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About Us

 
 
 
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Our mission is to bring best-of-breed products and one-of-a-kind experiences to pets and their humans.

 

About Pussy & Pooch

You lead a stylish, progressive life. Your pet companion should, too. That's the thinking behind Pussy & Pooch, the ultimate pet destination where convenience meets community in a design-forward, social experience for pets and people. 

Located in Beverly Hills, Downtown Los Angeles, Belmont Shore, and Downtown Long Beach, Pussy & Pooch is an innovative pet lifestyle boutique geared toward the modern pet. With a focus on nutrition and green living for pets, we’re dedicated to providing an interactive and informative environment. Our unique Amenities and Services bring a playful and edgy twist to the traditional pet store experience. We set out to create a new retail concept by fusing traditional boutique amenities with exclusive modern luxuries featuring distinctive, yet moderately priced quality products, services, and everyday essentials.

Our Values

Wellness

We believe wellness is the foundation of happiness for both pets and humans. We’re passionate about integrated health, built on exercise, nutrition, preventative care, and continued education.

Community

Our colorful community of pets and their humans is the reason we exist. We’re honored to be a part of that community and proud to be actively involved in keeping it happy and healthy.

Innovation

Innovation is what defines us. We’re inspired to do what no one else has done in pet care, to invent novel, new services and products that enhance the tiny lives of our pets and not so tiny lives of our clients.

Design

Design is the foundation of our identity. From the details in our branding to the look and feel of our stores, our appreciation for design communicates a premium, contemporary modern design that mirrors the lives of our customers.

Luxury

We believe the new luxury isn’t about extravagance. Today’s luxury is about purpose and function, supporting the things that matter to us, and getting the most out of life for ourselves and our pets.

Bi-Petual Petrepreneurs

Janene Zakrajsek

Founder / Chief Creative Officer / Petrepreneur

A pet lifestyle expert, Janene is passionate about animal health and wellness. Equally dedicated to cats and dogs, the petrepreneur delights in discovering and providing truly unique, design-forward experiences, products and services to pets and their humans. Prior to launching Pussy & Pooch , Janene was a marketing professional, specializing in content management and communication strategies, as well as direct response and online initiatives. Her career began in graphic design for an accessory manufacturer before joining the Marketing team at FIDM/The Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising. Her knowledge and experience in different aspects of design, retail, and visual merchandising brings a powerful blend of creativity and business savvy to her professional endeavors. She is frequently quoted in the media and industry publications. Janene and her founding partner and husband, Rob, opened their first Pussy & Pooch location in 2007 and reside in downtown Los Angeles with their dog Jaxxon and rescue cats Minxx, Mia, Enzo, and Nadja. 

Robert Gaudio

Founder / Chief Operating Officer / Petrepreneur 

Rob’s entrepreneurial nature, passion for pets and outstanding social skills with furry and human friends makes him an excellent petrepreneur. Prior to Pussy & Pooch, he was a founder and partner at MEA Digital, a top 50 interactive marketing, strategy and services firm. A marketing veteran with more than 15 years of traditional and online media experience, Rob puts his business and marketing expertise to work by strategically determining new growth opportunities, optimizing Pussy & Pooch’s online marketing presence, and growing its online store. A native of Toronto, he received his MBA from the University of Miami and enjoys the warm weather of Southern California, but remains true to his roots with a deep love of hockey.

Management Team

Danielle Tortorello, Grooming Manager

Danielle brings more than 15 years of experience to Pussy & Pooch, as the Grooming Manager. Her key responsibility is developing all grooming and styling procedures, including operations standards for the Bathhouse at Pussy & Pooch locations in Downtown Los Angeles, Belmont Shore and Beverly Hills. A graduate of the New York School of Dog Grooming, she specializes in toy breeds and drop coats, and is well-known in the Los Angeles community for her precision cuts and dedication to customer service. Danielle finished in the top 3 of Animal Planet's TV show competition “Groomer Has It”. Danielle lives in the Los Angeles area with her miniature schnauzer Georgia Brave.  A rescue advocate, Danielle donates her services to rescue organizations, grooming dogs looking for their forever homes.

Ashlee Pierce, APDT | Manager of Training & Fitness

A born and bred Californian, Ashlee discovered her passion for working with animals early on. Growing up in an interspecies household, she honed her animal behavior and communication skills on everything from bunnies and snakes, to parrots and horses. An avid Equestrian, Ashlee spent most of her childhood on horseback, either in the competition ring or in the mountains with a dog at her side. As the years progressed, canines shifted to become the focus of her professional career. With a background in Comparative Psychology and more than 10 years of experience as a professional trainer, Ashlee brings an intuitive understanding of both dogs and the humans who love them to her position at Pussy & Pooch. As the Manager of Training & Fitness, Ashlee’s key responsibilities are developing training curriculum and maintaining standards of operational excellence for the Social Club and Training Lab in Beverly Hills. Ashlee shares her miniature farm with a menagerie including three dogs, four cats, a flock chickens, a bevy of reptiles and a myriad of fish.

Karen DeMarco, Board Member / Advisor

A communications and marketing executive with more than 20 years' experience within consumer lifestyle, e-commerce, entertainment, emerging media and technology sectors, Karen's career spans both agency and client-side expertise. An advisor to Pussy & Pooch prior to opening its first location in 2007, she is an active board member and involved with but not limited to strategic business planning, key insight to marketplace trends, managing brand identity, public relations, and social marketing strategies. DeMarco lives in Beverly Hills and has two pup-loves, Teddy and Abby.

Our Inspiration

 
 

Minx, Chief Scratching Officer

Minxx is a regular shadow-chasing-Super Hero who never met a piece of cardboard that she didn't like. Her senior status is characterized by maturity and stability. Working from the home office she's a techie, she loves computers and speakerphones and keeps things running smoothly. She spends her days off scratching in between napping and leaping off tall counters.


 

Jaxxon, Chief Counselor

Treat Bar Specialist and Pethouse Ladies' Man is always emotionally available and ready to welcome you with hugs and licks. Jaxxon's role is to greet you with love, melt you with sad eyes, and guide your selection at our Treat Bar. He willingly volunteers to sample and taste to ensure your pup's satisfaction. A tad insecure by nature, he looks for any and all opportunities for a smooch, heavy petting, or whatever humans (and big, black hairy dogs) are willing to dole out. If you've got a bully breed, don't be offended...You're just not Jaxxon's type.


 

Nadja, Chief Fitness & Wellness Officer

Nadja just may have been a Russian gymnast in a former life. She has the sleekness of panther and the agility of a tree monkey, earning her the nickname 'panther-monkey'. Only her hearty appetite for fresh meaty meals slows her obsession for daily workouts, hunting, and acrobatics. Both competitive and jealous, she demands the spotlight.


 

Mia, Chief Tree Dweller

Chief Tree Dweller and Security Supervisor, Mia works mostly from our home office keeping a watchful crossed-eye on the entire internal staff from several high observation points. In the evening, she makes her rounds prowling the external perimeter for intruders, aka crickets and such, attempting to make their way inside from the garden terrace. She delights in stalking. Mia takes her responsibilities seriously allowing us to stay focused on important matters, ironically she is usually the one caught stealing with her paw in the treat jar.


 

Frida, Art, Fashion, & Design Director (retired)

Frida (as in Kahlo) had a keen appreciation for the arts and was often seen socializing with artists and the urbane in the Bailey Gallery. A true fashionista with an obsession for shoes and designer handbags, she lived large on leather... whatever the price. This moderncat mascot gave her howl of approval on all in-store styles, from window displays to product merchandising...a rare breed indeed. Retired in 2011 after launching our Meow Mingle cat socials, the White Lion lives on in spirit.


 

Cosmo, Chief Barking Officer (retired) 

Cosmo (as in Kramer) could bark like a horse. We never told him he was NOT that big - he had a Napoleon complex. Barking orders at whoever would listen, this Jack Russell spent his days dreaming of Scoobie snacks and becoming a DJ. He dutifully performed his responsibilities as the official mascot by greeting everyone, maintaining the in-store hydrant, and performing tricks for treats. He retired in 2009.


 

Bailey, Chief Napping Officer (retired)

Bailey always thought he was a Supermodel, who preferred sleeping and preening to anything else that was b-or-ing. Purring until the very end of his struggle, he now spends his days poised into a perfect and permanent snuggle. Retired in late 2007 just as Pussy & Pooch launched our first location, Bailey continues to inspire our passion for natural animal nutrition, health and wellness.

Join our team.

We are always looking for talented pet lovers to join our team. Become a pet retail expert, master trainer or fabulous pet stylist. Get started now.