A few words about our team:

We strive to offer our entire team a company culture of Kindness, Positivity, Honesty,  and Respect. Each team member is important to us and we care about their safety, as well as mental and physical health as much as we do for your dog’s.

Breaks are always paid and self-regulated to ensure we are all mindful of the need to take care of our brains and our bodies. Imagine an 8 hour day full of barking, cleaning, and picking up poop around the clock! It ain’t all puppy snuggling 😉

CAREER OPPORTUNITIES: Please send cover letter and resume to ONLY candidates with relevant experience and education will be considered.


There are no current positions available, please check back!

Stefania Butkovic - Owner/Operator - She/Her

About the owner:

Stefania has been studying in many different avenues to learn all about dogs. She is studying to become a certified science based dog trainer through The Academy for Dog Trainers. She regularly attends seminars and courses in an effort to stay up to date in her field of work and to continue her education in the science behind your fuzzbutts!

Her husband Jon is known for being the local Dog Taxi Service and is Pet First Aid Certified through Walks ‘N Wags. They share Cassie the 11 year old minpin/chi whom they adopted 10 years ago, and Bruna a 7 year old pug/sharpei that they added to their home 6 years ago.

Lack of industry regulations:

After our big win (TWO awards) at the New West Platinum Awards 2016!

Stefania is a plant-powered advocate for animal welfare.  Before diving into formal education as dog trainer, Stefania saw a need to speak up about the dangers lurking behind closed doors of dog daycares. After working in some gruesome conditions at dog daycares to gain hands-on experience, some things she has witnessed are:

  • dogs with mouths muzzled shut all day for barking
  • dogs being grabbed by the scruff of the neck and tossed angrily into kennels
  • prong collars used behind owner’s backs
  • even water boarding of animals when groomers got impatient was not uncommon.

The lack of regulation is something that should  be taken very seriously. Stefania is working hard to make that message loud and clear to the public by educating her community on the physical and emotional damage that can be done to animals in these facilities. Conditions were terribly stressful and abusive mentally and physically for the dogs.

Educational info and seminar attendance:

Stefania continues to pursue her love of working with animals 5 years later.  She is a  lover of community and entrepreneurship. After years of brain storming, she finally started “Mindful Mutts” combining all things dog in one place. She launched a pilot project of a Low-Stress Dog Daycare & Training facility in May of 2016 in an effort to boldly set new standards of care for the industry. In January of 2018, she opened the second location in the beautiful neighborhood of Downtown New West. <3

In Spring of 2020 Stefania started her journey in furthering her education in dog behaviour. She was accepted into The Academy for Dog Trainers and is currently a freshman, working through the intensive 2 year program.

Stefania has been Pet First Aid certified through Walks ‘N’ Wags since 2014 and has been a Certified Pet First Aid Instructor for over 3 years. To date she has certified well over 200 people!  WNW is a national leader in Pet First Aid that is veterinary approved!

Stefania is a proud member of the Shock-Free Coalition, and as of July 2018 is volunteering as the Regional Coordinator for BC! Read the press release here.



Jelena Ukalovic - Operations + Client Care Manager - She/Her
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Jelena (right)


Jelena’s passion for dogs has led her to Mindful Mutts, and has continued to encourage her to expand her knowledge about dog behaviour by keeping up with science based dog behaviour courses. More certification and seminar attendance details can be found below!

Thankful for the guidance and knowledge Mindful Mutts has given her, she has raised her own pup Duke into the loving goofball he is. Jelena hopes to becomes a school teacher in the near future. <3


Mellissa Schubert -Downtown New West Manager -


Mellissa has a strong passion for animal welfare, having volunteered with animals and having worked within the animal industry she found Mindful Mutts, and wanted to join a team that valued continued education in dog behaviour to ensure that each dog is getting the best possible care.

Mellissa has a passion for learning and uses this knowledge while raising her pup Luka and her two cats Jude and Quentin, and would love to work towards becoming a Vet technician. When Mellissa isn’t learning about dogs she loves to learn new languages, she speaks Japanese and is currently working on learning Russian and Norwegian

2020 Brian Hare’s “Dog Emotion and Cognition” course completed
2020 Karen Pryor “Dog Trainer Foundations
2020 Lori Nanan’s Dogs 101! A Free Mini Course
2020 Jean Donaldon’s “Dog Training 101

Laura Savaschi - Sapperton Supaviser

Laura has spent her life caring for each and every animal that had been dropped off on her doorstep, known as the towns baby healer in Romania, she nursed countless kittens and baby animals back to health. Growing up in Romania Laura grew up around a lot of stray animals, which sparked her interest in animal behaviour.

Laura believes that the mental well being is just as important as physical well being of a animal, and she puts that knowledge and understanding to use with her 18 year old Romanian stray dog, and her two cats everyday.

Martha Bull - She/Her

Martha has found her way into the Mindful Mutts family, and found she really loves the hands on aspect of working with the dogs. Education is important to Martha when it comes to animal care, it’s also something she can always use when parenting her two kitties at home.

While she may not know what she wants to do when she grows up quite yet, she is happy taking care of and enriching the lives of each dog that comes in to Mindful Mutts. Martha has completed Dog Safe, Low Stress Canine & Feline handling and restraint, and more info on Wrangler studies can be found below:


Carolina Bergonzoni - She/Her

Carolina is a great addition to Mindful Mutts, as a strong advocate for science based dog training and handling, she believes that listening to what your dog wants and needs, keeping training fun and rewarding, and allowing dogs to make choices is the key to a happy and healthy dog.

When Carolina isn’t spending her time education herself on dog behaviour,  she can be found hanging out with her doggo Avon Barksdale.

Angela Nguyen - She/Her

Angela became passionate about science based dog training when it came to her dog Hank, and has continued to advocate for animal welfare because she believes that every animal has the right to a good life free of pain, force, fear or intimidation. When she isn’t learning about dogs, Angela is crocheting all sorts of fun and exciting and possible dog inspired items.

Quentin Cook

Bio to come!

Rachel Hatfield

Rachel’s love of animals started at a young age, having worked at a veterinary hospital she understands the value of low stress handling when it comes to animals, and making sure they are both mentally and physically cared for.

She looks forward to continuing her education and learning more about dog behaviour to better help each animal, including her own four rat ladies. When she is not working at Mindful Mutts Rachel is hard at work studying to become a massage therapist. 



coming soon

Bio to come!


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