• “Certification Pet Parents Can Trust”

Certified Professional Spotlight: Stephanie Shipley

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Born and raised in New Brunswick, Canada, Stephanie Shipley opened Paw & Order Inc. in December 2009 after having dreamed of helping, playing and working with dogs as a career since she was a young child. After spending much of her adult life in both the operations and human resource areas of the hospitality industry for Delta Hotels and Marriott International with a staff of 300+ employees, it was an easy decision to make the leap from working in the human hospitality field to providing exceptional pet hospitality. Stephanie started training dogs to play flyball many years ago but soon became much more interested in the specialty of Canine Communication and Behaviour. She is heavily involved with local dog rescue and rehabilitation for local, provincial and national organizations. Stephanie initially set out to change the way that pet care is viewed in her own community on the east coast of Canada by raising the bar through training, education and certification.

Stephanie operates her own pet care facility, Paw & Order, and provides facility consulting services all over North America through Higher Paws. When not at the facility, her time is spent with her 4-month twin girls, Lincoln and Lennon. She enjoys speaking with groups ranging from kindergarten age to seniors about responsible pet ownership, canine communication, providing enrichment for family pets, entrepreneurship and human resources. She does this all while lobbying for tougher animal protection legislation. She is a Certified Animal Care Provider, a Certified Animal Care Operator and a Certified PetTech Instructor.

PACCC: How did you find out about PACCC?

Stephanie: I found out about PACCC while scrolling through Facebook several years ago and then had the opportunity to meet some of the Board Members while attending a conference in Hershey, PA.

PACCC: What was your motivation for becoming a CPACP and a CPACO?

Stephanie: From the first moment that I realized there existed a third-party independent certification for the pet care industry, I knew that I had to be a part of it. In a virtually unregulated industry, the public can’t tell the difference from a company’s Facebook page of website whether they are actually qualified to care for people’s pets. All along I was telling my clients that I was good at what I was doing and that I knew what I was doing but I had no way to actually prove it to them before asking them to trust me to love and care for their furry family member. PACCC certification allows me to say “Don’t believe me because I can tell you anything I want. Believe this!” and I show them my certification.

PACCC: Has being certified made a change to your business? Relationships with staff or clients? Reputation in the community?

Stephanie: Most definitely!! I proudly boast on every medium available that my facility has four PACCC Certified team members and five certifications – 4 CPACPs and Canada’s only CPACO! Our clients have supported us every step of the way and are so supportive of our efforts to raise the bar for pet care in our community. They tell their family and their friends that certification is a big reason why they picked us from the list on Google when they searched for pet care. The community has taken notice of us and we are preceded by our excellent reputation. We stand very proud of our accomplishment of becoming certified professionals, our clients stand tall beside us because they are proud of how serious we take pet care and our community has recognized us as a leader in pet care.

PACCC: Would you recommend certification to other pet care professionals? If so, why? If not, why not?

Stephanie: I most definitely recommend sitting for the PACCC Exam. It has changed everything in our business for the better! Our staff are speaking to our clients and potential clients with more pride than ever before. We are getting better qualified candidates applying to work with us. Our clients are boasting about our accomplishments and sharing in our success and our company name is recognized throughout our city.

PACCC: Anything else you would like to add?

Stephanie: In business I hate spending money. As a matter of fact, I refuse to spend any money. Instead of spending it I choose to invest it. The difference between spending and investing is that with any investment there is always a return (ROI). PACCC certification has been one of the best investments I have ever made since the returns have been significant with no signs of slowing down any time soon. I just sent in my CEUs for my CPACP renewal and stand very tall and proud of this accomplishment.