Hey I'm Desiree, the co-owner and co-founder of The Piggy Place. My journey started out a little different, in my hometown of Toledo, Ohio. I was a full time dance teacher and freelance photographer/videographer. I received my bachelors in film and video and have always tried to tie my passion of capturing images and videos into anything I was doing. In 2016, my husband and I moved to the city of angels and we love the home we've built here. With Los Angeles having so much to offer, I tried my hand at a few different things, such as going on a nationwide tour photographing dance competitions and even doing some background acting work in television and movies - when in Rome, right? When Covid hit, it shook the world. With
everything left in uncertainty - I turned to a more stable job, so I began working at a pet store. After rising up to a management position, my attention turned to the pet care department, more specifically - guinea pigs! That's when my whole world changed. Although I had a guinea pig as a child, I didn’t quite remember the care required, but I knew something didn't sit right with how they were being cared for.
I began researching and acquiring any knowledge I could, which turned into me teaching my co-workers. I soon got a reputation as the "crazy guinea pig lady," all in good fun. And then there was Piggy Smalls... A piggy returned by a customer who said he was "TOO LOUD." It was love at first sight! That's when I began to truly learn about guinea pig care. More research ensued and I discovered my local guinea pig rescue that provided me even more knowledge. When a guinea pig in grave shape arrived at the pet store, I knew I needed to get him proper care and help immediately. I took him to the rescue where they brought him back to health. This was a game changer for me. One thing led to another and I eventually became the operations manager of that same rescue. So much was gained by these two positions. I now have eight guinea pigs of my own. With three of them needing serious rehabilitation, I did everything in my power to make them better and I am happy to report all eight of the piggies are all healthy now!
Hi ya'll I'm Alison, the co-owner and co-founder of The Piggy Place. I grew up in Los Angeles, CA and spent some time in Lake Havasu, AZ. I have always been very drawn towards animals despite being raised in a Chilean household with my grandparents who didn't really care for them. Although I have a huge passion for animals, growing up my focus was on art and my education. At first I took some pre-vet classes but eventually decided to commit myself to one major, completely unrelated to animal care. I received a Bachelor's in Deaf Studies at CSUN and hope to go back to school become an interpreter, while working on animal rescue and care. I decided to pursue a job in animal rescue after hearing about my local guinea pig rescue needing help. I just showed up one day and asked for a job or to at least volunteer. Next thing I know I'm working with all kinds of animals, meeting amazing new people, and gaining so much knowledge and experience.
I did not have much experience with guinea pigs until I started working at the guinea pig rescue. I learned SO much about so many different animals, including pigs, horses, and chickens! I quickly fell in love with guinea pigs and did everything I could to learn about their care and absorb as much information as possible. Having the opportunity to work so closely with other guinea pig experts and having access to hundreds of guinea pigs, I realized that there is so much misinformation out there and there is still so much to be learned about these little guys. I'm committed to researching more about guinea pigs and helping others learn about proper care. I'm grateful to now be a part of the guinea pig community and be a part of the much needed change!
DISCLAIMER: We are NOT veterinarians and do NOT provide medical care. We have experience in a variety of health concerns that affect guinea pigs after working in a rescue environment. We are able to refer you to a variety of resources and medical professionals that can help if we spot an issue you may not be aware of!
After working at our local rescue, we realized how much we truly loved working with guinea pigs and how important rescuing was to us. It's difficult seeing all the misinformation out there. Many people get their information from pet stores who often don't know the first thing about piggies, which leads to new owners providing improper care. It really motivated us to try and help do something about it by creating another resource for guinea pig owners to use. We started off making cute, fun Youtube videos of our own piggies and soon became inspired to think bigger. We've decided to create our own business and resources by providing grooming and pet sitting services.
Grooming your own piggy can be scary, especially for those not used to handling their piggies. We aim to rescue more guinea pigs, help teach people about proper guinea pig care, and share the valuable resources that we depend on for our own piggies! Currently, our goal is to provide grooming and pet sitting services in a way that makes the experience as pleasant and as stress-free as possible for owners and their piggies. Cutting nails, grooming, boar cleaning, even handling these little guys can be intimidating, especially for first time piggy owners. We don't want people to feel overwhelmed and give up, because so many of these little guys need loving families and homes right now. We hope to find a way to bring people a sense of comfort and confidence when caring for their piggy by sharing our experiences, research, past mistakes, and current knowledge, which is growing every day.
Our goal doesn't stop at baths and nail clippings...We hope to eventually open our own boarding facility and rescue. As the popularity of guinea pigs continues to increase, so does the amount of guinea pigs being abandoned. So many rescues and shelters are struggling to keep up, and we want to aide in getting these piggies, especially those who were once given up on, a chance. We hope more and more people will continue to look to shelters and rescues when adopting guinea pigs, rather than relying on the "convenience" of pet stores who often give out sick piggies and are a major contributor to the problems guinea pigs are facing today. We take a lot of inspiration from others in the guinea pig community and are forever grateful for the resources and experience given to us by the rescue we worked at. They do their best to save as many lives as possible, and we want to help save even more!