Meet the Dog Jogs Team

Nikki – Owner (she/her)

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 (she/her)

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- Office Manager & Certified Dog Trainer Dip.CBST (she/her)

Reina is a passionate animal lover, with a particular fondness for cats. As a self-proclaimed crazy cat lady, she adores her two feline companions and cherishes the unique personalities they bring into her life. But her love for animals extends beyond just cats. Reina also has a pitty X Great Dane mix who constantly surprises her with his intelligence and a spirited Chestnut Mare that keeps her on her toes.

When she’s not immersed in the world of animals, Reina enjoys indulging in her hobbies. Crafting, especially crochet, allows her to express her creativity, while reading takes her on captivating adventures through the pages of a book. She also takes on the challenge of nurturing house plants, although she humorously admits that her success rate is around 60%.

Reina has a solid educational background to support her passion for animals. She holds a diploma in Hospitality Management from NAIT, which gives her a unique perspective on managing the office affairs of Dog Jogs, where she serves as the Office Manager. Additionally, her Diploma of Canine Behavior Science and Technology from CASI equips her with the knowledge and expertise to train dogs effectively.

One of Reina’s most cherished memories is witnessing those “click” moments when a concept or behavior falls into place for an animal she’s working with. These moments of understanding and connection reaffirm her dedication to her work. However, if she had to choose a specific favorite memory, it would be the time she took her dog, Ryder, to a lake for the first time. Witnessing Ryder’s uncontainable excitement and joy as he splashed in the water created a lasting memory of pure happiness.

To stay motivated, Reina relies on copious amounts of coffee and meticulously organized to-do lists. These tools help her stay focused and accomplish her tasks efficiently, ensuring that she keeps Dog Jogs running smoothly.

If Reina could choose any city in the world to go for a run, she would love to explore the trails of the United Kingdom, Ireland, and New Zealand. These scenic landscapes offer a perfect backdrop for her passion for running, allowing her to combine her love for travel and physical activity.

If you want to brighten Reina’s day, a simple gesture like surprising her with her favorite chocolate bar, Caramilk, would bring a smile to her face. It’s the little things that show her you care and appreciate her dedication to her work and her love for animals.

Reina has done many Dog Jogs Instagram takeover- check them out

Ashley – Head Dog Jogger (she/her)

Ashley has an Arts Degree from the UofA as well as her Residential Interiors Diploma. She is currently working as an Interior Decorator and is absolutely loving it! Ashley spends as much time as she can outside, especially with her two dogs. Some of her other interests include traveling, hiking, hitting different coffee shops, and watching cheesy horror movies. 

Picking up her first dog Winston is one of Ashley’s fondest animal memories. Winston was being fostered with his mom and littermates, and when Ashley are her partner drove out 90 minutes to meet them, they were not planning on taking one home right away! Of course, as soon as Ashley picked up Winston there was no way they were leaving without him. They had to pick up every single thing you need for a new puppy because they were definitely not prepared! 

Ashley stays motivated by leading by example.  She hates to disappoint people so Ashley is driven to always put her best foot forward. Having multiple pockets is something that is essential to any garment in Ashley’s running wardrobe, she needs lots of easy access spaces to store her phone, poop bags, and treats! Her favourite animal movies are the Lion King and Homeward bound, and her favourite coffee spot is Roasti. Ashley and her party of pockets would be happy running anywhere in the world that is near the beach or the mountains.

Ashley’s worked for Dog Jogs for a long time- check out all her stories here

Willow – Head Dog Jogger & Virtual Assistant (she/her)

Willow grew up in Edmonton and is currently studying Paleontology at the University of Alberta. She loves the outdoors and running on the trails. When she’s not in school or jogging with your pups you would find Willow crocheting, hanging out with her pals, and watching nature documentaries, preferably narrated by David Attenborough. 

One of her favourite animal memories is of her childhood chihuahua, Sparky. Despite his small stature, he had the most epic zoomies and Willow remembers fondly all the times they ran around together. He was the cutest little ball of energy. Willow is not too picky when it comes to her running gear. When she is out with your pups she likes to have her hands-free leash and her little running backpack filled with lots of treats, poop bags, and water. If she could run anywhere in the world she would go to Anchorage, Alaska. Chilly-weather running is (in Willow’s humble opinion), the best!

Willow’s favourite animal-related movie is Fantastic Mr. Fox and her favourite yeg restaurant is Otto!

Willow makes a lot of reels for Dog Jogs- here’s one of our favs!

Josephine – Dog Jogger (she/her)

Josephine is originally from Montreal, where she was trained in classical ballet. She has the equivalent to a Bachelor’s degree in the Cecchetti method of ballet! Josephine has danced professionally, teaching and choreographing for over 20 years! Some of her hobbies include camping, yoga, and long walks with her four-legged friends. 

It’s hard to choose a favourite animal-related memory for Josephine, there are just too many to pick from! One of her more recent memories is when her pup Moonie met horses for the first time. The horses loved Moonie and the feeling was mutual, they all became best buds.

Josephine is motivated by yoga, animals, and life in general. If she could run anywhere in the world she would run by a nice beach, and Josephine’s favourite animal movie is Turner and Hooch. It doesn’t make her cry, which is a rare happening for her when watching an animal movie!  

Rebecca – Head Dog Jogger (she/her)

Rebecca grew up with and has taken care of dogs her whole life. She enjoys exploring, being outside, and animals! Rebecca loves to draw and is a digital artist and freelancer, but before that she trained in aerial dance and parkour! She’s always been an avid jogger; running is Rebecca’s favourite way to clear her head and keep her endurance up.

When Rebecca gets ready for bed she always asks her dog if she wants to cuddle, and of course, she immediately will come up and rest next to her. As a dog mom that is her favourite time of day and those evenings are collectively her favourite animal memory! 

Rebecca is motivated by living a meaningful life, which drives her to do certain types of work. She believes in learning about the skills and passions she already possesses and using them to contribute to her community. When she’s out for a run Rebecca always has her running backpack, which is much lighter and less clunky than a regular bag. If she could run anywhere in the world, Rebecca would go to Iceland or New Zealand for the beautiful nature. Her go-to animal movie is Balto, and Rebecca’s favourite restaurant is OEB Breakfast Co.

Rebecca is a reel star- check this out

 

Diana – Head Dog Jogger (they/she/he)

Diana comes from a trade background. They have been in the Alberta Carpenters Union since they were 18 as a scaffolder but moved to Kamloops BC to pursue a Police and Security Diploma. Diana switched from that to psychology to sociology to political science, but they couldn’t make up their mind so they ended up back full-time in the trades. Diana’s hobbies include rollerskating, slacklining, surfing, and chilling in their hammock with their guitar. 

Diana’s favourite animal memories are of their old dog Koby. He was the type of dog that just knew when something was wrong. When Diana was younger they used to get terrible migraines, and Koby always knew. 

Motivation is no problem for Diana as long as they have their music! It truly sets the vibe for their day. Diana loves Under Armour for their running gear and if they could run anywhere in the world they would go to the red sand beaches of Greece, or the black sand beaches of Iceland. 

Three of Diana’s favourite animal movies are Zootopia, The Secret Life of Pets, and Fantastic Mr.Fox. Diana usually makes their coffee from home but if they feel like going to a coffee shop, they will hit up Remedy or Second Cup.

Our team is in agreeance that Diana has the most soothing voice!

Gloria – Dog Jogger (she/her)

Gloria is an energetic animal lover who is happiest when she is moving her body! Before becoming a Dog Jogger she worked in many different fields like child and youth care, medical office administration, and hospitality. When the pandemic hit she did a lot of reflection and realized she is most passionate about being active and with animals. When she is not getting her sweat on, Gloria enjoys reading, cooking, napping in between her two dogs, and PC gaming! 

Gloria’s favourite animal memory is the time she first held her dog Khalessi. She was the size of a potato and kept burrowing against Gloria’s neck for comfort. Now she is a sassy senior who still tries to burrow despite her grown-up size! Gloria’s motivation comes from stepping back and seeing the big picture while still embracing the little victories. When it’s time for a run Gloria grabs her New Balance shoes. 

If she could run anywhere in the world Gloria would go to Norway, Denmark, or Sweden because she is a cold-weather gal! Her go-to beverage is plain tea, although in the summertime Gloria loves a good iced latte from Second Cup.

Gloria hadn’t posted before on stories before this!

Jaquelyn- Head Dog Jogger (she/her)

Jaquelyn grew up in the Okanagan valley and enjoyed everything it had to offer, from the sports and outdoor activities to its well-known beer and wine scene. She absolutely adores all animals, and her favourite animal is an owl. When she moved to Alberta she sadly had to leave her family pets behind, so she is super excited to meet all the fur babies of Edmonton! 

It’s hard for Jaquelyn to choose just one favourite animal memory, but she is very fond of when she taught her dog Moka “bang”, which includes a finger gun and him rolling to his back. It still brings joy to everyone who witnesses the spectacle. 

Jaquelyn is an active girl who loves a good set of headphones. She has different sets depending on how much protection her ears need from the elements! Jaquelyn also enjoys having a fanny pack while she runs for her phone and snacks! If she could run anywhere in the world she would go to Australia, and her favourite animal movies are the Harry Potter movies. She considers them animal movies because of all of the owls!

Jaq is a star at working with reactive pups

 

Kleio – Dog Jogger (she/her)

Kleio lives in Edmonton, but she is originally from BC! She loves to paddleboard, go for nature walks, and binge-watch TV series. Kleio is an avid gardener, but she’s pretty sure the plants she has killed would disagree. She has a Human Geography and Planning Degree

When Kleio was little, her dog would come with her class on field trips. The class adored him, he would make sure everyone was okay by running up and down the group, checking in on everyone. Once he finished his rounds he would come back to hang out with Kleio. This is one of Kleio’s favourite animal memories.

Staying motivated is no problem for Kleio, as long as she has a cup of joe! Kleio isn’t picky about running gear, but it is imperative that she has a solid pair of running shoes. She thinks if your feet hurt then the rest of you will too! Art of Racing in the Rain is Kleio’s favourite animal movie, however, she thinks the book is far superior to the film. If she could run anywhere in the world, you would find Kleio running along the river in London. When Kleio is feeling like a tea she heads over to Block 1912, and her favourite blizzard from DQ is cookie dough!

Haven – Dog Jogger (she/her) -Picture coming soon

Haven, a valued member of the Dog Jogs team, brings a lifetime of love for animals to her role as a Dog Jogger. Growing up surrounded by dogs, cats, birds, hamsters, and fish, her affinity for all creatures great and small knew no bounds. Even as a child, Haven fearlessly sought out encounters with reptiles and other “scary” animals, harboring a deep curiosity for the diverse animal kingdom. While her childhood dream of a house filled with a menagerie of animals was tempered by practicality, Haven now lavishes her affection on her two cherished cats.

Beyond her passion for animals, Haven finds solace and adventure in her active lifestyle. As a dedicated runner, she understands the importance of quality gear, particularly investing in supportive running shoes that allow her to go the distance. She also appreciates the convenience of athletic leggings and shorts, equipped with pockets on the outer thigh for seamless storage during her runs.

If given the opportunity to run in any city worldwide, Haven’s heart belongs to Reykjavík. Imagining breathtaking views and the chance to witness the enchanting northern lights, she envisions a truly mesmerizing experience.

When it comes to indulging her taste buds, Haven has a soft spot for all dressed chips, savoring their savory and tangy flavors. Additionally, she enjoys her coffee black, with Rogue Wave being her go-to spot for a satisfying cup. On special occasions, she treats herself to a plant-based affogato at Coffee Bureau, relishing the delightful combination of espresso and dairy-free goodness. As a vegan, Haven’s taste for blizzards at DQ has shifted, but she fondly remembers her pre-vegan days when the skor blizzard was her ultimate guilty pleasure.

Beyond her work at Dog Jogs, Haven revels in her thriving indoor jungle of around 40 diverse plant species. Transforming an entire room of her apartment into a botanical oasis, she dedicates her free time to nurturing and tending to her leafy companions. And when she’s not caring for her beloved cats or tending to her green space, Haven engages in a range of hobbies, from crocheting to embracing the outdoors through hiking, backpacking, camping, and skiing during the winter months.

Haven’s unwavering passion for animals, active lifestyle, and nurturing nature make her a vital contributor to the Dog Jogs team. Clients can trust in her care, knowing that their furry companions are in the hands of a dedicated and compassionate professional.

Anika-Dog Jogger (she/her)

Meet Anika, a proud second-generation Canadian with a touch of German heritage. Fluent in German, thanks to her frequent visits to her extended family in Germany, Anika adds a unique cultural blend to our team. Currently pursuing a Bachelor of Communication Studies at MacEwan University, she’s sharpening her communication skills while also expressing her creative side through her love of baking and painting.

Anika’s bond with animals was solidified at an early age when she received a cute, little grey kitten, Tinkerbell, as a surprise gift. Her love for Tinkerbell turned her into a mini-expert on kittens, making frequent trips to the library to learn how to care for her new furry best friend. This heart-warming memory, among others, has added a deep, compassionate dimension towards her dedication for pets’ well-being.

Motivation for Anika comes from maintaining a disciplined routine. She is someone who appreciates structure and organization, a trait reflected in her daily work. Her favourite running gear comprises a comfortable pair of Nike running shoes and a hands-free leash, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable jogging experience for both her and our canine clients.

Anika’s love for animals transcends her profession—just ask her about her favourite movie, “Bambi”. She’s also an adventurous spirit, with a dream to run alongside the seasoned marathoners in her family in Germany.

Her palate favours fruity flavours; if she’s not sipping an orange, strawberry, or lemonade Slurpee, you’ll find her at home, wrapped in a cozy blanket by the fireplace, indulging in a hot cup of tea. Anika shops at Old Navy and champions animal rescues, supporting charities like Edson Animal Rescue Society (yes, she’s from Edson!).

Anika is all about balance, warmth, and dedication. She’s here to provide your pets with the care and attention they deserve while keeping in stride with her love for fitness and outdoor active living. Passionate, disciplined, and empathetic—Anika exemplifies what Dog Jogs stands for, making her an invaluable member of our team.

Noah -Dog Jogger (he/him)- photo coming soon

Meet Noah, our latest addition to the Dog Jogs team! Born and raised just a stone’s throw away from Edmonton in the quaint town of Bon Accord, Noah has always been an animal enthusiast, sharing his childhood with a family of dogs and plenty of friendly neighborhood cats. He’s recently become a proud cat parent himself to his whimsical black cat, Loki, but don’t worry dog lovers, a canine companion is definitely in his future plans!

When he’s not busy developing deep bonds with your dogs on their jogs, he’s quite the sports aficionado; from shooting hoops with a passion for basketball to scaling indoor climbing walls, Noah is always up to something active. Don’t be surprised when the cold weather rolls in, if Noah swaps his jogging shoes for a snowboard on occasions – he absolutely loves wintering in the mountains!

If you’re wondering about his favourite animal-themed memory, just picture young Noah, playfully being chased by his dogs atop the hay bales on his grandparents’ farm. The pure joy and excitement of those moments are still with him today – and it’s why he loves what he does at Dog Jogs.

Not one to back down from a challenge, Noah is constantly setting the bar higher for himself, fueled by his competitive spirit. He’s also a fan of cinema, with the ‘Jungle Book’ topping his favourite animal-themed movie list.

For snack time, you’ll find Noah indulging his sweet tooth with a Hershey’s Cookies ‘n’ Creme bar or savouring the salty tang of all-dressed chips. He’s also a loyal supporter of the Toronto Raptors, embodying the team spirit both on and off the field.

In line with our caring ethos here at Dog Jogs, Noah holds a deep respect for mental health, regularly supporting the Canadian Mental Health Association. Oh, and did we mention his favourite random holiday? It’s National Pizza Day! Now that’s a guy who knows how to celebrate life’s simple pleasures!

Noah is all set to make your pup’s Day Jogs a fun-filled adventure. Excited? So are we! Let’s welcome Noah’s journey at Dog Jogs as he works towards giving your beloved dogs the all-inclusive care they need. Joyful runs and safety are always his priority, just as they are ours.

Mackenzie -Dog Jogger (she/her)

Meet Mackenzie! When she’s not busy chasing trails or conquering mountains, she’s probably plotting her next fishing escapade or perfecting her welding skills. Mackenzie is all about that outdoor life, and her love for nature knows no bounds.

What keeps Mackenzie going? Well, aside from her welder dreams, she’s all about that fitness life. Staying in shape is her motivation, and her go-to gear for those long dog jogs day? A tactical water pouch vest that’s as essential as a loyal dog jogging buddy.

When she’s not exploring the great outdoors, Mackenzie loves a good animal flick, with Madagascar taking top honors. And when it comes to treats, a blue raspberry slurpee or a Snickers Blizzard from DQ are her guilty pleasures. Oh, and don’t forget mint Oreo – a close contender!

Where does Mackenzie dream of traveling? The Grand Canyon has a spot on her wanderlust list, promising epic views and new challenges to tackle.