Get to Know Local Pets—And the Families That Love Them

Pets are an important component of families. Chandler Lifestyle talked with local animal owners who share their passion for their pets … and their pets also responded with their own thoughts! 

Asgari/Engle Family + Pets

Orthodontist and co-owner of Sonoran Smile Orthodontics Dr. Shadow Asgari has lived in Chandler for 16 years. Her household includes husband Eric Engle, 10-year-old son Rocky and 11-year-old daughter Ella. Dogs Buster, Rex, Fancy, Molly, Cheeto and Honey share the house with one brave cat named George.

How do you juggle a house with two kids, six dogs and a cat, and do all of your pets get along?
Dr. Asgari: “It’s constant work feeding everyone and taking care of how everyone is eating, feeling and sleeping. My husband handles a lot of the four-legged kids responsibilities and we all share chores. Rocky is in charge of keeping water bowls filled and both Rocky and Ella have to pick up poop!”

Did you get your pets through a pet rescue or did you get them through a breeder?Dr. Asgari: “We got our animals through a combination of breeders and taking them from owners who could no longer care for them.”

What is the biggest struggle living in a house with all those dogs?
George, the cat: “I find my own spots to sleep, far away from the dogs, but I don’t mind playing with the small dogs.” 

Who is in charge of the house?
Rex: “I’m young and energetic. I am in charge by default because the other dogs are simply old and tired!” 

Honey, how come it seems that you’re always in trouble?
Honey: “I’m small and can get into things I’m not supposed to. There are gates up around the house, but I always find a way to squeeze through!”

 

Zurn Family + Zelly

Kari Zurn is a senior loan officer with Academy Mortgage and the founder of YourLoanGal.com. She has lived in Chandler for 20 years and resides with her husband Jack Zurn, daughters Olivia and Izabella, and Shih Tzu, Zelly. The family has had Zelly since she was a puppy.

What do you love about Zelly?
Izabella: “I’ve spent more than half of my life with her and she knows me so well, she even waits for me to walk through the door each day after school. I remember picking her out when she was a baby. She ran right over to me!”

How do you spoil your dog?
Olivia: “We take her to get pampered with Diane at the Dirty Dawg Salon, play with her, cuddle with her, give her treats and just plain love her.”

What is the naughtiest thing you’ve done?
Zelly, a bit shamefully: “I went potty on the carpet.” 

Who’s your favorite person in the house and why?
Zelly: “Mom. She is always sneaking me food!”

Do you have some other pet friends?
Zelly: “My best friend, the chihuahua across the street, used to come over but he moved away last year. I did recently meet a cool cat named Gizmo that lives next door. We hang out a couple of times a week.” 
 

Cousins + Pets

Brianna Openlander and her cousins Olivia and Aiden Mulford are visiting their grandmother in Chandler for the summer and brought their pets along. Briana’s two dogs, Sage and Mattie, were rescues. The Mulfords share their home with dogs Lola and Charlie.

What are some special activities you like to do with Sage and Mattie?
Brianna: “Sage, Mattie and I enjoy our daily morning trips to the dog park. They love ‘pupcups’ from Starbucks after a long morning of play.”

What is one time you were bad and chewed something? 
Sage: “When I first came to my Nana’s house, I chewed a hole in my new kennel and got out. Then, I chewed the bars of a metal kennel enough to squeeze my head through. I ate Nana’s area rug. She was mad!”

Mattie: “I have never chewed anything, I am my mommy’s angel.”

Would you consider making friends with another dog or cat?
Sage and Mattie, in unison: “What’s a cat?”

Did you get your dogs through a rescue or were they gifted to you?
Olivia: “We got Lola as a Christmas gift from our grandparents and we found Charlie on Craigslist.”

Who is in charge of the house?
Lola: “I’m not in charge of the house, but I am in charge of house security. Not a sound outside goes unnoticed! I will give a warning follow by a bunch of ‘Keep it down out there!’ barks. Wait, did someone say treat? No? Where was I? After a few minutes I have Charlie join in with the warnings. My humans really seem to enjoy us yelling at all the noises that they join in with their own yelling, even though their eyes do not look very happy.”