KAREN McCARTHY MA (Canine Behaviour, Pyschology & Training) MCFBA MGODT APDTNZ

Originally from the UK but being mainly raised in New Zealand has given Karen experiences in the dog world that are unique. Having been around dogs from a young age, she always dreamed of letting her passion become her life’s work.  Breed showing may have been where Karen started but this soon developed into a passion for training and teaching which then led to taking on a professional mobile dog grooming business.  Using her professional business experience meant that the service was able to grow by adding a grooming salon, all levels of training classes, private consultations and then expanding into the daycare service.

Having travelled to learn more about training and attend seminars and workshops in other countries gave Karen the opportunity to work in the UK dog industry for a few years. Having brought her dogs with her meant that she was able to represent New Zealand with her Gordon Setter Connor twice at Cruft's Dog Show both in 2007 & 2008 in two disciplines for both years, International Heelwork to Music and Agility competitions - a first for NZ! And Vienna followed in her father's pawsteps in the Crufts International Agility in 2010 & 2011. However being in the limelight isn't new to Karen as she has also been profiled in the NZ national media of newspapers, television and radio in relation to dogs and training, including appearing on NZ’s Tux Wonderdogs and being interviewed by the BBC here in the UK. And Connor was also the very first dog in New Zealand to gain any kind of Canine Good Citizen certificate with the NZ Kennel Club, and the first Gordon Setter in NZ to attain Championship status (breed showing) with CDX (Companion Dog Excellent) and ADX (Agility Dog Excellent) titles.

Karen has completed a Master's Degree in Canine Psychology, Behaviour and Training and also gained many certificates and attended workshops from study and experience in New Zealand, the USA and the UK.  Her experience led her to being invited and becoming a full member of the Canine & Feline Behaviour Association, and is currently adding to her certification by working towards becoming a Kennel Club Accredited Instructor. The caring method that Karen uses in her grooming has also meant her becoming an internationally published author (Grooming Book). A personal dedication and innovative style gives Karen the enthusiasm to enhance the dog's world and also the motivation to take the human/canine relationship into the 21st century. And altough Karen has competed in many facets of the dog sport's world over the last 36 years she still keeps the role of the pet dog firmly in mind as her dogs have and always will be firstly pet dogs.


Vienna travelled over to the rainbow bridge just after she turned 13, a female Gordon Setter who accompanied Karen just about everywhere. She grew up travelling with her father (Connor) when visiting all the dogs to be groomed in the mobile grooming service but was also a welcoming face for dogs at the salon and in training classes, and has played an integral part in helping to rehabilitate some dogs that have lacked appropriate dog language skills. She trained in agility and heelwork to music but her main role in life had been to show other dogs how to communicate better and thus have more fun. Vienna was born in NZ and has travelled to the UK twice after spending a year back in NZ visiting all her friends. Vienna represented NZ in Crufts in the International Agility twice and the International Heelwork to Music Freestyle event once - although very competent at what she can do she also has times where she chose when and where to show off those skills. Regardless of how well she did (or didn't) in competition she was still fun to work with. A client once coined Vienna as "every day is a good day for Vienna" - and it remained true right to the end


Aston joined the team in December 2010 and certainly testedd Karen's knowledge and experience in raising a puppy into a well mannered and sociable dog. As a puppy Aston was qualifying to become a hairdresser as he often sat behind Karen nibbling on her hair when she was blow drying her own hair; but now he spends his day supervising any grooming of other dogs that is being done. When not in hairdressing mode Aston loves to play and has recently discovered how much fun water can be although has still not quite ventured into swimming properly yet - well apart from when he fell in a couple of times. Aston now at 6 years old loves to play at retrieve and agility and in general loves to work - Karen can honestly say he is probably the best dog in recall that she has ever lived with.

Paws in the City - New Zealand
Karen grew this business from small beginnings but knew that it was important to bring other passionate people into the business in order for it to grow in the direction for creating the best canine centre available, it's what allowed Karen to share this business into the UK. The Paws businesses in both NZ and the UK will forever be linked so that we can utilise the dog industry experiences from one end of the world to the other.