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Meet The Bark Zone Alphas


A Passionate Pack of Animal Lovers

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Meet The Bark Zone Alphas


A Passionate Pack of Animal Lovers

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Jenny Wisenberg, Queen Alpha

Jenny has been an animal lover since childhood – horses, dogs, and generally anything with four legs – she just can’t live without at least one of her own. She studied Psychology at University and then Corporate Communications. Back then, she was sure she would have a successful corporate career which she did for just over five years.
 
Her Public Relations career ended with an unfortunate accident that took the life of her beloved young dog which prompted a life change. Through this terrible experience, she recognized how important this dog and others were to her so in 1999 she made her lifelong commitment to being responsible for the care of other peoples’ dogs. The Bark Zone was born and became a passion for Jenny starting with her first charge Molly, a golden retriever who she will never forget.
 
Her own dog at the time, Riley, an American Cocker Spaniel, challenged her knowledge and dog handling skills and became part of the reason she began to expand her knowledge on dog behaviour. Riley certainly put her through her paces and will always be remembered as the force that kept her going in the early years of The Bark Zone. Jenny steadily built her business, knowledge and experience which further spurred her interest to learn more about dog behaviour to help families build better bonds with their pet dogs every day.
 
From training puppies and their human families who are starting off their lives together, to adult dogs with behavioural issues, Jenny continues to advance her knowledge in behaviour modification so she can help the most serious cases. She draws from many disciplines to round her strategies and tactics that she strongly believes differ from family to family and dog to dog. Her belief of educating families about dog behaviour and the social structure of the Pack forms the foundation of her teachings which allow her clients to better understand and communicate with their animals.
 
Jenny’s knowledge is shared with her dog handlers who apply the information to their daily walks to better manage their Packs while out in the park. The Bark Zone’s Pack Leaders are a part of the family that Jenny sees as her family, along with her dog Samson and horse Eldino. We work together tirelessly to better the well-being of our charges by exercising, educating, and socializing their bodies as well as their brains which forms the core of The Bark Zone.


krista, business Alpha

Business Administration, Customer Service

Krista has always loved animals, having grown up on a hobby farm with two Golden Retrievers, two cats and, at one time, ducks, sheep and a cow (who, being the only cow in the barn, was sadly named “Lonesome”). She owned and rode horses until it was time to go to university, and always made sure she had either a cat or a dog in her home.

Krista has an MBA and a strong marketing background. Over the past 10 years, she has worked extensively with small businesses on their business and marketing plans, and has done research and strategic planning for large businesses and crown corporations.

Pets

Krista's family has an 11-year-old Black Lab named Rocky. He is enjoying old age and spends most of his time sleeping, wagging his tail and waiting patiently for his two-year-old human sister to drop food on the floor.

Personal Interests

  • Snowboarding

  • Cooking with her two-year-old daughter

  • Hiking

paula, commanding ALPHA

Office Manager, Administration, Customer Service

Originally wanting to go to vet school, Paula completed an undergrad in zoology, but was more interested in human-animal relationships than animal medicine. After adopting her doggie-soul mate, Lola, from the Toronto Humane Society, she became an advocate for dogs that were hard to adopt. Shortly after, she began working for that same shelter as a way to contribute. Paula also managed a downtown animal hospital, where she discovered her love for customer service. She has a masters' in humane education.

Pets

Paula lives with her husband Luis, their rescue mutt Oscar, and elderly kitty sisters, Oakley and Pi, who are still pretty angry about the dog.

Personal Interests

  • Hiking and nature-watching

  • Spending time with the people and animals she loves

  • Travelling with her husband


April, assistant alpha

Coordinator, Walking, Customer Service

April (aka the crazy dog lady) has always loved animals, especially dogs. When she was growing up she was usually found hanging out with the family golden or stopping to pet all the local dogs – asking first, of course! To this day she will still ask strangers on the street if she may pet their dog.

Over the last few years April has worked at different doggy daycares in Toronto. She finds herself at ease when surrounded by dogs, and genuinely loves helping owners feel comfortable knowing their pup is under her care.

Pets

April currently has one dog named Nixon. He is a 90-pound Catahoula Leopard that is the biggest mama’s boy. Nixon thinks he is a lap dog and will try and cuddle up to you no matter the size of seat you are sitting on. He is a big suck once you get to know him, but he can take a bit of time to warm up to you.

Personal Interests

  • Rollerblading

  • Knitting

  • Photography

diana, assistant ALPHA

Coordinator, Daycare, Grooming, Boarding, Customer Service, Visitor

Before Diana even knew how to crawl, it was obvious that she had a natural connection with animals.  She spent her childhood taking care of her own pets, along with all the injured or sick animals that she’d find and bring home.

Diana has worked in all fields of the animal care industry; boarding, daycare, grooming, dog walking, and veterinary care. She has spent many years volunteering her time with animal shelters and rescues as a dog walker, cat care attendant, foster mom, and freedom driver (rescue transport).  

Pets

Diana currently has one big mutt named Paris, a Cane Corso mix that she adopted from a shelter. She also has three cats. Vegas is the oldest, a cranky Calico that came from a stray litter. London is the middle child, an all-black, social butterfly. Kenya is the youngest; a shy little Tabby kitten who was dropped off to Diana when she was only 2 months old.

Personal Interests

  • Hiking with her dog Paris

  • Spending time outdoors

  • Social media


Edward, Pack Alpha

Visitor

Edward has always loved dogs. His last dog, Sadwa (Short Ass Dog With Attitude), was an energetic Jack Russell that Ed got as a pup when he lived in Jamaica. In 2007, when Sadwa was 5, she moved with her human family to Canada where Ed, his wife Cecilia, and four sons now live. Sadwa sadly passed away in 2017, but Ed’s love of dogs continues.

Ed practiced law in Jamaica for 33 years and is admitted to practice in Florida and Ontario. In 2017, Ed decided that he wanted a change of career and retired from practicing. Having gained years of experience with his beloved pet Sadwa, Edward now hopes to translate years of client service experience as a lawyer to a different set of clients – the furry four pawed kind!

Personal Interests

  • Cooking while being a stay-at-home-dad

  • Walks in the park

  • Voluntary Director and Board Member of the Advocacy Centre for the Elderly

Kim, Pack Alpha

Walker

After retiring from her first career at a young age, Kim decided to begin the next chapter of her life doing something she was truly passionate about. When she began walking dogs, she found that every day was literally a walk in the park with man's best friends. Kim loves going on adventures with her wonderful Packs and enjoys that no two days are ever alike. She feels that the love and affection she gives to the dogs in her care is always returned ten-fold with every wag of the tail and lick of the face!

Pets

Although Kim spent her life growing up around animals, she does not currently have any pets.

Personal Interests

  • Camping

  • Biking

  • Road Trips


JO ANN, PACK ALPHA

Walker

Jo Ann has been with the Bark Zone since 2006. She's from Edmonton, Alberta and has lived the farm life and the city life. She's had the best of both worlds but was always happiest working with the animals, especially the dogs. Jo Ann came to Toronto for a Plastic Engineer Tech job but found what really makes her happy, at The Bark Zone. She also met the love of her life, Nick, and he's a dog lover as well. Looks like she's here to stay!

Pets

Jo Ann has one cat named Spaz.

Personal Interests

  • Movies

  • Cooking

  • Walking

Ashton, Pack Alpha

Walker

Ashton has always had a love for animals growing up. When she was little, her parents started her off with hamsters as pets, and later graduated her to her first dog, a Bichon Frise named Jackson. After moving to Toronto on her own, she got a miniature Dachshund named Condiment who is the light of her life. After spending 10 years working as a cook in the restaurant industry, she decided that working with dogs would make her the happiest. After recently introducing a Black Lab rescue named Taco into her life, she knew she wanted to live the doggy loving lifestyle!

Pets

Condiment, a mini Dachshund, and Taco a Black Lab.

Personal Interests

  • Fitness

  • Days at the beach

  • Comedy


Alexandra, Pack Alpha

Walker

As a weekend walker, Alex gets to spend her weekends doing what she loves best - hanging out with dogs! Alex grew up with dogs always in the house; her grandmother was a Collie breeder for many years, which led to many childhood Collie dogs. While Alex’s day job doesn’t allow for a dog of her own, she loves her weekend time with her pack. Dog walking combines two of Alex’s favourite things: dogs and the outdoors, so this is truly a perfect fit for her. 

Personal Interests

  • Travelling

  • Reading

  • Movies

PATRICIA, Pack Alpha

Walker

Patricia's love for animals truly runs deep. She is a Veterinary Assistant at a local animal hospital and is devoted to providing professional pet care. Patricia has also always loved spending her spare time outdoors, no matter what the weather is doing. With The Bark Zone, Patricia is able to combine these two passions and fill her entire day with her Pack of playful pooches.

Pets

Patricia and her husband Tom have 3 beautiful cats and look forward to adopting a dog in the near future.

Personal Interests

  • Hiking

  • Cycling

  • Camping


andrea, PACK ALPHA

Walker, Boarder

Bio coming soon!

Mark, Pack Alpha

Boarder, Walker

Mark has been walking and boarding dogs for over ten years. Even still, he shares a unique bond with his Packs and always looks forward to greeting his special, furry friends. The dogs he brings home to board always have free range of the house and often end up sleeping in bed with him and his "human partner". Mark believes that working with animals is a labour of love and feels truly privileged to be able to care for dogs every single day. 

Pets

Mark has a border collie named Holly.

Personal Interests

  • Animals

  • Music

  • Fine Wine


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Mark Y, PACK ALPHA

Driver, Walker, Boarder

Bio coming soon!

 

Julie, PACK ALPHA

Boarder, Sitter, Walker

For as long as she can remember, Julie has always loved animals. She also realized at a young age that the feeling was mutual. After life in the corporate world, Julie was ready to get out from behind her desk. With a special affinity for dogs, including of course, her own, Julie revels in the thrill of leading her Packs on their daily outings. She shows her passion every day as she em”barks” on the next adventure. A wise person once said, “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life”. Come to think of it, her Packs feel the same way.  

Pets

Julie has a miniature poodle named Maggie.

Personal Interests

  • Spending time with family

  • Golfing

  • Hanging out with friends


DOUG, PACK ALPHA

Boarder, Sitter, Walker

Following 25 years in computer sales Doug has chosen a career closer to his heart. He has a long family history that has always involved the love of Dogs.  He spent a great deal of time over the years caring for and walking dogs of all shapes and sizes. Doug loves taking out an energetic pack and then see them sleeping in his Jeep on the way home after a great trip to the park. Few things are more rewarding than looking into the eyes of a happy dog. 

Pets

Doug has had rescues over the last 20 years, including a Cocka-Poo and 3 Cocker Spaniels. His newest family member, Jack, came to live with him few years ago, and loves the co-pilot seat in Doug's Jeep during dog walks.

Personal Interests

  • Cottage

  • Golf

  • Movies

MEL, PACK ALPHA

Walker, Boarder, Visitor

Bio coming soon!

 


sam, PACK ALPHA

Walker

Having grown up on a farm, Sam has been surrounded by animals from a young age. This grew  her passion for animal care and her love for dogs. After years of working in retail, Sam realized she no longer had the drive for sales and wanted to move into some she would really enjoy. She decided to give dog walking a try, and after years of working for herself and other walking companies, Sam jumped at the chance to join The Bark Zone's pack. Sam has now been walking dogs professionally for 5 years and would not change her job for the world!

Pets

Frank, a 2-year-old Cane Corso, and Beans, a 13-year-old Toy Poodle Pug mix.

Personal Interests

  • Soccer

  • Painting

  • Hiking

 

JOANNE & BILL, PACK ALPHAs

Boarders

Joanne and Bill had always talked about boarding dogs one day, but when Bill had a total knee replacement in November of 2014, Joanne thought no time like the present to begin the journey. She believed it would aid in Bill’s rehabilitation if he had to get out and walk on a daily basis while he was home recovering from his surgery. Needless to say, his recovery was extraordinary! When they found themselves “empty nesters” sooner than they expected, they decided to continue boarding dogs to ensure the house was filled with love, laughter and even chaos at times, as things were much too quiet for Joanne! They treat every dog that comes into their home as though it were their own. Their kids ask for updates and pictures on the dog(s) that are currently visiting. Even some of the neighbours have come to know some of their regulars by name. Joanne maintains, and Bill agrees, that boarding dogs was one of the best things they’ve ever done.”

Pets

Bill and Joanne think it is hysterical the way their soon-to-be 13 year old Golden named Jake seems indifferent to the dogs. They quickly learned that Jake is not a fan of group photos with her new canine “friends”!

Personal Interests

  • Walking Dogs

  • Playing Fetch

  • Swimming


Nicole, PACK ALPHA

Walker, Boarder

Nicole has lived in Toronto all her life, and has joined The Bark Zone after working in the corporate workforce as an Account Manager for 20 years. 

Nicole wanted to change up her life and do something she loves. Having always loved pets, and having had many, such as cats, dogs, gerbils, hamsters, fish, rabbits, birds and snakes (but not all at the same time!) a transition to full time dog walking was a natural step. Being outside walking the trails of the city while bonding and caring for the dogs she walks is a fulfilling role change. Nicole also does home boarding where the dogs can feel right at home, get the love they are missing while their parents/owners are away, and be safe and happy. 

Pets

Nicole lost her beloved Pixie in February 2016, and now their home is filled only with her partner Ed’s beautiful black cat named Bubbles. They both decided that boarding dogs will fulfill their desires to walk, care for and love many dogs.

Personal Interests

  • Cycling and hiking

  • Gardening

  • Hosting fun theme parties

Alana, PACK ALPHA

Walker

With a background in environmental studies and not-for-profit work (focusing on animal welfare), Alana realized that finding a role where she can work with animals, improve their lives, and have the chance to work outside was a dream. It was a no-brainer that a walking opportunity with The Bark Zone would be a great fit for her. The time Alana spends with her new pup family has now acted as inspiration for kids stories that she also writes!

Pets

Alana has two 8-year-old rescue cats named Sassy and Zirca.

Personal Interests

  • Painting

  • Horseback Riding

  • Stilting


ANNETTE, PACK ALPHA

Boarder

Dogs have been a part of Annette’s everyday life since she was born. She would drive her mom crazy when she was young, bringing home every stray around and asking to keep them all.  While she has always had canine companions, she’s not species-specific: Annette’s also had ducks, rats, lizards, birds, cats – she even caught a stray horse in her field when she was 11. 

Although trained as a vet tech, Annette pursued a career as a research analyst to support her two boys, who have also grown up with the love of dogs. Her sons treated their Dalmatian, Cassie, as they would a human sister, and believed that she was a dog with a human soul.

Pets

Annette has a talkative Chihuahua named Pebbles.

Personal Interests

  • Woodworking

  • Camping

  • Restoring/re-purposing antiques

Nancy, PACK ALPHA

Boarder

Nancy has always surrounded herself with furry buddies, often as a rescuer and a long-time foster. She has nursed and loved dozens of troubled and abused dogs, preparing them to successfully join their forever homes.

She shares her home and family with her two Formosan Mountain Dogs rescued from Taiwan. Her home has a large “escape proof yard” and a dog park near her home.

She has boarded with The Bark Zone since 2016.


Tanu, PACK ALPHA

Walker

Tanu is an avid animal lover and used to volunteer at a shelter where she looked after stray dogs and cats. Spending time with furry beings is were Tanu finds her Zen, so when she moved to Toronto last year, she found The Bark Zone and knew it would be a great way to get her dog fix. When she’s not working with animals, she helps humans as a recruiter in her organization’s Human Resources department. 

Pets

Two cats, Patches (11), and Duncan (9).

Personal Interests

  • Running

  • Volunteering

  • Reading

Valerie, PACK ALPHA

Groomer

Bio coming soon!