Known for her paintings and sketches of dogs, she lived in Bristol until 1930, when she moved to London following her husband's death. Using pastels, pencil, ink, pen and oil Dawson created personalized portraits of dogs, with little else in the background of the picture to distract from the focus. Her popularity even led to being commissioned by the Royal family to produce portraits of their favourite corgi.
Sometimes using the pseudonym 'Mac' in her drawings, she also published books including Dogs As I See Them (1936) and Dogs Rough and Smooth (1937), as well as illustrations for other books. Eventually Dawson would move to Hertfordshire at the beginning of the Second World War and remained there until her death in 1954.