Tanya is a veterinarian technician to Dr. Kristen at the American Samoa Veterinarian Clinic. She moved to American Samoa in 1982 with her family after her dad, a marine biologist, wanted to start a fish market on the island.
Tanya has had animals all her life, including, but not limited to: hamsters, a rat named Templeton, crawdads, lizards, turtles, birds, dogs and cats. She began her schooling in animal science on the island at the American Samoa Community College. She started working at the clinic in 1990. She then moved back to the mainland to complete her studies. Not long after, her dad had a heart attack and she moved back home to the island to care for him.
In 2011, the Veterinary Clinic was shut down and everyone was referred to Tanya because she had a pet supply business. While she was always involved with animal welfare on the island, including volunteering for veterinarians who came to American Samoa to volunteer themselves, Tanya was officially hired to the clinic in 2013.
She currently owns 18 dogs and seven cats. This number is most likely to grow as Tanya often takes in those animals that others do not want. She is also fostering 3 puppies.