20 years!
Shane has been working with us full-time since October of 2007. That’s not a typo; he’s been with us for over 15 years! He started with us as a fresh graduate from Animal Behavior College “ABC” with aspirations of becoming a full-time trainer. Though he still likes training dogs and teaching owners, he realized his passion lies more in the area of dog daycare, client relations, and facility management.
Shane is a Mentor Trainer with ABC as well as a Canine Good Citizen Certified Evaluator. He is also one of only two people in Georgia that is certified as a pet first aid instructor for Pet Tech Pet First Aid.
As talented as Shane is when it comes to dog training, behavior and health, his real gift is building relationships with clients and making sure they are happy with the services we provide. He enjoys helping clients with any questions or concerns they have regarding their pets as well as educating clients and the Athens community on how to be responsible pet owners, have well-behaved pets, and feed them healthy diets. Shane is fiercely protective of client experiences and animal care. If we fail to meet our high standards of care, or if we have a client’s trust in us falter, Shane immediately takes steps to find out what happened, make things right, and make any policy or staffing changes needed to prevent similar situations in the future. His title used to be “Quality Assurance Manager” because of this very reason.
As if that wasn’t enough, Shane is also a consultant with Amanda’s Dog Daycare Business Consulting. He frequently consults clients via phone, trains them in person at one of our facilities, and even travels to their facilities if necessary.
Shane grew up in Oconee County, around cattle farms and ponds. His family bred Shetland Sheepdogs and always had farm dogs around the house. Shane has always enjoyed spending time outdoors. Now, instead of cattle, he spends his time outside of work with his 3 kids, two dogs named Hula and Princess, and two cats. He spends a lot of time eating, and cooking, good food and searching for the best beers that Athens has to offer. He also collects knives and is a skilled artist with wood and metal.
Amber has been working with us since September of 2009 when she was an undergraduate student at UGA. She graduated from UGA in 2013 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Development and Family Sciences and then moved to “fill-in” status with us while she pursued a career related to her degree. After a few years, she decided to prioritize her career with Pawtropolis so she could spend her time working with well-loved pets and their people. We couldn’t be happier with her decision!
She’s now a member of our Corporate Management team as our Executive Office Manager. Amber works primarily off-location, but just because you might not see her smiling face as often, she does a magnitude of duties that keep Pawtropolis sailing smoothly. Her ability to organize and pay attention to the fine details, helps her excel in managing the intricacies of payroll, scheduling, employee benefits, and much more. Being with us for over 14 years, Amber knows Pawtropolis inside and out and shares Amanda’s vision for the future of Pawtropolis. Along with Amanda and Shane, Amber uses much of her time evaluating current polices and procedures, supporting location managers, and planning future expansion projects.
Amber’s part-time status is due to a very important reason. Her family has expanded quite a bit since she first started with Pawtropolis. She and her husband Dan (who she met while working here!) are the lucky parents of a sweet young lady named Amelia and an energetic little girl named Teagan. Helping manage Pawtropolis and homeschooling her daughters, she still finds time to run a small in-home bakery company that sells at the Oconee County Farmer’s Market and to take care of the multitude of farm animals that calls Amber’s house their home. Amber is Superwoman to all of us; leaving us all wondering how she does it all.
Billy joined the Pawtropolis crew just this year in May. Already he is proving himself to be a wonderful addition with his laid-back personality and upbeat attitude! The dogs respond very well to him (even though he is a guy!), especially our German Shepherd clients, which Billy has a natural affinity for! He has his own GSD named Apollo, who facilitated his love for the breed.
He is a sophomore at the University of North Georgia and is in their Pre-Vet program. When he needed work, his passion for dogs made Pawtropolis the obvious choice. His favorite part of the job is supervising playgroups, where he spends his time getting to know each dog personally and making sure that they are comfortable with him. His favorite dogs to see include Kaiser, a German Shepherd, and Max, a Border Collie. He is pictured here with Portia and Max!.
When he isn’t spending time working with the shepherds and border collies in daycare, Billy enjoys playing basketball with his friends (which isn’t surprising since he’s so tall!) and watching Netflix.
Some fun facts about Billy are: he is an NFL trivia master, his favorite TV show is “The Office”, and he has been afraid of puppets since he was a child.
We are so excited to announce that Billy has been promoted to our Westside location’s General Manager! Billy grew up in Athens, Ga and Oglethorpe County. Growing up with his brother, they always had German Shepherds, and that’s where his love for the breed started. Now, he has a German Shepherd of his own named Marko! Billy started at Pawtropolis when he was looking for part time work with animals. He ended up loving it! His favorite part about the job is working with dogs that need a little extra assistance in Daycare. He also loves working with and forming relationships with our clients. Outside of work, Billy is a huge sports fan. He loves watching sports, spending time with his friends, and traveling. In the future, Billy hopes to visit every continent and buy a house one day! Fun facts about Billy: He loves to cook and try different restaurants and cuisines. He knows a ton about the history of the NFL. He has a terrarium that features snails.
We are so excited to announce that Daniel has been promoted to our Westside location’s Kennel Manager! Daniel grew up in Maryland, right outside of Washington, DC. For most of his childhood, Daniel grew up with cats because of his dad’s allergy to dogs. When Daniel was 14, his family got a white Standard Poodle named Dusty that became Daniel’s best friend. In 2007, Daniel went to the Atlanta School of Massage. However, in 2016 he got into a dirt bike accident that left him unable to do physical labor for 9 months.
After healing, he needed a job. He found a Dog Daycare/Boarding facility in his hometown and got to work! After a short amount of time, he knew that that was what he wanted to spend his life doing! In 2018, he went to a pet expo and found Pawtropolis! He wanted to learn more about an Indoor/Outdoor based facility, so he moved to Georgia in 2019 to start at Pawtropolis!
His favorite part of the job is using his knowledge on dogs to understand their social interactions with each other and people! Outside of work, Daniel has a 5 year old red Doberman named Valor. They have the best friendship! He also does mixed martial arts, focusing primarily on Jiu Jitsu (He’s a purple belt!). He loves Marvel and trying new hobbies. In the future, he hopes to own his own Dog Daycare/Boarding facility to continue to bring as much enrichment and joy to the pet community as possible.
Breanna grew up in Cordele, GA with her many pets as well as sisters Nattalie, Anslie, and Cecilla. Dino (Jack Russell Mix), Scooter (Dachshund), Koda (German Shepherd), Cleo (American Bulldog), Tootsie (Hound Mix), and Lulu (Kitty) were some of her favorite animals growing up. She currently goes to UGA and is studying Animal Science, so a job at Pawtropolis made perfect sense!
She said that working at a doggie daycare is the dream, and when she first started she was so excited to tell all her friends about the TVs in the dog Suites and the pool for pet Splashtimes! She said her favorite part of the job is getting to know the dogs and forming relationships with owners through spending time with their pets. She loves cracking jokes with everyone and telling them about how their pet’s day was.
Breanna has a four year old Chihuahua named Cappuccino and a one year old Dachshund Mix named Kiwi. She loves them so much, and she currently has over 100 toys for them. Most of her hobbies include Cappuccino and Kiwi, so she’s so happy to have them! Fun facts about Breanna: She’s her family’s favorite child, she loves Longhorn, she won her 6th grade spelling bee, and she’s basically a comedian.
Craig grew up around a lot of animals including dogs, cats, fish, hamsters, mice, and lizards in West Virginia with his 4 siblings. When Craig was 17, he joined the West Virginia National Guard from 2003. After working in many different jobs and industries, Craig decided to make a fresh start in Georgia. Not long after he moved, he found us, and we couldn’t be happier!
Craig was so excited when he got the chance to work with dogs and cats and build relationships with his coworkers and clients that love the animals as much as he does. Craig is also a proud cat dad to a rescue kitty named Tuna (affectionately called Petunia). He is also fostering our long-term Helping Paws Rescue dog, Iroh! Outside of working at Pawtropolis, Craig enjoys playing golf, skiing, white water rafting, and camping. If he isn’t being outdoorsy, he enjoys being lazy while relaxing on the couch reading or watching tv.
Craig has been such a wonderful asset to our team since he joined us back in 2019, and we’re so excited to have him as our Daycare Manager. Be sure to say ‘Hi’ to Craig when you see him at our front desk! Fun facts about Craig: He likes golf, disc golf, board games, table tops games, yard games, and camping. He says he has the coolest cat in the world.
li joined us in 2019, and he quickly became a wonderful asset! Now, Eli teaches our new employees his tips and tricks for managing in our playgroups. Eli was born in Athens and grew up in Oglethorpe County on a small cattle farm. He has an older brother named Ezra, and together they always had dogs and cats as pets growing up. Eli spent most of his childhood playing soccer and running cross country.
Eli decided to get a job at Pawtropolis because of all the love he had for his childhood pets. He wanted to continue to be around animals and create bonds with new pets every day. His favorite part of the job is getting to know owners, their pets, and their needs. He loves creating the most enjoyable experience for every pet in our care based on their wants and needs.
Outside of work, Eli has a German Shepherd mix named Kira that he rescued about a year and a half ago. He enjoys plants, spending time outdoors, and cooking. In the future, he hopes to begin training as a firefighter EMT soon.
Fun fact about Eli: All of his pets have been rescued.
Ansley grew up in Oglethorpe County, Georgia and graduated from Oglethorpe County High School. After high school, she wasn’t sure if she wanted to go to college but she knew she wanted to work with animals. We’re delighted that she decided to apply to work with us at Pawtropolis.
Ansley started here in September of 2017 and has been a bright ray of sunshine since her first day. She personally loves learning about different dog behaviors as much as possible. Ansley has a great heart and a lot of love for the dogs in our facility. When a client realized their rescue dog was not a good fit for her home and that it was necessary to return him to the rescue, Ansley drove all of the way to Tennessee to adopt him so he could have a forever home with her! Many of you have probably seen Marty (an adorable black pitbull mix low rider in Feisty Fidos), and he and Ansley are now inseparable! Ansley also has a chihuahua named Charlie and a cat named Arie.
Ansley is one of our hardest workers and always wears a smile. We hope to have her on the Pawtropolis team for a very long time! Fun facts about Ansley: She likes going out with friends, and she loves making people laugh!
Sara started with us in September of 2020, left to focus on school, and came back to us this March having earned her degree! She went to the University of Georgia and got a degree in advertising. Now, she’s our new Social Media Specialist, and she’s so excited to take fun photos of your pets!
Sara grew up in Blue Ridge, Georgia and moved to Athens to go to UGA! After coming to Athens, Sara got involved with dogs almost immediately. She began training dogs with the Guide Dog Foundation during her first year and loved it. After working with the future guide dogs, Sara decided it was a great time for a dog of her own. Peter, a Husky mix, according to his DNA test, came into Sara’s life during her second year at school, and today he’s 3.5 years old! When Sara realized how much time she would be spending away from her apartment, she was looking for solutions for Puppy Peter. That’s how she found Pawtropolis! Peter went to daycare Monday-Friday while Sara went to class, and he affectionately knows it as “school.”
Once 2020 and Covid hit, UGA closed and Peter no longer needed to come to Pawtropolis. The two spent their time cooking and walking together and really formed a bond. When it was safe and time for Sara to get a job again, she decided to come work at Pawtropolis! She loved spending time with Peter at home and knew she would love spending time with everyone’s pets at work. (and she does!) Now, Sara spends a lot of her days with the big Rowdy Rovers! Her favorite thing about the job is caring for the dogs in the private boarding options. She loves to lay out their belongings just right and give them lots of love.
After getting the job, Sara realized it would be the perfect time to get another dog. That’s when Wynter the Corgi joined her little fur family! Wynter is a big ball of energy and loves coming to Pawtropolis while her mom is working!
Fun facts about Sara: She likes to travel, read, and have sandwiches in the park with her dogs!
Jess grew up in Hull, GA with her mom, dad, and sister as well as a few fun pets. She had parakeets, 10 cats, a Cocker Spaniel named Puddin’, and a pig named Charlotte. Her mom used to breed Cocker Spaniels, and that led to her love for them (especially the family’s current Cocker Spaniel, Skeeter!)
Her favorite thing about working at Pawtropolis is learning about dog reactivity, behaviors, and helping the dogs themselves become better playmates for their friends. She loves being surrounded by dogs all day, too! Jess just adopted an 8 month old Great Pyrenees Mix named Prudence! The two have become best friends, and she’s learning how to be a dog from her roommate’s dogs, Peter and Wynter.
By all that, you wouldn’t know that Jess is one of Kitty City’s biggest fans. She loves spending time with them and making them feel comfortable. She actually has a cat of her own named Spooky that she adopted in 2020! When she’s not at work, Jess likes to paint, spend time with her friends, and go antique shopping with her mom and sister. In her future, she hopes to continue working with animals and become a foster home for those in need. Fun facts about Jess: She collects rocks and her favorite place is Venice, Florida.
Bri has been working with us since July of 2019! In November of 2020, she left to live in Hawaii for several months, and now she’s back and we couldn’t be happier to have her again!
Bri was born in New York but grew up in Jefferson, GA with her three brothers and three sisters! While there, she got Rocky, a three year old lab mastiff mix, and the two are inseparable!
Before Pawtropolis, she worked at Camp Bow Wow in Alpharetta, and there she discovered her love for working with animals. Because of this, she loves Pawtropolis, and she sees herself working with animals for a very long time! Her favorite part of the job is working with the puppies and seeing them grow into sweet adults.
For Bri’s future, she hopes to be happy, healthy, and surrounded by dogs in the future, and we wish that for her, too!
Fun fact about Bri: She explored Hawaii for a year!
Katie grew up in Scotland with her parents and her younger brother. They moved here when she was 15. She’s been working here since 2019, and we’ve loved every day with her!
She got the job at Pawtropolis because she wanted to get some work experience and knew that she would love working with animals. Her favorite part of the job now is spending time with the dogs in the Puppy Program and giving all the dogs lots of love.
Outside of work, she has a three year old Chihuahua mix named Willow who she adopted through the Helping Paws Rescue when she was a puppy. She also likes playing video games, watching shows and movies, and spending time with Willow. In the future, she’d like to own a Great Dane and an army of small dogs.
Fun facts about Katie: She’s been the youngest employee at Pawtropolis since she joined us three years ago!