We, Jodie and Grace, met when we were coordinating a Recovery Programme in Wandsworth; supporting people in long term unemployment back into work and volunteering. During this time, not only did we become firm friends, but we also realised we had the same love ( no not Ryan Gosling) this love was far deeper: DOGS. We started with laminating pictures of childhood crushes holding dogs (see left; don't judge) working up to t-shirts and dog parties until we realised enough was enough, we had to sit down and make a plan. We both, separately, have been dog walkers but also had always wanted to run a dog day care. It was clear from all our experience that there was not enough premium and bespoke dog day care spaces. We also realised there was no ethical and socially conscious options available for dog owners.
In our previous job, supporting people in recovery into work, we saw time and time again how powerful animals were for people suffering from no confidence, anxiety and low mood. When we tried to find volunteering opportunities for people with animals there were none! This is when Paws & Pause was born. We offer volunteering placements for people who are in recovery from low level mental health in order to help people gain the skills they need to return to work. Not only does Paws & Pause support our volunteers but it also means all your dogs get much more attention and checks than other day cares are able to give.
Our mission is to provide a dog day care service that provides a bespoke space with highly trained staff and large staff to dog ratio. That is also socially responsible and
provides sustainable volunteer placements for people in recovery.
Delivering a high end, easy to communicate with service, to customers
Provide a caring and loving environment for the dogs
Ensure the highest safety and welfare standards for dogs
Create a modern and efficient day care experience for owners
Engage with people who are long term unemployed
Reduce unemployment levels amongst those living with mental illness
Alternative to mainstream employment and recovery and routes
Creates an immediate cause and effect promoting positive behaviour from animals
Hi I am Grace, one half of Paws & Pause, below is a little bit about me.
My two big passions are mental health and of course dogs! I have always loved dogs and as an only child my Golden Labrador, Jack, was my constant companion. I just adored him. It is very difficult to be bored or lonely with a dog by your side. It was during studying for my masters that the power of dogs really hit me. I was having a rough time battling anxiety and stress and decided to start dog walking. This was the best decision I have ever made, it transformed my mood and cemented my love for canine companions even more. Since then, I have continued to dog walk/ sit for many families in the south London area. Having bonded with so many dogs i truly understand how precious they are. They are one of the family and should always be treated as such.
Since 2015 I have been working supporting people in long term unemployment to find sustainable work. I have experience in supporting people in recovery from mental health, substance use and homelessness. I am at my most happy empowering people and also when with a dog. At Paws & Pause i get to combine both!
Dogs are my absolutely passion. I have grown up with and around dogs from a young age, and I have experience of handling all breeds and sizes, from dachshunds to mastiffs, I am passionate about them all! As an experienced dog sitter, boarder and walker, you can be confident that your pet is ingood hands.
I love the work that I do, and I am very proud to support to people who are struggling with anxiety, depression and related issues through canine therapy-based training and care. For me, dogs have always loved me unconditionally and simply make me feel better when I am around them, leaving
little room to worry about what else might be playing on my mind, which is why I strongly feel that dogs can create a positive environment to learn and grow and try new things.
Since 2013 I have worked with adults within the homelessness, mental health and addiction field and I have built up a vast array of experience, ranging from running a Mentoring programme, creating a ‘Business Start-Up’ project and most recently coordinating a Recovery programme in partnership with an NHS trust alongside Grace.
Get to know more about our team today.