33780032_10156110383745306_1392845099385225216_nI’m Karen, a Washington native, animal enthusiast, and community volunteer. As a young person, I spent my free time helping my neighbors house-sit and care for their pets and animals–from dogs and cats to pygmy goats and cows to rats and horses (and everything in between). When I wasn’t taking care of the animals around me, I was spending my summers as a camp counselor at a not-for-profit summer camp on Lake Wenatchee, looking after kids ages 5-17 years old. These days, I spend my free time volunteering in my community for Mt. Baker Planned Parenthood, advocating for access to reproductive healthcare. I have also helped on projects including distributing clothing and supplies to homeless individuals in my community through HomesNow! NotLater, as well as volunteering on several local political campaigns. Through my volunteerism, I have helped raise tens of thousands of dollars total for organizations, including Mt. Baker Planned Parenthood, the Bellingham Food Bank, and HomesNow! After graduating from Western Washington University, I started working at a local daycare and boarding facility for small dogs where we provide personalized care to small breed dogs of all kinds, including disabled and elderly pets. I have hands-on knowledge about working with pets that are reactive, timid, or even confused to create a safe, engaging, positive, and fun experience for everyone.