Martha’s Menagerie was started in September 2000 and has been serving the dog boarding needs of Sydenham and the surrounding area ever since.
Martha Fortier created Martha’s Menagerie for two reasons. Turning forty and living in Montreal with an office job, she realized that life was not everything she had hoped for and was looking for more of a challenge and a more active job that included animals and the outdoors. Having grown up in a home with canine companionship, she found it lacking in her own life. After reading an article of a couple who were creating a crate-free environment for dogs and falling in love with the Kingston area when her parents moved to the area two years before a life changing decision was made and Martha’s Menagerie was born.
The second reason that Martha’s Menagerie was formed was her parents’ dog Thor, a greyhound cross that was found in a plastic bag with his sister at the tender age of 3 months. If it was a confinement issue or something else Thor could not be placed in a kennel or crate without becoming much stressed. He would be destructive to his bedding and crate causing his gums and nails to bleed as a result. Finding a boarding facility that did not have crates or a kennel or that even walked the dogs to help reduce his stress level was impossible. Thus the idea of a crate-free environment for dog boarding was hatched. Thor has since passed over to the Rainbow Bridge, but I will be forever grateful for his inspiration.
After 17 years of boarding both dogs and cats, Martha has created quite a pack and has accumulated four dogs of her own: Sterling, a male blue merle Australian Shepherd, Rebound, a male bi-black Australian Shepherd, Gilit, a female bi-black Australian Shepherd and Flash, her newest rescue, a male Australian Shepherd. After more than a decade of experience with all types of breeds, from Great Danes to Chihuahuas, Martha has learned to read “doggie language” and is able to handle many situations that arise when a lot of dogs, social or not, are placed together thus ensuring a safe environment for all types and all ages of canines.