Julia Maiden

Dogs and their training have always played a major part in Julia's life, and her whole family have shared in her passion fully.  Julia has always had a soft spot for those dogs that our society shuns, and even with four ex-SPCA dogs currently sharing her home, she is still able to keep a close eye on the dogs needing new homes by working tirelessly with the Wellington SPCA.

Whenever Julia takes on a task she does so wholeheartedly, this is not only reflected in the life membership awarded her from a Wellington dog training club (after 20+ years of being the first voice anyone enquiring about training heard it is no wonder that many people still remember their first conversation with Julia about dog training) - but can also be seen in her dedication to the Wellington SPCA.  Julia has worked on the Wellington SPCA's Executive Committee and has helped devise training programmes for not only the shelter animals but also for the staff and volunteers who will work with the animals.  This allowed her to introduce clicker training (a positive reinforcement training method).  In taking this further Julia endeavours to work on various schemes to encourage new owners to continue with the training even after adoption.  And if that isn't enough to ensure that the SPCA continues to succeed Julia has been the at the forefront of fund-raising, achieved to raising over $30,000 by inspiring and organising people from local dog-training clubs, volunteers and even Paws clients to meet and greet the public with the SPCA Dog Squads. You may see her with a group of other volunteers walking the SPCA puppies around the waterfront. All of this has led to her recently being awarded by the Governor General.

Not only does Julia teach our puppy classes but her flair for working with people is highly regarded in performing home visits for owners needing more personal dog-training advice and coaching.  And you will often see Julia helping out in both the Doggy Daycare and Grooming areas of the business, or even being one of the friendly voices taking your calls.

Julia's passion for dogs and their welfare continues to drive her forward into the public eye, behind that she has a history of canine achievements that any dog loving person would be proud of.  Julia's dog training talents have led her to not only training for a variety of television shows and adverts but to also do demonstrations on live television, including showing how even blind or deaf dogs can still be trained successfully using the positive methods.

Julia is an absolutely valued member of the Paws in the City team, and we are proud that she has chosen this business to share her passion and talents with.

Karen McCarthy
KAREN McCARTHY MA (Canine Pyschology, Behaviour & Training)

Karen has been around dogs from a young age and always dreamed of letting her passion become her life’s work.  Breed showing may have been where Karen started but this soon developed into a passion for training and teaching which then led to taking on a professional mobile dog grooming business.  Using her professional business experience meant that the service was able to grow by adding a grooming salon, which then included using her training experience to take the puppy and adult training classes and private consultations to the professional level too.  Having travelled to learn more about training and attend seminars and workshops in other countries gave Karen the opportunity to work internationally; this allowed the business to grow the next level by bringing in partners with the same passion, adding daycare and having our own premises.

Teaching specialised classes incorporating clicker training (puppy, obedience, life-skills, agility) and then moving onto training dog’s for the client at a residential training school has given Karen an even wider knowledge of training methods and practices which she has brought into the fold at Paws.

Apart from having a Master's degree in dog psychology, training & behaviour Karen has also gained many other related certificates from studying and experience in New Zealand and the rest of the world.  She is a full member of the Canine & Feline Behaviour Association in the UK, a Master Trainer with the Guild of Dog Trainers in the UK and a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers in New Zealand.

As seems to be the trend of the Paws Directors, Karen has also been profiled in the national media of newspapers, television and radio in relation to dogs and training, including appearing on NZ’s Tux Wonderdogs and being interviewed by the UK BBC.  Karen and her dog Connor (Gordon Setter) represented New Zealand twice at UK’s Crufts Dog Show both in 2007 & 2008 and also in two disciplines for both years - International Heelwork to Music and Agility competitions - a first for NZ!  Connor who was 10½ at the time of the second year, did us proud in gaining 8th out of 19 countries in the 1st round of the agility.  Connor was also the very first dog in New Zealand to gain any kind of Canine Good Citizen certificate with the NZ Kennel Club, and the first Gordon Setter in NZ to attain Championship status (breed showing) with CDX (Companion Dog Excellent) and ADX (Agility Dog Excellent) titles. Karen has continued this on with Connor's daughter Vienna in representing NZ at Crufts in the International Agility in 2010 gaining a 17th out of 23 countries; she also competed in the same event in 2011, this is along with showing Vienna in the breed class at Crufts in both 2007 and 2010 and represented NZ with Vienna for the first time in 2013 in the International Freestyle.

With over 35 years experience in dog training and grooming, Karen is an integral part of the Paws team - you will see her working in every aspect of the business.  Her personal dedication and innovative style for everything she does led Karen to be awarded life membership to a local dog training club and the caring method that Karen uses in her grooming has also meant her becoming an internationally published author (Grooming Book).

This enthusiasm and determination to enhance at least the dog's world is what keeps Karen motivated to take the human/canine relationship into the 21st century.  Even though Karen has competed in dog competition including breed showing, obedience, agility and heelwork to music she still keeps the role of the pet dog firmly in mind and it is this that focuses her to help create the best canine caring centre in Wellington.
And although Karen is currently in the UK developing a Paws in the City presence there she is still very much in close contact with the business in NZ.

Carol Meilink

Carol has been involved with dogs, their showing and training all of her life.  Having been a valued member of two Wellington based dog training clubs Carol has always assisted in these clubs with teaching classes as well as being involved at committee level.

Even though dogs have always been a huge part of Carol's life her main career for many years was professional photography and this is still reflected in her passion for taking pictures at every opportunity.

Carol has successfully represented her area in agility at a national level, a feat that was highly contested and deservedly won.  Her passion for dogs has seen her compete in breed showing, obedience and agility.

Carol and her family currently live with 3 dogs, Vada, Johnny & his sister Lily and until recently, Sasha; Carol trains and competes successfully in agility with both Vada and her daughter's Pointer/Vizsla x Meg. You will often find the dogs accompanying Carol on her mobile grooming rounds. Carol is an accomplished groomer and had been with the business for many years and is an important and vital team member of Paws.

Her passion for training and the dogs has led her to become a highly skilled clicker teacher, a method which she makes the most out of - even training her Lorikeet - who also does a brilliant recall.  Carol and Oscar have also been in the media with Oscar showing his skills and handsomeness for advertising.


Chloe is one of our daycarers but has such a talent for grooming that you will often see her working in both the salon and helping out in the mobile grooming van from time to time.
Elena grooms mainly at our salon but you may see her out and about helping in our Mobile grooming van..
Georgia is the friendly face saying good bye to all the dogs in daycare most nights. Georgia has two Staffordshire Bull Terriers, Major and Harley and a little Jack Russell called Poppi who loves having all the daycare visitors to play with! In her spare time you can find Georgia caring for her two horses, Speights and Kahlua.


Grace is one of the friendly faces in the daycare team and you will usually find her taking care of the doggy guests at our Thorndon premises.

John meets and greets visitors at our Thorndon facility in the morning. He is a member of the DAWG Agility Club, and an avid American Cocker Spaniel fan having trained them for agility which he has been quite successful at; along with Rico (a black and white parti-colour Amercian Cocker) he now also shares his life with an SPCA rescue called Red.  One of his past dogs (Zak) had their picture on the NZ Kennel Club banner! Watch some of John’s agility videos hereJohn recently earned ADX (Agility Dog Excellence) with Rico.

Kim has been around dogs all her life and even as a small youngster her mother often used to find her curled up in the dog's bed! Kim is a groomer, trainer and from time to time helps out looking after the dogs in daycare. Kim has been training dogs for many years starting at a local dog training school and also recently spending nearly two years in the UK training dogs and beginning her grooming career.

Peter works behind the scenes making sure all our accounts and administrative duties are kept up to date and in good order.
Zak helps keep the daycare dogs busy during the day by playing games with them and making sure that they are all staying happy and contented. You may see Zak out walking in some of the dogs in the local park.

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