S'wooft team members come from all different backgrounds and each have a unique fit with this job and the company as a whole. Elizabeth was actually a S'wooft client for a while before coming on board as one of our professional pet care providers. We had been caring for her pups and were able to see firsthand what a loving and responsible pet owner she is, so we were happy to welcome her to the team! (...after completing all of our regular screening protocols, of course.)
Surprisingly, Elizabeth did not grow up in a household full of pets, but she grew up in a household full of children – 12 children to be exact. As a child, Elizabeth wasn’t allowed to have a pet since her father was not particularly fond of cats or dogs ("or kids, for that matter! But us kids eventually grew on him.").
Because Elizabeth spent her childhood pet-less, she really couldn’t wait to get her first furry friend once she moved out of her family home and got her own apartment at the age of 19. After visiting a local shelter in Dekalb, IL, Elizabeth brought home a tiny, black female kitten that she named Eva. Thus began her life as a fur baby mom and advocate.
Eva not only taught Elizabeth how to care for a living creature besides herself, but the experience strengthened Elizabeth’s independence and her sense of responsibility since she oversaw every aspect of Eva’s life, including Eva’s adoption process and overall health. Eva also provided Elizabeth with stability, companionship and continuity during a time in her life when so many things were changing.
Elizabeth obviously adored Eva, but she wasn’t partial to solely having feline companions. Elizabeth adopted her first pooch, Taffy, a senior rescue Husky mix who had just retired at the tender age of 10 from a career as a lead sled dog. Having lived her entire life outdoors, Taffy took immediately to curling up on the couch indoors and having her own personal quiet and warm space to relax. She was a sweet and calm dog who rarely barked. Taffy’s time with Elizabeth was unfortunately short, but deeply impactful.
We asked Elizabeth to tell us about how her love for pets led her to S’wooft.
Why did you choose to work for S’wooft? How long have you been with S’wooft?
I started out as a S'wooft client. When I moved from Logan Square to the far West Side, I needed a dog walker and discovered S'wooft! Jump ahead a few years, I decided to leave my job as a Spanish teacher and saw that S'wooft was hiring. Since I already knew the high quality of service they provided, there was no question that I wanted to be a part of that team! I have been with S’wooft for 8 months.
When it comes to working with animals and her decision to choose this journey, Elizabeth loves that animals are honest, loving and happy. Being a dog walker, she couldn’t ask for better colleagues. Since Elizabeth is also the proud owner of 4 dogs and 4 cats at home, we asked Elizabeth to share with us some dog walking tips.
I would suggest asking neighbors who they recommend because if they trust the company for their own critters, that usually speaks volumes! I would also suggest remembering that each dog is an individual and what works for one dog may not work for another. You need to observe with patience and learn the likes and dislikes of each one.
Although Elizabeth’s world is clearly filled and fulfilled with pets, you’d never guess that she is allergic to dogs and cats. Elizabeth has fostered over 100 dogs and cats over the last 12 years! There are numerous memories of her fosters that stand out, but the most memorable are the pregnant dogs that she had in her care and later gave birth in her home.
Another fun fact that Elizabeth shared with us is her passion for dancing specifically salsa, bachata and merengue. After all, this is how she met her husband! (Bonus fun fact, there is another Latin dance enthusiast on the team - can you guess who?)
As we at S’wooft strongly believe in the importance of the personalized care of each pet, so does Elizabeth. Not every pet operate in the same way - each has their own individual qualities that make them unique. While providing ongoing care and learning these unique qualities, Elizabeth and other S’wooft team members are better able to meet the needs of each pet in their care.
Learn more about Elizabeth and the rest of Team S’wooft by visiting Our Team!