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 – Client Support & Dog Jogger (she/her)

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!

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

Ashley – Dog Jogger (she/her)

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.

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

Cecile – Dog Jogger (she/her/they/them)

As an ex-varsity hockey and soccer player, Cancun native and Banff transplant, and also a yoga enthusiast, movement is very much a central part of Cecile’s life. Since stepping away from competitive sports Cecile has enjoyed slowing down and rediscovering her joy of movement through gentler practices such as yoga, meditation, and natural movement training. Some of Cecile’s passions include permaculture, urban sketching, and anything DIY. On her off days, you can find Cecile diving into a new book, fixing something, or spending time outside playing in the dirt. Cecile has an abundant amount of curiosity for the world and a deep love for animals. She cannot wait to further explore the world with your dogs one trail run at a time! 

Cecile’s fondest animal memory is the time she met her first dog. She was completely overjoyed by the sight of her little chocolate lab mix pup who had the brightest blue eyes. To this day Cecile develops a deep connection with all animals she meets, she never forgets them! To keep motivated Cecile likes to spring out of bed first thing in the morning to give her the momentum she needs to start her day off right! 

When running, Cecile likes to have a high-quality pair of merino wool socks. If she could run anywhere in the world Cecile would choose Oslo, Norway because of the vast green spaces. Those views would knock her wool socks right off! How to Train Your Dragon is Cecile’s favourite animal movie, and if Cecile was going out for dinner you’d find her at Huma or Tres Carnales. 

Ever wonder how Cecile starts her day before she heads out with the pups- check it out

Dani – Dog Jogger (they/them)

Dani is currently enrolled at the University of Alberta taking a Bachelor of Science in Animal Health and is majoring in Companion and Performance Animals. Dani loves their program and hopes to travel far and wide for work once they graduate. Dani has many groovy hobbies like crocheting, hiking, and DIYing clothes and furniture. When they are not exploring the river valley for the best reading spots Dani might be listening to true crime podcasts or hanging out with their hairless guinea pig named Morrissey. Morrissey happens to double as a lovable companion and alarm clock, he always lets Dani know when it’s time to wake up and feed him breakfast! 

Dani’s family cat Midnight has always been very intuitive when it came to Dani’s emotions and would follow them around the house and curl up on their lap if they came home upset. One of Dani’s favourite memories of Midnight is the way she would hide on top of the refrigerator and stealthily jump from the fridge to Dani’s lap on the nearby couch. Although Midnight gave Dani a handful of frights, they always appreciated the cuddles! 

Making lists in their notebook helps keep Dani motivated throughout the day, they like to keep track of what they need and want to get done. Dani is not super picky about running gear, right now they enjoy hitting the trails with their Nike runners and bike shorts, which are perfect for stashing lots of dog treats! Homeward Bound is an animal movie that has a very special place in Dani’s heart from when they were a kid, and if Dani were to run anywhere in the world they would have to choose anywhere near a body of water – New Zealand and Lisbon Portugal are on their running bucket list! An iced caramel latte with oat milk from Cafe Sole and sunflowers are two things that put a big smile on Dani’s face.

Dani takes you on a day in the life of a dog jogger here

Sarah – Dog Jogger (she/her)

Born and raised in Edmonton, Sarah is currently in the Master of Counselling program through City University studying to be a therapist. Sarah loves to explore the vibrant restaurant scene in Edmonton and is a huge foodie. When she’s not trying new delicious foods Sarah loves to play sports like basketball and soccer, which she’s been involved in since she was a kid. With Sarah’s adventurous spirit and love of learning it’s no surprise she is an avid traveller and a fairly extroverted gal. Sarah loves dogs and one of her favourite outings is a trip to the dog park. 

Sarah’s fondest animal memories are the times she spent with her Aunt’s Maltese named Casper. Although Sarah didn’t have her own dog growing up, she took care of Casper often when her Aunt was off travelling, Sarah and Casper were an inseparable pair. Casper lived a life full of happiness and love and passed away almost a decade ago, however, Sarah remembers their bond as if it were yesterday and believes that her love of dogs was born through her times with sweet Casper. 

Sarah gets her motivation from many sources in her life. She finds daily motivation through her innate passion to help others, spread kindness, and make the world a better place for future generations. Sarah practices radical self-care and is fairly disciplined when it comes to her routines and prioritizes doing things that help her feel energized and inspired. Some of these activities include exercise, meditation, journaling, and spiritual practices. Sarah is surrounded by a very supportive circle of family friends like her nephews who are a major source of motivation for her! 

Sarah likes to run with her trusty pair of New Balance runners which she ran in for a marathon! They are the perfect fit. Sarah likes to track her runs with her Apple Watch and hopes to one day complete a Disney marathon, or the original marathon in Greece! Sarah’s favourite animal movie is Hachi: A Dog’s Tale and when she feels like a Chai, Sarah heads over to Remedy Cafe.

Follow Sarah on a day of being a Dog Jogger here

Kim – Dog Jogger (she/her/they/them)

Kim is an incredibly creative person and has a passion for learning and trying new things. She finds joy in all kinds of media like writing, dance, photography, and painting just to name a few. Kim has a life filled with joy and has four amazing children and four fabulous furbabies. She loves to spend time being active and outside, she fills her time with bike rides, bird watching, and completing obstacle races which Kim thinks are a blast! Kim believes her best education comes from the learnings and teachings offered by the diverse range of lives with whom she’s spent time. 

When asked about her favourite animal memory, Kim recalls the time she was licked by a goat on her cousin’s farm! Kim’s ability to motivate herself is driven by her desire to bring moments of joy and hope into other’s lives. When she is headed out for a run Kim always takes her Vibram barefoot running shoes. If Kim could run anywhere, she would run the Istanbul Marathon which is the only marathon in the world whose course spans two continents. Kim’s oldest child’s first steps were on the Bosphorus Bridge, which is the first place where the Istanbul marathon crosses from Asia to Europe. It would be really special to Kim to have that connection! 

Kim is a big fan of garage sales and loves giving all her serendipitous finds a new home. If Kim is feeling like a chocolate bar she’ll go in for a Crispy Crunch, and her favourite animal-related movies are Planet Earth and Happy Feet! 

Kim loves all the animals- she shares some video of her own furbabies

Jada – Dog Jogger (she/her)

Jada was born and raised in Grande Prairie and grew up playing every sport she could. She’s currently studying sociology at the King’s University where she also plays volleyball, and Jada aspires to get her Ph.D. in the future.

Jada’s favourite memory of her childhood dog is the time they went on their first walk together. They trekked through lots of beautiful terrain like the grassy hills by Jada’s home, and when they returned they were both so tired and covered in mud! 

Staying motivated is very important to Jada and she does so by reminding herself what her biggest goals are every morning. When it comes to heading out for a run, Jada loves to suit up in her Nike runners and Lululemon leggings, which have stylish (and functional) pockets! 

If Jada was heading to Dairy Queen she would get a cookie dough blizzard, she believes there is no superior flavour! Jada would love to run through Grand Central Park in New York one day and her favourite animal-related movie is See Spot Run. 

 

Jackie – Dog Jogger (she/her)

 Jackie was born and raised in Edmonton while her whole family is from Ecuador. She’s completed a diploma in the Police and Investigations program at MacEwan University and is now on her way to crushing a criminology degree! Jackie dreams of being a police officer with the Edmonton Police Service, specifically in the K-9 unit. In her spare time, Jackie adores camping, going biking in the mud, and knitting. 

One of Jackie’s favourite animal memories was the time she was bit by a donkey at the corn maze. The donkey wasn’t happy with Jackie when she ran out of treats and the bite left a bruise on her wrist for a month. That donkey…what an ass! 

When she’s out jogging Jackie always brings her headphones and her favourite running shoes. Jackie uses lots of music to keep herself motivated! If she could run and rock out to her tunes anywhere in the world she would choose Stanley Park in Vancouver so she could run along the water. 

Jackie’s favourite animal flick is Beverly Hills Chihuahua and if she was out and about Jackie would stop for bubble tea at Boba Island in Chinatown. 

Find out more about Jackie here

Brittney – Dog Jogger (she/her) *photo coming soon*

Brittney has spent most of her life alternating between living in Alberta and Saskatchewan. While she was in Saskatchewan Brittney attended the University of Regina and graduated with a Bachelor’s of Kinesiology. Since graduating Brittney has been working in Edmonton and her hobbies include reading, playing soccer, longboarding, and spending time with all the animals she can!

One of Brittney’s favourite animal memories was the time she was taking a video of her sister’s Golden Retriever puppy. He was running around not paying attention and with a teddy bear in his mouth… he ran straight into a tree! Luckily no trees or puppies were harmed in the making of the now hilarious video. 

It’s no doubt that Brittney lives a busy life, so keeping to-do lists helps her stay on track. She finds a lot of joy in crossing off items on a to-do list, and seeing something that needs to be crossed off motivates Brittney to complete the task. When Brittney is heading out for a jog she gears up in her Asics runners, Adidas shorts, and a Nike shirt! If she could run anywhere in the world Brittney would have to choose Hana, Hawaii because of the stunning views. 

Whether she’s heading out for a warm drink, lunch, or ice cream, Brittney likes to shop local! Her favourite local spots are Remedy Cafe for a chai, Made by Marcus for a sweet treat, and Farrow for delicious sandwiches and cronuts. 

 

Sam – Dog Jogger (she/her) *photo coming soon*

Sam moved to Edmonton 3 years ago to experience the Personal Fitness Training program at NAIT in person and has since been certified as a Corrective Exercise Specialist. Sam is passionate about helping people move better and improve their quality of life. You would likely catch Sam out on the trails running with her dog on a daily basis, she truly just loves being outside! Other regular hobbies include biking, hiking, camping, and singing. Sam’s dog is only 6 months old but they have already gone on so many adventures together!

Sam has so many good memories with animals. One of her favourites, and the reason Sam got her own dog, was the time she spent taking care of her brother’s roommate’s dog while she was in Saskatoon for a month. She trained the little guy how to walk and once they were comfortable the two of them started going for runs together, it made both of them so happy! 

Having coffee and getting outside for a walk or a run is how Sam keeps herself motivated. Her day is off without these things! Sam loves to track all of her workouts and steps on her trusty apple watch, and is a self proclaimed sucker for Lululemon. It is actually one of Sam’s goals to run a marathon along the Great Wall of China! This gal’s favourite restaurant is The Moth Cafe, and when she feels like a good cry she watches the movie Hatchi, it makes her teary every time! 

 

Alyssa – Dog Jogger (she/her) *photo coming soon*

Alyssa is currently studying at NAIT in the Emergency Medical Responder program and will be furthering her education to complete Paramedic schooling. Alyssa grew up in the Edmonton area and has had 9 dogs throughout the years, but she loves animals of all kinds! Hockey is something that Alyssa loves to both play and watch, she’s played for a total of twelve years! 

For the majority of her childhood Alyssa had an Alaskan Malamute and a Cairn Terrier who adored one another and got along so well. One of Alyssa’s favourite memories with these pups are all the times they would walk her down the driveway when she was hopping on the bus to go to school. When Alyssa got home both pups would be waiting at the end of the driveway! 

Alyssa loves to workout, and seeing her progress over time is something that really motivates her to stick to her fitness goals. In a school setting Alyssa stays motivated by surrounding herself with people who have similar interests to her and are driven to succeed. Gymshark and Lululemon are Alyssa’s go-to places for running attire. As for her shoes, Alyssa prefers Nike and Adidas. If Alyssa could run anywhere in the world she would choose Vancouver, and her favourite animal movie is Marley and Me. Although Alyssa is not a big coffee fan, she still likes going to Starbucks for a black tea peach refresher! 

 

Colby – Dog Jogger (he/him) *photo coming soon*

Colby graduated from Lethbridge College with a Communication Arts- Broadcast Journalism diploma in 2015. He loves sports, podcasts, video games, and exercise! Colby has two dogs and one cat at home, they are all rescues! His favourite animal memory is the day he adopted his dog Koda. Koda ran straight from the backyard and snuggled up in Colby’s wife’s lap, and that’s when they knew Koda was going to be the greatest dog ever! 

Getting things done and doing things well is extremely motivating to Colby, so when there is a job to be done he always completes it to the best of his abilities. When Colby is heading out for a run he sports his Beats Solo3 headphones, basketball shorts, and a nice loose shirt. He’s currently rocking a pair of black and red Under Armour running shoes! One place Colby would love to run in and show off his signature running outfit would be San Francisco, and his favourite animal movie is The Lion King! Colby isn’t a fan of tea, coffee, or chocolate(?!), and his favourite snack is dill pickle chips.