Employee Spotlight: Ciara Birley

At PetRelocation, our team is built up of amazing people from all kinds of backgrounds. When Ciara, our domestic relocation coordinator, wanted a change from her veterinary work, she came to PetRelocation and we're so happy she did! Ciara brings a smile to the face of everyone she works with. Her genuine love of animals and their wellbeing shines through everything she does. So, let's take a moment to get to know Ciara a little better! 

Why did you decide to apply to work at PetRelocation?

I was ready to change up my career in veterinary medicine but had no idea where to start without leaving the animal world completely. I just happened to come across an opening with PetRelocation online. I had originally applied a year before actually getting my job. Shortly after I submitted my application and had been talking with HR, I had an unexpected surgery. The timing wasn’t right. About six months later after I had healed, I couldn’t stop thinking about the idea of working at PetRelocation, and clearly the timing was perfect because here I am!

 

 

What was your biggest surprise when you joined the world of pet shipping?

The realistic cost it takes to move pets across the country! There really is not a way to get around paying a bit when moving internationally. I had always seen the expensive vet work side of things but hadn’t even considered costs of import permits and all the other connecting pieces.

Does any move story from your time here stand out in your mind?

I had a sad but touching move from a client who was at their end of life from illness and had spent a lot of time planning the adoption of their three very loving pups. One of them went to go live with a littermate they happened to keep in contact with, and the other two joined another home with someone else who had fought against the same illness and just lost their companion animal. All were driven cross-country and were treated like absolute royalty the entire trip (as I believe all of our animals are).

 

Ciara and the pigs at Central Texas Pig rescueCentral Texas Pig rescue

Ciara volunteers with Central Texas Pig Rescue

 

What piece of advice would you give to someone who was just starting to plan a move with their pet?

Plan as much as you can! Give your pet time to adjust to their crates, make sure you have buffer room for possible re-tests on vet work. Plan, plan, plan!

Tell us about your own pets. When did you meet and what are/is their personality like?

I have a kitty names Edgar Allen Potato, a sweet little Persian with pumpkin orange eyes. A few months after Mr. Beans Man—the senior Himalayan kitty I rescued, passed away—I was aching for another cat in my life. I had just had surgery, and everyone kept telling me to wait. The vet I was working for said “Here is the deal. You cannot get another cat UNLESS you find a little black and white Persian kitty with pumpkin orange eyes”. That same day, my little guy popped up on a PetFinder rescue alert. I honestly didn’t even have a permanent home yet when I met him, but he was in such bad shape I took him in with a fellow vet tech and nursed him to health.

 

Edgar Allen Potatociara and her cat, edgar

Ciara and her cat, Edgar Allen Potato 

 

We love Austin and the culture here at PetRelo headquarters. Who would you say has the best food in town?

I am vegan and gluten-free vegan, so my opinion is going to be different than the rest of our team. Pizza is for sure Lil Nonna’s, tacos from Vegan Nom, feel-good food from Casa De Luz, and everything else from Bouldin Creek Café!

We’re all about travel here. Where are you dying to go?

I am dying to go anywhere and everywhere! I have a list of trails and campsites in Texas I am trying to hit by the end of summer. I have never been able to leave the country. I have family I want to visit in Germany, friends to see in Canada, parent's birth town in Ireland, and so many other places I want to experience!

You’re involved in a local publication, right? Tell us a little about that! 

My friends and I run a local magazine called Decussate! It is an intersectional feminist passion project with a focus on humans doing what they do best. When we find someone who we think will fit the theme based on projects they are working on or passions they have we sort of let them decide what about themselves they want to share. It is amazing to create with my best friends and to connect with some many different types of people.

 

 

Anything else you’d like to add about PetRelocation or yourself?

Just a gal in my mid-twenties just trying to find the balance between getting it together and remembering there are many lessons left to go before I have anything (at all) figured out. In the meantime, I am just focusing on showing up with all the love for myself, my relationships, and the lovely creatures of the planet.

Thanks, Ciara!  Find out more about working at PetRelocation on our Team page.

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