The History of Nona Paws
I’ve always been a pet-lover, but my career path didn’t initially take me down that route. After graduating from Grand Valley State University in Michigan with my BS in Psychology and M.Ed in School Counseling, I moved to Florida to begin my career as a School Counselor. I worked at Lake Nona Middle School as a School Counselor for 11 years and for many years was very active in the triathlon community competing in several half and full Ironman triathlons. This led to several injuries including hip surgery. I had to seriously rethink if my body could handle that level of activity anymore. One day after hip surgery my mom said to me, "You should go on a walk. A short walk. Like what normal people do." I told her that that was boring and I would only want to go for a walk if I had a dog to walk. And that is how it began.
While Nona Paws started as more of a hobby for me to stay active, it quickly transformed into my passion and career. I became Pet CPR and First Aid Certified and developed relationships with other pet care professionals. The more the business grew, the more I noticed the need for trustworthy pet-sitting, dog-walking and pet-care services for the Lake Nona community. This need combined with my passion has led me to expand by bringing on the most qualified pet-service providers to assist me. My team is comprised of first-rate professionals who have undergone extensive background checks so you can rest assured knowing your pets are under proper care. We understand that not any two households or pets are the same, which is why we offer customized services to fit you and your pet's unique needs. No matter your personal-pet care plan, you will have peace of mind knowing that your pet can stay in the safety and comfort of your home and maintain their routine while you are away.
Welcome to the Nona Paws family. We can't wait to meet you!
Founder & Owner
Our trusted team.
Your Nona Paws Pet Sitting Team
L to R Top: Sara, Rachel, Melissa G., Elizabeth
Bottom: Kelsey, Brenda, Katie, Sarah
Rachel comes to you with over 25 years of pet sitting experience. She comes highly recommended from past clients! As one client shared, “She is very detail oriented, reliable and so caring! My dog always loves when she comes to visit!!” She is knowledgeable with administering medications including pills and injections. When Rachel isn’t pet sitting she enjoys spending time with her husband, Mike of 28 years, daughter Morgan and their 3 dogs and 4 goats.
Kelsey grew up in Maryland and graduated from Salisbury University with a BS in Biology and BS in Marine and Environmental Science. She relocated to Orlando to work at Sea World where she helped train, feed, and assist in the care of sea lions, otters, sting rays, and fish. A previous employer shared, “Kelsey has always been one of my favorites. She really cares about the animals. When they are sick she really takes it to heart and puts everything she has into making them well.” Now a Lake Nona resident, Kelsey enjoys spending her spare time with her husband Roger, cat Raven, and dogs Summer and Tadashi.
Mandy grew up in South Florida and graduated from University of Central Florida with a Masters in Special Education. Mandy always keeps the team laughing and has a mean pickleball game! Katie plays with her often at the USAT! Mandy enjoys home schooling her 5 children, triathlons, camping, gardening, cooking, and spending time with her husband Chris, their family and dog Opal.
Amy grew up on Florida’s Space Coast and graduated from the University of Central Florida with a B.A. in Hospitality Management. Amy enjoys home schooling her 3 girls, fostering children, cruising and baking/decorating cakes. In her spare time she enjoys being a part of the stage kids ministry at her church. She also loves playing board games with her husband Tim and snuggling with their new puppy.
Julie grew up in Miami then moved to Orlando in elementary school. She currently attends the University of Central Florida and is pursuing a BS in Biology. Her goal is to work in the veterinarian field. She is currently a Veterinarian Assistant and has experience with animal holds, injections and assists with surgeries. Her employer shared that she is a team player, critical thinker and extremely reliable. She enjoys volunteering at Pet Alliance, figure skating and spending time with her cat O’Malley.
Angela grew up in North Carolina and graduated from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a BA in Psychology. She then went on to earn her M.Ed in School Counseling at Liberty University. She is currently a School Counselor for Orange County Public Schools. Angela first started out as a Nona Paws Pet Sitting client for her 2 cats and dog. Angela enjoys watching college sports and spending time with her husband Tripp and their 4 children.
Valeria grew up in Venezuela and moved to Orlando in 2016. She currently attends Valencia College and is working towards a career in Interior Design or Architecture. She currently works at Walt Disney World in their Reservations Department. In her spare time she enjoys working out, catching up on her favorite TV shows and hanging out with her 2 dogs Balto and Hulky.
Olivia grew up on a farm in Copley, Ohio where she helped her family take care of cows, pigs, chickens, goats, and every other farm animal! Olivia graduated from the University of Akron with a BS in Education and Masters in Exercise Physiology. She has worked for many years in a hospital Cardiac Rehab. In her spare time she enjoys shopping, walking, watching soccer, and spend time with her 2 siamese cats, golden doodle, 3 children and husband Brian.
Kaitlyn grew up in St. Cloud, FL and currently attends the University of Central Florida where she is studying biology and zoology. She enjoys volunteering at Chase Animal Sanctuary where she assists the lemurs and deer. Kaitlyn enjoys animals and weightlifting with a passion! She is a National weightlifter as she placed 3rd at Nationals this year and was a Florida State Runner Up. Her next goal is to work towards being on Team USA Weightlifting. When she isn't working with animals or weightlifting, she enjoys painting and spending time with her 4 dogs, 3 cats and leopard gecko.
Alexa was born in New York but grew up in Orlando. She currently works at Advent Health assisting patients with insurance questions. She also attends Valencia College seeking a career in Sonography. Alexa enjoys visiting restaurants, shopping and spending time with her Cavapoo puppy. When she isn't studying or pet sitting Alexa can be found at the park with her four- legged pal, Max!
Meet Kelly M.!
Kelly grew up in Greeley, Colorado and relocated to Orlando to work in the Disney College Program. Kelly graduated from University of Central Florida with a Bachelors in Education with an emphasis in Biology. She then went on to work as a Biology teacher for many years until committing her time to raise her two daughters. Kelly first started out as a Nona Paws Pet Sitting client for her 4 dogs. Kelly enjoys spending time with her friends and going to the theme parks with her children and husband Faustino.
Scarlett was born in Puerto Rico and grew up in St. Cloud, Florida. She currently attends the University of Central Florida pursuing a BS in Biology. After graduation she hopes to pursue a career in Zoo Keeping! In her spare time she enjoys reading, playing video games, and volunteering at a local wildlife preserve. Scarlett has many fur babies- 2 dogs, 5 cats and a Beta fish!
Sara comes to you with over 15 years of experience as a Registered Veterinary Technician! She is well versed in administering subcutaneous fluids, giving injections and medications. She is also a student at the University of Central Florida seeking to become a Physician Assistant. While she is originally from California, she relocated to Florida in 2008 with her husband who works as a Network Engineer at Advent Health. She enjoys spending her free time with her husband Michael, 2 cats (Havoc and Roo), dog Scout, and going to Disney.
Meghan grew up in Cape Coral, Florida and recently moved to Orlando to attend the University of Central Florida. Meghan plans to pursue a BS in Biology and work towards becoming a large animal Veterinarian. Meghan brings relevant experience working with animals as she is a Certified Veterinary Assistant. Meghan has a fun assortment of pets, including a horse, a dog, a rabbit and a bird, named Storm! In her spare time Meghan enjoys horse back riding, archery, and dancing.
Madison is a St. Cloud native as she has lived there all her life. She graduated from the University of Central Florida with a Bachelors of Arts in Creative Writing and a Certification in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL). She aspires to become a English Teacher abroad. A current pet sitting client shared, "Madison is the BEST!! I'm pretty sure Gunner is disappointed when our vacay is over because he loves her so much." In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her 3 cats and bearded dragon, reading, music, and hanging out with friends.
Meet Kelly H.!
Kelly grew up in a rural town in Michigan and was surrounded by animals at a young age. She studied Communications and Psychology at Michigan State University and Eastern Michigan University. She moved to Orlando in 2000. With a passion for learning, Kelly attended Florida College of Health to study Massage Therapy. She has been a Licensed Massage Therapist for over 21 years! She also earned a license as a Registered Pharmacy Technician through the University of Central Florida. In her spare time, Kelly is passionate about reading, long walks/shopping trips, and volunteering as much as possible. Kelly enjoys spending her days with her husband of 28 years, Loren, their daughter Chloe, and their adorable dog Bruce.
Izzy grew up in South Florida and is an undergraduate Biology major at the University of Central Florida. After graduation in the fall of 2023, she plans to pursue veterinary school. She enjoys spending time with her dogs, Walter and Stanley. When she isn't studying or pet sitting, Izzy enjoys playing video games, spending time with friends and exploring fun foodie spots in Orlando.