Ashley Gardenier from Southern Paws

by Peter Mansour

What a great second episode of the Do Together Podcast. Ashley Gardenier of Southern Paws is the definition of what it means to be a grass roots charity. Ashley was brutally honest about what it what it takes to run a non-profit.

Like many charities, Ashley didn’t originally set out create a charity hers

elf.  A friend asked her whether she wanted to go down to New Orleans and help with some puppies that needed to be transported to New Jersey.  Being in her twenties and a dog lover, Ashley didn’t think twice.

But when she got down there, she realized that there was a much greater need than she had imagined.  That one transport turned into two.  Eventually, she started doing it full-time. Every hurricane or natural disaster is often followed by Ashley and the Southern Paws crew heading down to rescue more pups.

During Covid, the Southern Paws crew was especially busy.  In one case they were helping relocated animals from a shelter than had part of its roof collapse. 

The resulting picture landed her on the front page of Reddit, where she was labeled the “Laura Croft” of animal shelters.  Sure, Reddit got the story all wrong, but it was still pretty cool.

This episode was hilarious.  Ashley gives a story that is bound to make you cringe and clarifies why she’s much more of a dog person than a cat person.

She also told us a story of how she almost got arrested as a drug dealer for delivering dog food in the wrong truck.

It’s all about the team, and Southern Paws certainly embodies that.  We at ifUiWill truly believe in the power of people doing things together.  Keep up the great work, Ashley.  You and your are doing great work.


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