Meet the Owners! 


james Gitto

James has been a dog lover since he was a child, after growing up with German Shepherds in the Pocono Mountains. He started walking dogs and helping owners to better understand their canine companions from a young age. In early 2016 he adopted his best friend Kiera, an energetic German Shepherd. When he first adopted Kiera he found himself traveling all over the city so he could get her to different appointments. James quickly realized that it would be much more convenient if all the services he needed for her were in one place. Shortly after this realization the idea of BarkPark was born. James has a business degree from Temple Universityโ€™s Fox School of Business, is Vice President & Zoning Chair of West Passyunk Neighbors Association, a board member of Girard Estate Neighbors Association, board member for the Newbold CDC, created the VisionZero Direct Action group, and is South Philadelphiaโ€™s biggest fan!


Katherine Wade

As a former Animal Care Intern at the Philadelphia Zoo, Katherine has extensive experience handling both domestic and exotic animals. She rescued her miniature poodle, Alfie in 2011 while earning her Geography and Urban Studies degree from Temple University. Nurturing Alfie back to good health inspired her to get involved in the advocacy for animal welfare. She has become a foster parent, a volunteer, and even a feral cat-trapper, for the Trap-Neuter-Release initiative throughout south Philadelphia. Katie is a board member of the Stray Cat Relief Fund and Green chair of the West Passyunk Neighbors Association. In 2017 she helped create BarkPark working with James to build the premier pet care provider of Philadelphia. Katie's attention to detail and extensive understanding of canine body language ensures the safety of all the dogs in BarkPark's care.