Nikki – Owner
Nikki is a Child and Youth Care Counsellor by trade — and works with high-risk youth throughout the city of Edmonton. It’s important to Nikki to look beyond the statistics and assumptions people make about at-risk youth. She takes a flexible, responsive approach to meeting the needs of her youth clients because no two young people are having the exact same experience.
So she tailors her approach to their unique needs and empowers them with the coping skills they need to be resilient when confronting tough situations. Similarly, Nikki ensures that Dog Jogs tailors its services to the unique needs of her four-legged clients and their families.
“I thought I just wanted to run. Then I thought I just wanted to run with dogs, but deep down there was much more to it!”
Nikki’s dog, Koda, was suffering from pretty severe separation anxiety and developing a routine based on exercise was the most impactful tool she found. Running and walking Koda beyond the typical vet recommendations changed Koda’s life — and Nikki’s life as well. Coming and going, and being away from the house used to cause great stress for Koda and Nikki, but after they started running together, that stress went away.
After seeing what a difference this made to her life, Nikki knew that other people could benefit as well!
Nikki enjoys running races, from 5-KMs to half-marathons, but she loves running with her furry friends best of all. She’s also a ball hockey player, hiker, camper, and enjoys cooking (and eating) and travelling.
Steph – Owner
Steph didn’t grow up with pets (because her parents said no), but she has always been a friend to many dogs! She’s a dedicated athlete who plays soccer and ball hockey, and while she always ran hard while playing those sports, she didn’t consider herself to be a runner.
And then she started running with Nikki and Koda! Running became a de-stress tool for Steph and also inspired her to stop smoking. Plus she loves the sweet running apparel and shoes she gets to wear all the time now! She’s also very calm and is great with nervous dogs because her relaxed energy helps comfort and settle them.
Steph likes to travel — whether she’s backpacking around Europe or relaxing in Mexico, she’s always eager to sample the local food and then try to replicate the recipes back home.
Reina – Client Support & Dog Jogger
Reina is a martial arts student with a background in dance. She is currently an assistant instructor for a childrens’ martial arts class, where she helps students reach their goals and overcome obstacles. It’s an amazing sight to see their enthusiastic faces learn or try something new and succeed.
When Reina is not busy working, she can be found in some small nook crafting, or traveling and exploring Alberta and beyond. She loves hiking new trails throughout our rocky mountains and in new countries and regions while traveling. New Zealand is her next travel destination! Reina would love to just spend weeks on end running and hiking the entire country!
Reina has fond memories of visiting her grandparents’ farm. She rode horses, played with the barn cats and kittens, and best of all, played with their border collies. Reina and the dogs would run all throughout the pastures and property playing, what in her mind as a child, was a fantastic epic game of chase. Ever since then she has been looking forward to a time when she could surround herself with furry four-legged friends! That’s is why she became a dog jogger and now a foster parent for Barrhead Animal Rescue.
She loves to put on her Lululemon clothing and Adidas running shoes to go for a jog or hike through the river valley with her energetic husky-mix dog!
Ashley – Dog Jogger
Ashley has a degree in English from the University of Alberta and is currently working on getting her Residential Interiors Diploma to pursue a career in Design. Most of her career thus far has been in Retail Management. Her interests vary from visiting coffee shops, hiking, swimming and watching cheesy horror movies.
She resides with her partner and two rescue dogs. When they adopted their first dog, Winston, the plan was not to take him home that very first day, but the moment she picked him up into her arms….it was game over. Ashley has a strong work ethic, from her Management background. She doesn’t like to let people down and tries to lead by example.
When it comes to running gear, she’s not too particular, Her Nike shoes and an arm pocket for her phone, and she’s good to go! Her favourite animal movies are the original Lion King and Homeward Bound. If she could run anywhere in the world she’d choose anywhere near a beach or mountains.
Madisen – Dog Jogger
Madisen is a nursing student at Grant MacEwan University having recently moved back to Edmonton from Phoenix, Arizona. She is a part of a Greek Heritage Dance Group and loves everything to do with movement including running, biking, hiking. She finds being outdoors in nature to be very grounding. As a child she watched Homeward Bound on repeat.
Madisen thinks when you’re in a room full of people and a dog chooses to sit next to you. There is no greater feeling!
Her favourite running gear includes her Garmin watch (to track her movement), a waist pack for hands-free running, and a really good pair of moisture-wicking socks!
If she could run anywhere in the world you wouldn’t find her on any pavement near buildings, she’d much prefer a trail somewhere surrounded by nature.
Shannon – Dog Jogger
Shannon grew up in St. Albert and has traveled the world! After completing college and achieving what she calls “the expensive piece of paper in Alternative Energy Technology” and having some successful years on college hockey teams, she flew the nest to continue her pursuit of excellence as a goalie. Her travels took her to Australia and Germany then India, England, Ireland, and all across Canada. She now yearns for a simpler life, tending to plants, spending time with family, and going on adventures with her partner and furry companion, “the wily coyote”.
She has fond memories of her dear childhood dog, Scotia, running many kilometers side by side with no leash in sight and playing fetch in fields of wheat, watching her bounce up and down in the gold stalks like a kangaroo.
Shannon stays motivated by focusing on all the incredible reasons to go out or to get active. The synchronization of muscles, bones, blood, and breath all working together, the newness of the outdoors always changing, the possibility of surprise around each corner, under each tree, flowing down the creek, and of course, there’s nothing quite like the scent of fresh prairie air.
One of the best things about running is that all you need is a pair of shoes however for Shannon, shoes are everything! They need to be light-weight, flat, slightly cushioned, and have a bit of a tooth to the outside.
Her favourite animal movie is Bambi, and can probably quote the entire film. If she could run anywhere in the world, she’d be in Mons, a city in Belgium.
Danahe – Dog Jogger
Danehe is a Bachelor of Science student at MacEwan University pursuing a career in forensic psychology or correctional therapy, she’s following her passion to make a difference in the current correctional system.
She loves all the outdoor things: hiking, biking, swimming or simply going for a picnic. When the weather is nice, you’ll definitely find her outside!
She has a curious puppy, Meeka, at home and loves watching her learn all about the world around. Danahe is enjoying seeing her becoming more independent and brave.
Motivation comes Danahe’s way by setting goals, even if it’s a long term goal. Simply having the objective, cultivates the motivation to keep at it. For running, she likes to have everything lightweight. Her essentials are her phone to track distance/speed and her AirPods for music or a podcast. She’s hoping to add a hands-free leash to her gear soon.
Danahe’s favourite animal movie is Marmaduke, she used to watch it once a week and she thinks it helped spark her love for big dogs. If she could run in any city you’d find her in Greece along the coastline soaking up the views!
Willow- Dog Jogger
Willow has lived in Edmonton her whole life! She keeps herself busy with hobbies including: running, singing in a choir, and watching movies. Currently, she is pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics from the University of Alberta.
Willow has a house full of super spunky rescues! Currently, she and her family own a chihuahua & three rescue cats. Last year one of the kittens would sleep curled up on her chest every night- isn’t that the cutest thing ever?! One of her other favourite memories was coming home after school one day when she was 9 to be surprised by her first family pet.
Willow likes to stay motivated. She makes lists and mindmaps to help her stay ahead of the game. She also likes to have fun activities always planned and well into the future so that she has something to work towards.
Willow is not super particular about what she wears while running. It is imperative that she always has her armband to hold her phone to track her runs and to listen to good music!
Two of Willow’s favourite animal-related movies are both directed by Wes Anderson, Fantastic Mr. Fox & Isle of Dogs. If she could run anywhere in the world, she would choose Vancouver because of the diverse types of running paths & trails.
Ian has been living in Edmonton since 2018 with his new wife, new baby, and a bun in the oven. Where did he live before Edmonton? We’ll let you guess, but Guinness was created there…
Ian is pretty dang fit! He was involved in boxing for many years both as a competitor and a coach, completed a few ultra-marathons and ultra triathlons while he was a member of the Irish army. Ian opened a CrossFit gym for five years after dedicating his time to the military. He’s even agreed to do more than one dog jog a day when he can-lucky jogging doggos!
One of his favourite memories of an animal is when he had his personal space invaded by an XL Bully pup while driving. Ian remembers Bunchy climbing into the front of the car, sitting on his lap, and resting his big heavy head on his shoulder. It was cute, but not safe!
This brilliant human being stays motivated in life “By telling [himself] how lucky [he is] to be able to do the little things in life that most of us take for granted.” Seriously, what an outlook to have!
Some of Ian’s favourite running gear that he can wear most of the year comes from Lululemon. But he really likes Sungpak for the wintertime.
If Ian were to sit down and watch a pet-related movie, he’d choose the fun tale of Turner & Hooch. Do you remember it? Tom Hanks and the adorable french mastiff named Beasley were the stars in this hit!
If Ian could run anywhere in the world, he would pick the Swiss Alps, as it is his favourite place to run. He says there are so many happy cows that greet you on the way up and thinks it’s just “really cool.” Add it to your run bucket list!
Ian can’t wait to be friends with your dog and work for your cat!
Connor is a Realtor living in Sherwood Park with his wife, Rebecca, and their dog, Tucker. He will never forget going to pick up Tucker for the first time to bring him home. He was the cutest! He’s grown up with dogs his entire life and simply couldn’t picture his life without them! Growing up he liked to watch the movies Homeward Bound and Far From Home with his sister.
Connor is a self-proclaimed “sports nut”. His hobbies include snowboarding, hockey, football, running and pretty much all sports. He spends his time staying active, camping and hanging out with friends and family.
Connor is a big believer that there is always room to grow. He is constantly trying to better himself both personally and professionally. If he could run in any city in the world you would find him somewhere in Bali, Indonesia.
Hannah- Dog Jogger
Hannah is a busy lady with diplomas in both Animal Science and Agricultural Business. She is a part-time student working on her Bachelor of Commerce in Finance while also working part-time for a dairy operation and Dog Jogs!
A fond memory of time spent with animals for Hannah is when she worked at Fort Edmonton Park, and she taught the pigs to play fetch, plus sharing her lunch with them. Is it a surprise her favourite animal movie is Babe? She reports she could watch it thousands of times!
Hannah uses lots of positive self-talk and listens to her body and mind! She always feels more motivated when she’s feeling her best mentally and physically.
A favourite tool she uses is her running belt! It’s perfect for holding her phone and snacks for pups and herself.
Hannah’s 5-year-old English bulldog Toby has her wrapped around her little dewclaw, and she’s sure it’ll be the same with your dogs too!
Amy- Dog Jogger
Amy developed a love of the outdoors early on in life growing up in beautiful British Columbia. She has a large immediate family, including three girls and three dogs. She plans to further her education and pursue a career as a veterinarian technician assistant. Amy enjoys many hobbies: reading, writing, walking, dog parks, hiking, travelling, snowboarding, biking, yoga, and tarot card readings. She loves making crafts, her specialties include infinity scarves and dream catchers. When not walking dogs she frequents local food and craft markets.
For Amy, dogs are amazing because of their unconditional love. She recalls when “Shadow”, a golden labrador purebred from her childhood, crawled right into her lap when they went to pick out a dog. Shadow helped her feel accepted and loved when others were incapable of doing so. She still has a million photos of the two of them on her grandmother’s old sectional couch.
Her top running gear is Lululemon tights and New Balance runners. Her favourite animal movie is Aristocats and If Amy could run anywhere in the world she would choose somewhere along the west coast.
Jeremie- Dog Jogger
Jeremie was born & raised an Edmontonian, although he has spent some time living elsewhere in Canada. He has always been a dog person and only spent 7 years without a dog, which was long enough- too long in fact!
Jeremie was a mechanical engineer for nearly 10 years before switching to machining. Other than working in metal, he loves camping and hiking in the woods and mountains, bringing old motorcycles back to life, and true crime shows while hanging with his fiancée and their fur fam.
Jeremie remembers many afternoons spent being pulled by his Grandma’s first dog, Sarah,on his skateboard!
When asked how he stays motivated, Jeremie reports that a combination of procrastination & self-judgment usually result in him springing into action!
Want to know what animal-related movie you could catch Jeremie watching? Turner & Hooch or Ace Ventura!
Random fact about Jer, he’s known to make a mean pizza dough from scratch!
Andréa -Dog Jogger
Andréa is a university student majoring in Psychology and minoring in Gender Studies. Her focus has been working with LGBTQ2+ youth, and she hopes to become a youth counsellor one day! (How awesome is that?!) As you can tell, Andréa is passionate about her studies, anything health and fitness, and social justice!
Her little Frenchton, Matilda (aka Crazy Matilda), keeps Andréa busy! (Matilda is adorable)
Andréa loves staying active, which makes sense considering her favourite place to shop is MEC. As an avid runner, her must-haves are her Nike Shields, which she runs in, all winter! Andréa also loves having a puffy vest handy as it keeps her warm if she needs it but packs down well to carry.
Once Andréa declared Ru Paul’s Drag Race as her favourite sports team, we knew she was meant to be a part of the Dog Jogs family. And the fact that this woman is so conscious about being inclusive to all demographics and socially aware. If you’re looking for a way to give back to the community, check out IAAW and YESS, these are two of Andréa’s favourite groups to support.
Chris- Dog Jogger
Chris was born and grew up in Montreal to parents who actually immigrated to Canada from Europe. He is an achiever! And has a few degrees in Geology and Computer Science. Another fun tidbit about Chris is that he also speaks French and German!
Most of his free time is either spent jogging, alpine skiing, doing yoga, reading, and keeping up to date with the latest IT trends. In Chris’ earlier years, he was a competitive soccer player and skier. He has a fifteen-year-old who is becoming more and more mysterious every day.
Chris’ favorite memory of an animal is picking up his first dog from the SPCA. He remembers how he pestered his parents for years to get a dog and how they finally agreed when he was 11. They went to the SPCA and Chris still remembers looking at all the dogs in their kennels and feeling sorry for them wanting to take them all home. When he saw that German Shepard sitting in his kennel, he was so happy, words couldn’t even describe it. Needless to say, they took him home that very same day. Chris doesn’t have any dogs currently but does have three amazing cats that act as his personal bodyguards.
Patrick- Dog Jogger
Patrick has graduated from both the Baking program at NAIT and the NAIT School of Business, where he earned my diploma in Entrepreneurship and Innovation. He has also completed the electronic music production program at Night Vision Music Academy. Patrick has had many different jobs throughout his life and is always striving to use his creativity and personality to make a living while trying new things.
Patrick has worked as a baker, wedding and events assistant, DJ, concert promoter, contractual audio producer, knife salesman, and dishwasher… just to name a few. Most recently, he started his own small online bread business, which he currently runs with his wife. As for hobbies, Patrick has a deep passion for music production and experiencing the outdoors with his wife and their pug, Tater. He also enjoys a good TV series or video game from time to time and the occasional model painting binge.
Patrick’s favourite memory with a pet was the day that he met his pug, Tater. He and his wife visited the breeder’s house, and when she opened the kennel doors, a whole pack of pugs came tumbling into the room. Patrick remembers Tater being instantly discernible from the rest of the pugs as she was by far the cutest looking and by far the loudest breather. Since that day, she has been Patrick’s best furry friend.
Zoè- Dog Jogger
Bio coming soon!