Pets & Professionals

Article by Savannah Vasquez

Photography by Shanna Magnuson & Jacqueline Lucille

Originally published in Destin City Lifestyle

Social Shepherds   

Katie Anderson of Let’s Get Social is allergic to dogs, so the fact that she now owns two Australian Shepherds is a testament to her love for her pets; a trait her two pups easily reciprocate. 

“It was a spur-of-the-moment thing,” Katie said of her choice to get a dog. “We got Russell as a quarantine puppy, and I kind of just learned to deal with my allergies.”  

Katie graduated from Troy University the same year she adopted Russel, in 2020, and began her career in retail and real estate marketing. After seven years of that, Katie decided to branch out on her own and launched Let’s Get Social earlier this year.   

“I love working for myself,” Katie said. “Let’s Get Social offers social media management, logo design, graphic design, and branding photography.”  

Recently, Katie adopted a little brother for Russell; Ripely. Rip made his debut on the social platform in June and is already winning the hearts of Katie’s friends, family and clients.   

“Australian Shepherds are very human-like dogs,” Katie said. “They are very loyal; very about their people.”   

Wine & Westie

Jessie Orbovich, owner of wine label Slay Rose’, is a self-described dog person. Although she grew up with Golden and Labrador Retrievers, Jessie is now the proud mama of Martha, a West Highland Terrier, and Teddy, a Cavachon.  

“I love my doggies,” Jessie said. “Martha got her name because she looked like a little old lady, and Teddy, my boyfriend’s dog, is just so fluffy!”  

When it comes to their personalities, Jessie said the pair couldn’t be more different. 

“Teddy is sweet, very well-mannered and just the kindest thing. He’s a little snuggle muffin,” Jessie said. “Martha is wild and crazy and is not scared of anything, she’s definitely the wild child.” 

Even with their opposing personalities, Jessie said her favorite thing to do with both pups is snuggle.  

“I’m constantly trying to get them to snuggle with me,” she laughed. “I love their snuggles, kisses, hugs and of course, walks on the beach.” 

Jessie moved back to the Destin area three years ago after a successful business venture in Boston. What started out as a slogan to help sell vintage t-shirts quickly morphed into a wine brand as Jessie trademarked the phrase “Slay Rose’.”  

“I owned a consignment store in Boston, and I was thinking of something catchy to print on my shirts,” Jessie said. “I asked my young employee, ‘What are all the kids saying these days?’ and she said “Slay” so I tossed around some ideas and landed on “Slay Rose’.” From there, I did a fashion show and that shirt line sold out immediately.” 

Jessie knew she was on to something special and set out to find the best winemaker to create the finest rose’. Today, Slay Rosé of Abiouness Wine's, is a small batched, vineyard to bottle,100-percent pinot noir rosé out of Napa Valley.

“Everybody does rose’ now, but ours, being a Pinot Noir rose’, is a drier, bolder rose,’” Jessie said. “It’s a very nice wine; a wine person’s wine.” 

Yorkie Brothers  

Have you ever heard of a Yorkshire Terrier guard dog? That’s just what Sarah Timmons of Scenic Sotheby’s International Realty calls her little Yorkie named Bruiser.   

“At my first job out of college, they let us bring our dogs to work and Bruiser became our unofficial company guard dog, they even put him up on our website with a little bio,” she said.   

When asked if his name fit his personality, Sarah said while he got his name for being rough-and-tumble today, at the ripe old age of 15, Bruiser is the sweetest soul.   

In addition to Bruiser, Sarah has another Yorkie; 7-year-old Rudy. While Rudy is mischievous and gets into trouble, Bruiser is easygoing and empathetic; the pair seem to balance each other out.  

“They are a funny little pair,” she said. “I really do believe that Rudy has kept Bruiser young for so long by just being so pesky. Rudy looks up to Bruiser like a big brother; it’s so cute.”  

Just like their human owners, Sarah said her Yorkie sons love their routine. Their morning walk has become one of Sarah’s favorite pastimes because her dogs have a unique routine.   

“When we wake up and go on our morning walk, they have their favorite spot on the golf course,” she said. “It’s so funny because every day Bruiser goes to the same little tee box and runs down the side of it and does a little hop and his ears flop; it’s just his favorite thing.”  

Now, ten years into that routine, Sarah said she is happy she decided to move back to the place that held her childhood memories.   

"My grandparents moved here in 1991, so I grew up knowing this area as a second home," Sarah said. "I decided to move to the beach and do real estate." 

Two & Two

Whitney Cooley of Scenic Sotheby’s International Realty is a rare Miramar Beach native. Growing up in the Crystal Beach area, Whitney is now raising her own family on her home beaches. Along with her husband Michael and her daughters, 12-year-old Brinkley, and 3-year-old Briar, the Cooley’s have two fur babies as well; Yeti, a Golden Retriever and King, a King Charles Cavalier Spaniel.  

“Yeti is goofy and sweet and probably the most chill and relaxed big dog you would ever meet,” Whitney said. “We sometimes call him Eeyore because he is so laid-back. King is a snuggler, but he also loves to play and he loves to chase squirrels in the backyard.”  

Whitney said the family loves to go to the park, on walks or bike rides and to Seaside together. She added that her dogs are huge crowd pleasers so when people notice them, the two pups bask in the attention.  

“Both of my dogs love attention from anyone who will give it to them,” Whitney laughed. “Anywhere where kids are around, they love to show how cute they are.” 

When asked if either of the dogs favor a certain family member over the others, Whitney said, neither dog is picky, although both dogs like to sleep with her.  

“Yeti sleeps at my feet every night and King likes to sleep on my head,” she said. “But honestly, my dogs love everyone. If you give them attention, they will love on you." 

Whitney joked that she has her two girls and her two boys so her little family is complete. 

"My two fur babies are the best!" she said. "They are adorable." 

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