An Interview with Shelter Director and President Juana Arnold

Straydog: Juana, you do an incredible amount of work for Straydog and have been dubbed the “heart” of Straydog. What does your position entail?

Juana: I’ve been the Shelter Director for 16 years. Shelter Director means that I am in charge of our whole compound which includes 160 dogs and our staff. I am in charge of the whole thing, the dogs from the first second when I accept and say ‘yes’ to a rescued dog and puppy, and then that particular dog’s life until the end or until it finds its forever home and also the dog food, the vetting, caregiving, safety, health, and progress of each dog’s life.

I take this work super seriously. I respond to each living life that I am in charge of, whether dogs or people. I create and manage our day-to-day schedule to accomplish all our goals between the hours we have to work, based on available staff, volunteers, and campus-wide needs.

If nobody shows up I am prepared somehow to get it done myself; I will get it done no matter what! Our dogs will get fed and taken care of for the day until I figure out a way to get someone in there with me.

Straydog: And what is your favorite part of your work?

Juana: My favorite part of my job is when I get to spend my day outside with our dogs. Most of my days now, I have to worry about meetings, answering emails, thinking about if we have enough funds to cover all expenses, and payroll. I can’t focus on just going outside and spending time caring for our dogs, but when I do get the time it’s the most amazing feeling ever!

I do get to spend part of my day with the inside dogs who are recovering or special conditions, but I love spending my days outside loving on all of our dogs. That takes my mind off the other side of my job which is very stressful. Playing with our dogs and loving on them is relaxing for me and reminds me of who the true heart of Straydog is—our dogs.

Please support Juana’s work
and our loving deserving dogs.