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professional bio


Lorrie Shaw, CAHP, CHPA began her career over 20 years ago caring for area companion animals. During that time, she has raised the bar in the pet care industry with knowledge, professionalism and phenomenal communication skills as a mentor and coach to fellow pet care professionals across the country.

Lorrie isn't your average pet care professional. As far back as 2013, she knew that the industry's minimal availability of educational training was at best, anemic. And she saw from experience that in order to serve families optimally in the areas of increasing demand -- primarily with the geriatric pet population, and not to mention animal hospice and behavior -- she needed to blaze her own trail. 

Highly-skilled in all aspects of pet care, Lorrie has earned the distinctions of Certified Animal Hospice Practitioner, Fear Free Certified Professional, Certified Professional Pet Sitter, Dog Bite Safety Educator and Certified Pet Loss and Grief Companion, the latter of which allows her to work in a professional capacity with families coping with the emotional toil with pets in end-of-life, as well as individuals seeking professional Companioning in their journey through pet loss and grief. Her professional training didn't end there: her educational background also includes that as an end-of-life doula for humans.

It’s no surprise, though, that her wheelhouse is the care of pets in their senior and geriatric years, as well as pets of any age who are receiving palliative and hospice care under a vet's oversight -- a field that she is an industry leader in. As an experienced Certified Animal Hospice Practitioner, she has the respect and confidence of many families and local clinical, house call and hospice veterinarians as well as veterinary specialists, including oncology and rehabilitation. Lorrie also brings her years of experience and training in canine and feline behavior to serve as an adjunct in caring for pets who see the world differently due to existing behavioral challenges at any life stage including those that manifest during their final months of life.  

She shares her insight and stories as a writer who, even during her time as a regular contributor to & MLive, made it her mission to elevate the conversation about many pet-related topics, especially the human-animal bond. These days, her writing can be found twice-monthly on her blog, Animals Unfolded. As frequent podcast co-host and guest, she broaches the topics beyond the human-animal bond including animal palliative care, hospice and end-of-life, ethology, animal behavior as well as the impact of empathetic distress in the pet care industry, with veterinary and animal shelter and rescue staff, and the necessity of practicing self-care at each level.  

She is a current and active member of Animal Hospice Group, Pet Professional Guild, International Association of Animal Hospice & Palliative Care, Pet Sitters International, International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (supporting member), Doggone Safe, Association for Pet Loss & Bereavement and the National End Of Life Doula Alliance. 

Lorrie also holds certifications in Veterinary Infectious Disease Management as well as Pet First Aid/CPR -- including the newest veterinary CPR guidelines. She is big believer in ongoing education, and in 2023 earned her Certified Animal Hospice Practitioner credential, facilitated by Animal Hospice Group. Lorrie participates in countless on-site class certification modules and webinars offered by the professional organizations that she is a member of. She enthusiastically travels to participate in conferences & workshops, including those facilitated by Fear Free Pets, International Association for Animal Hospice & Palliative Care, Michael Shikashio of Aggressive Dog, Debbie Jacobs of Fearful Dogs & Coleen Ellis of The Pet Loss Center.


She completed the process to earn her credential as a Certified Hospice & Palliative Care Advocate with the International Association for Animal Hospice & Palliative Care in July, 2024. She will be pursuing additional training in advanced communication skills in late summer 2024, which will dovetail this program.

How does this all impact Lorrie's work with families? Click here and scroll to 'what people are saying' to read first hand accounts by those who've partnered with her.

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