Welcome to Perfect Pets - We're animal lovers too
Perfect Pets is a digital community for pet lovers and ethical pet service providers. Our platform connects pet lovers with fully registered and verified breeders, shelters, and pet related businesses; a place where adopting, buying, and finding services for pets is safe, and where animal welfare is the highest priority.
Recognized by Hugh Jackman, Jane Goodall, and other respected public figures, Perfect Pets is part of the Fully Stoked company, a purpose-driven business that is committed to supporting animal welfare initiatives, rescue groups, and wildlife conservation. Find out more about our work and how we help.
We believe that good people are at the root of change, and behind the Perfect Pets website is a dedicated team that cares deeply about all animals, our environment, and our planet. From our founder to the web developers and experts who share their knowledge about pets, we have a wealth of talent, experience, and above all, a commitment to making the companion animal industry healthier. Thank you to the invaluable contributions of our team including John, Joep Meertens, Katrin Hewitt, Rose Crane, Katrin Hewitt, Jacob Lawrence, David Pye, Colin O'mullane, Eliza Ackland and Tara. Perfect Pets wouldn't be what it is today without you.
About the founder
Maria Arnold, BSc. Hons, wildlife conservationist, founder
Photo: Maria at home with Marnee & Charlie
Maria Arnold, BSc, is a wildlife conservationist, visionary, animal lover and the founder of Perfect Pets. While working as a primate conservationist in Uganda and Congo, Maria saw up close the challenges faced by conservation groups because of unreliable and inadequate funding. After returning to Australia, she decided to dedicate her professional skills and abilities to raising funding for animal welfare and conservation projects. Her efforts have helped chimpanzee conservation projects in Africa, the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society, and the Australian Bush Heritage Fund. Since launching Perfect Pets, support and donations have reached many hardworking and dedicated groups such as Pets in the Park, Greyhound Rescue and Bangalow Koalas.
A pioneer in social enterprise, Maria believes there is more to a responsible business than just donating some of your profits. “It's critical that the operational side of the business upholds ethical practices as well, no cutting corners or compromising for the sake of profits... Every decision we make aims to improve how we care for and interact with our animal friends. This is always our number one priority."
Maria founded Perfect Pets to address a very real gap in the companion pet industry. Her vision of creating a digital community for ethical pet service providers, including breeders, rescue groups, vets, groomers and other services, is bold, ambitious and very much needed. The relationship between pets and people can thrive or fail. Success can depend on factors such as ensuring a correct match; sourcing well-bred and well-cared for pets through ethical channels; and pet care education that covers management, breeding and welfare. Understanding this, Maria is committed to developing long-term solutions to address many challenges facing the companion animal industry, including surplus pets and poor breeding practices.
Under Maria's leadership, Perfect Pets has become one of Australia’s most trusted sites for pet lovers, with over 9 million visitors to date and a large and growing subscriber base. Perfect Pets plays a pivotal role in reaching, educating and connecting people who are committed to a kind, just and sustainable future for pets and people.
Having lived with Cattle Dogs most of her life, nowadays Maria enjoys the company of Marnee – a Lagotto Romagnolo, and Teddy – an Australian Kelpie. “ Marnee came to us when she was six and needed a home, so it was really by chance - and luck, as I’d been quite intrigued by lagotti when I first started learning about them. She’s a stunning girl in every way. Teddy is the first puppy I’ve ever had – he is smart, a lot of fun, and I’m sure teaching me more than I’m teaching him! As for my lifelong adoration of, and addiction to Australin Cattle Dogs…. I’m sure there’ll be another one in my life one day. Overall there must be something about working dogs in general! “
Dr. Alicia Kennedy, BSc BVMS Veterinarian
Photo: Dr Lissi with her Cairn Terrier Billi
Dr. Alicia Kennedy, also known as Dr. Lissi, is a practicing veterinarian and the founder of Cherished Pets - the world’s first B-corporation veterinary practice. Alicia is nationally recognised as an industry leader in the emerging field of veterinary social work (VSW) and advocacy for the human animal bond. In 2021 she was the recipient of an AMP future changemakers grant, to advance this purpose and embed VSW across Australia's veterinary and health service sectors.
Dr Lissi has devoted her life to animals and the people who love them. A vet of over 35 years, she offers community veterinary services as well as palliative care for pets entering the final phase of life.
A human-animal bond expert, Dr Lissi is fascinated and driven by the role that pets play in the lives of vulnerable people. Through the Cherished Pets Foundation, she works with elderly and disabled pet owners who still live in their own homes in the Geelong and Bellarine community to ensure their pets are well cared for. Recognising this important work, the Victorian State Government recently awarded funding to the Cherished Pets Foundation which will help meet a rising demand for crisis pet care. See More support for vulnerable pet owners for details.
Alicia and Perfect Pets founder, Maria, met when they supported Jane Goodall's tour in 2006. They immediately hit it off and the pair went on to help set up the Jane Goodall Institute Australia. They have continued to work together and Alicia's experience and contribution has been integral in the ongoing development of Perfect Pets.
Alicia enjoying a walk with her dogs, Herald Sun Article >>
Dr Truda Straede, Phd.
Photo: Truda at home with Brethil, Australian Mist
Truda became a Pedigree Cat breeder in 1976, combining her ecological concerns with her interest in cat breeding, she developed her idea for an ‘environmentally friendly’ pet cat into the popular, all Australian breed, the Australian Mist, Australia’s only homegrown breed.
Truda served terms as a member of feline management committees in both New South Wales (NSW) and Victoria (VIC) and in both cases has been involved in Breeds and Breeding Regulations Sub Committees, and as a member of Feline Health and Veterinary Sub Committees. In 2001 she was awarded the NSW Cat Fanicers Association's first Distinguished Service Award for her services to the NSW Cat Fancy.
Truda has edited the RAS Cat Control Journal, and written extensively on cat health, genetics and management, including her breeder’s handbook ‘Breeding Cats ..... A Practical Guide.’ Truda has represented cat governing bodies in both NSW and VIC on a variety of semi governmental advisory committees, including those concerned with developing an emergency plan for evacuating companion animals, and the development of Codes of Practice within the Animal Trades Regulations of Protection Of Cruelty To Animals Act and was a member of the Working Party advising on the development of the NSW Companion Animal Act, implemented in mid 1997, and a foundation member of its Board.
Now a resident of Victoria, Truda continues to run a large breeding cattery in West Gippsland, pursue her interests as a Cat Judge, Australian Mist and Maine Coon breeder and exhibitor, and continues to write cat articles for magazines and specialist books on the Australian Mist. Most recently Truda has focussed on improving the quality of life of pedigree cats through the continuing education of fellow breeders within Australian National Cats Inc. (ANCATS), her national feline organisation.
Ever committed to animal welfare and ethical breeding standards and practices, Truda brings invaluable expertise to the Perfect Pets' mission.
Currently Truda shares her house with a very old retired Aussi Mist queen, Yum Yum, and a young lady, Raffia, as well as an ever changing tide of Mist and Coon kittens as they learn about living in a house over the last couple of weeks before they go to their forever homes. Truda also enjoys the kitten-hood of cats kept for future breeding, until she reluctantly moves them into their permanent stud house, or queen colony. Miss Raffia declined the honour of being so relocated and made so much fuss that she has become a permanent resident of the house and is quite convinced that Truda is her own personal property!!
Natalie Davey, BSc (Hons), Dip Ed, Grad Dip Ed Pub, Grad Cert Animal Welfare, Cert III Dog Behaviour and Training
Photo: Natalie and Molly
Natalie is the founder of Mojema Canine Relationship Coaching, a business she created to support people to build stronger relationships with their dog. Natalie focuses on the relationships we have with dogs because it is the key to a solid foundation for living and working together as a team. Her goal is to help dogs live better lives by promoting fear free and reward-based training techniques and philosophies, and creating safe, supportive, and positive spaces conducive to learning. Natalie is a qualified dog trainer of 10 years, she is the first internationally certified Relationship Assessment Tool (RAT) Instructor in Australia and is a Fear Free and Human-Animal Bond Certified Professional.
Natalie particularly loves helping puppies get off to a great start in life as an experienced puppy school instructor. A well designed and delivered puppy development program is critical for young puppies and for teaching people how they can support and introduce their puppy to the human world. Another area of dog training of particular interest to Natalie is working with dogs and relationships that need special care, such as dogs that find the world overwhelming, scary or just too exciting. She finds it rewarding to work with these dog-human partnerships and see the difference that information, support and encouragement can make. Just like Perfect Pets Founder, Maria, Natalie is also drawn to working breed dogs. Although not designed to be companion pets, this is where these dogs can find themselves. Natalie introduces training and enrichment exercises to help these dogs adapt as companions, giving them opportunities to use their brains and fulfil their urge to work.
Before creating Mojema, Natalie’s career was in education, scientific communication and publishing. She finds that she can readily transpose useful skills from these roles to help people understand and bond with their dogs. Natalie will be drawing on these talents to produce guides, information resources and tips on training, behaviour and relationship building with dogs for the Perfect Pets community.
Natalie lives on the coast in regional Victoria with her working breed cross, rescue dog Molly. Molly was once described to her as a “cracker” of a dog, which is a most fitting description. Natalie credits Molly with teaching her many lessons but the most important has been to see the individual, whether canine or human. If we see who they really are, not what we want or expect them to be, it changes the game.
Want to get involved?
We’re always looking to work and partner with others who are also fighting for a better world for animals. If you, your business or organisation would like to help and be part of one of our initiatives, or if your group or shelter could benefit from our support please contact us.
Feedback - We welcome your feedback so that we can keep improving.
Volunteer - If you're interested in volunteering please get in touch and tell us about your key strengths and skills (e.g. technical skills, IT, graphic design, photography, creative writing, etc), and if you have any prior volunteering experience (e.g. What organisations and how long did you volunteer with them for?).
Work with us - if you have the skills, passion, and commitment to help us on our mission, please get in touch and tell us about yourself and how you think you could contribute.