not your average pet care provider
palliative, hospice, end-of-life doula (fourth life stage) care support for companion animals
when you can't be there, or need respite care
With my years of professional and personal experience, palliative and hospice care for companion animals is my wheelhouse. Whether it's due to age-related decline, mobility issues, a diagnosis of a life-limiting illness at any age or conditions like Chronic Kidney Disease and arthritis, I work closely with families and their veterinarians in managing and monitoring a pet's condition and to provide comfort care every step of the way. There's no need to go it alone with the support and expertise that I can provide.
Service area variable.
Inquiries about where to begin are always welcome.
let's have fun!
For over 17 years, area families have been saying, '...you're our first choice!' when seeking knowledgeable, in-home pet care for their animal companions. The reason? The very best in expert care, communication and the aim for excellence so that families can have a worry-free trip, no matter for pleasure, business or tending to family matters.
Service area for pet sitting is limited to West Ann Arbor, Dexter, Dexter Township, Hell and some areas of Chelsea.
Booking reservations into late-July, 2020
overnight sitting services
for those pets needing extra tending & supervision at night
Who doesn't love extra company at night? For some family pets, they just fare better when a trusted caregiver is there overnight. This is where I come in.
Overnight pet sitting stays are an option that I provide to families for pets of any age.
Families with pets that are in hospice or are receiving enhanced palliative care due to age or fragile health (and whose medical care is being overseen by a veterinarian on a regular basis) find this service especially helpful as it provides them some much-needed respite while ensuring that their pet’s emotional well-being and care plan is maintained by an experienced professional.
Limited service area, select dates for overnight stays available into mid-April, 2020.
-certified professional pet sitting
-certified professional overnight stays for pets
-palliative, hospice, end-of-life doula care support for pets
-specialty services + care for pets
-certified pet loss and grief companioning
"Lorrie just looked after our 3 cats for the 1st time last week. They loved her, which is unusual because they can take a long time to warm up to people, but they warmed right up to her. One of them has an intermittent urinary problem and we totally trusted her to know what to look for as far as symptoms and what to do if he got sick. Huge relief! She's going to be our go-to from now on!" - Siobhan Donnelly, Ann Arbor
"Lorrie Shaw is a highly skilled professional. I would never trust my sweet pup with anyone else. She’s a lifesaver!" Diane Dues, Dexter
"We have worked with Lorrie for over 10 years now! She was with us for our first pup right to the very end. He was very scared of everything and only comfortable with certain people and Lorrie was one of his favorites. She was there every step of the way at the end going above and beyond at all times. I don't know what we would have done without her. We finally got the courage to get another pup and she was one of the first people I called. She's already gave us amazing advice and has helped already. I would recommend her to anyone, she is fabulous!! Thank you Lorrie!!" - Janelle Monaco, Dexter
"Lorrie is wonderful. I can't say enough good things about her. She is caring, gentle and smart. When she visited my older poodle, Emma, at lunch one day recently, she immediately called me and sent me a video so I could see that Emma was in trouble. And she kept her company until I could get home to take her to the vet. I trust her completely with my little one."
Pat Schremser, Dexter
"I have and an 11 year old German Shepherd Dog. In that time, I have found no one that I trust more to care for my dog than Lorrie Shaw! My dog has had 3 cancer surgeries and Lorrie is completely proficient in giving her dietary supplements with her food. Daily video text clips are a wonderful way that Lorrie checks in to show me how much exercise and fun my dog is having! Lorrie really has all of the bases covered when it comes to pet sitting and understanding the needs of animals. I feel fortunate to have found Lorrie to take care of my best friend while I am unable to! I highly recommend Lorrie as someone who I am happy is a part of my pet's life!"
Natasha A., Dexter
"We have been fortunate to have Lorrie dog sit for our dog, Quinn, on several occasions. Because Quinn is a special needs dog (he is blind and has mobility and behavioral issues), he requires someone to stay at our home nights and also to administer medicine during the day. Lorrie has cared for Quinn with skill and kindness.
Lorrie is a true professional. Her knowledge of behavioral and medical issues which affect dogs is remarkable. She shows true affection and caring for Quinn. Her communication with us while we’re away is super. She sends us updates on Quinn and videos of him. I addition, she has given us many good ideas for keeping Quinn entertained and happy. Knowing that Lorrie is taking such excellent care of Quinn while we’re away gives up the opportunity to relax and enjoy the trip!!"
-- Anita and Bob Vaughan, Ann Arbor
I seriously won the lottery when I found Lorrie Shaw. She’s a pet sitter who specializes in geriatric, special needs and hospiced pets. She cares for pets when their family people travel or who just work longer days than the pets can be left home alone. And then there are clients like me — mobility limited and not able to give my aging dogs all the best care.
Lorrie came daily starting last fall to take my 16 year old doxie Frank out for walking and exercise. He really enjoyed the outside time and being taken for walks on the driveway and grassy yard. He could sniff everything and wander at will something that would be difficult for me to do, especially getting him up and down the front steps since he could no longer manage to climb stairs and was growing more demented by the day. She also worked with him inside playing little food-motivated mind games which he seemed to enjoy. She stayed with her care for him until he went to the bridge late in the fall.
She also worked with my other doxie, 16 year old Duke, who had an enlarging heart but was in good shape until he injured his rear legs and became mobility limited himself. He was being hospiced at that point so no heroic measures were being considered, only medications and practices that enhanced his comfort. Duke needed to be carried outside at that point to take care of business and we could see that the more he walked the better and less stiff he became so Lorrie worked with him daily and achieved good results. He was always better for having been out to walk and remained in a stable condition far longer than we expected.
As Duke became increasingly picky at eating Lorrie was on a mission to entice him to eat daily in order to get meds (pain, heart and G.I.) into him. His appetite was quite variable and her track record of encouraging him to eat and take meds was remarkable. As an end-of-life doula she also worked with our previous vet clinic and the hospice pet home care vet we engaged toward the end. She is very knowledgeable about conditions and medical practices and was able to advise and assist with these. And was also very kind and caring of us when it became apparent that Duke was at his end. It was a rough emotional time for us and Lorrie was diligent about checking in with us even after Duke’s departure because that was also part of Lorrie’s service. There are not enough words of gratitude to adequately express thanks to Lorrie.
-- Char Olson, Pinckney
Lorrie is a dedicated person who is extremely knowledgeable about pet care. We trust her implicitly with our two cats, who can sometimes be challenging to care for - but they love her! One of them has some special needs and requires medication twice a day. Lorrie is patient and has provided helpful suggestions regarding his medicine. The peace of mind she provides when we're away makes our trips more enjoyable.
-- Wendy Hains, Dexter
I'm so lucky to have found Lorrie. I can't give enough praise for her knowledge, professionalism, and genuine love of animals. I feel very secure leaving my two aging, and demanding, cats in her care. More than once she has gone far beyond the call of duty to deal with challenging situations. And my cats think she's great, too!
-- Pat Truzzi, Ann Arbor
It is hard to find a pet sitter you trust will understand your pet the way you do. It is so much harder to find one that you trust to care for a chronically-ill pet. I know that I can make sure my sweet cat gets his meds on time, that his days have as little stress as possible and that he knows he is loved every minute. But until I found Lorrie Shaw I didn’t think it would be possible that anyone else could take care of him, including those in my immediate family! When some mandatory family travel came up (no one had traveled in over a year because I couldn’t leave my little guy), I had to take a chance on someone else. Lorrie turned out to be the absolutely magical combination of animal lover, experienced caregiver for ill pets and complete professional. Lorrie can handle complicated medication schedules … when they go right and when they go wrong. She is flexible, determined and primed with more tricks to get a dose into a cat than I knew existed! Most importantly, she is an exceptional communicator. Through both of our trips away I knew exactly what meds my cat had taken and when, and I also saw daily video proof of how well my two healthy guys were doing (and how much they liked her!) … which allowed my family and I to relax and enjoy both trips way more than I realized possible. I can’t recommend Lorrie highly enough – she took wonderful care of my healthy cats and kept my sick cat relaxed and on his medication schedule. Like I did, you may think you are the only one that can care for your sick pet. But trust me … Lorrie can, too!
-- Annemarie Dolan, Ann Arbor
If we had to define Lorrie Shaw in three words they would be; “Knowledgeable, Professional & Dedicated”. We were impressed with the thoroughness of the initial meeting and interview with Lorrie and her high level of organization to ensure that complete information and history on our pet was being provided.
We believe that Lorrie is the perfect person to stay in our home with Rip, our 12-1/2-year-old English Mastiff, and she provides us with peace of mind while we are traveling. Beyond that, Lorrie has the experience to think ahead and incorporate the “what-if” scenarios into the care of Rip.
An example of Lorrie’s connection with Rip was her suggestion to stop by for a visit with Rip prior to our next vacation. Our cleaning person was here when Lorrie visited and later told us how “sweet” Lorrie and Rip interacted, a “True Bond”.
It is great for all pet owners that Lorrie is so involved in promoting the pet care industry and continuing to pursue even more knowledge. We need more people with Lorrie’s skills, and she is working to help make that happen.
-- Lisa and Frank Johnson
Lorrie has been taking care of my cats for the past three years. She’s definitely the best pet sitter I’ve had in my 30 years of adult life with cats. I tend to be a bit of a worrier when I go out of town and leave my three guys, particularly because my oldest cat has some health issues. But I know that I can trust Lorrie completely - she knows her stuff! It’s been such a relief to be able to leave town and not worry one second about the cats. Lorrie is competent to handle anything that could possibly arise. She touches base regularly, including sending a daily video which features all three cats and an update on how everybody’s doing. It’s clear my cats are 100% comfortable with her and that they get to follow their follow their typical routine, including playing their favorite games. Lorrie’s absolutely the best, and I can’t recommend her highly enough.
-- Jamie Taylor, Ypsilanti
Lorrie has cared for our dogs both old and young for many years. She easily handled our elderly dog's medicine regimen and now she finds ways to occupy our younger, energetic dog in our absence. It is so reassuring to receive daily updates and videos of our pet when we are away! Lorrie is both extremely caring and reliable and I'm not sure what we would do without her.
-- Adrienne Losh, Ann Arbor
Our 15 year old dog Pele immediately took to Lorrie. She has a way that totally clicked with him. That was our first sign that Lorrie would be the right person to care for him in our absence. We recently had Lorrie care for Pele for five days and it was 100% clear how caring, kind, competent, reliable, and responsible Lorrie is. She was completely focused on his care. Her daily videos were lovely, detailed, and totally reassuring. Pele is a fragile elder who is deaf and who had suffered a previous TIA. Lorrie is truly knowledgeable about elder pet medical issues and her skill and professionalism allowed us to travel in peace knowing that our precious dog was in great, loving hands. Thanks Lorrie!
-- Rochelle Flumenbaum, Ann Arbor
I'm a big believer in communication, and doing it right from the start. Want to get the ball rolling to see if we're a fit? Feel free to reach out by phone or with the email address at the bottom of the page. You can also zip off a message to me with the form provided below. Please include your first and last name in your correspondence, as well as your telephone number, and location, with a street/cross street/your city. I look forward to connecting with you. -- Lorrie Shaw, CPPS, EOLD, CPLGC
"Lorrie is a trusted member of our extended pet family, and, as a veterinarian, I am very comfortable traveling for long periods of time when Lorrie is in charge. Her attention to detail, knowledge of each of our 5 pets, and willingness to jump in at the last minute if she is able has made her our pet sitter of choice! We are not the kind of people who would travel if it meant leaving our pets in cages at a kennel....Lorrie has enriched the lives of both us and our pets. Five stars!"
Cathy Theisen, DVM