About Us

Theodore Edward Bear

Founder, Owner, Pomeranian

“Just call me TED!”

TED - Theodore Edward Bear

Ted weighs four pounds. His age is unknown. He has no teeth. His behavior tends to be a bit quirky. He loves to cuddle.

Ted was found by animal control officers on the streets of National City. He was malnourished, underweight and covered in grease and scabs. The vet’s theory was that he had been sleeping under cars. The fact that he could survive any time on the streets of National City speaks to his tenacity and love of life.

Ted was neutered and had his four remaining teeth removed at the time of his adoption in November of 2012.

In 2014, Ted was attacked by two dogs at the same time. The leg wound he received became infected. It required daily wet/dry bandage changes. He recovered over time.

In 2015, Ted was attacked again, this time by a wolf-hybrid. He received a wound just above his eye. He almost lost the eye but recovered again.

In 2016, Ted got too excited, jumped off the couch and broke his leg. He was then diagnosed with Osteosarcoma (bone cancer) and had his entire front right leg including his scapula amputated. Within days of the amputation he was running around the house as if nothing had happened. In fact, he seemed to get around better with three legs than with four. Four had just been too many.

In 2017, Ted was diagnosed with Inflammatory Bowel Disease, likely due to his cancer. He became gravely ill with a liver and gallbladder infection due to bile backing up into his system from the IBD. He came very close to losing his life at that time because he was too sick to eat due to the high-powered antibiotics he was being given to fight the infection. During this time, he lost 20% of his body weight. In a last-ditch effort, he was surgically fitted with a feeding tube into his neck that pumped food, with the help of a syringe, directly into his stomach. This went on for a month before he fully recovered, and the tube could be removed.

Ted’s journey with cancer and infection lead his parents, Jonathan and Jaymie, to educate themselves about a natural and holistic approach to pet wellness. Ted is thriving thanks to his strictly organic, holistic diet and supplements that support his health. He also receives chiropractic, acupuncture and cold laser treatments to help with skeletal issues due to his amputation. His cancer is in full remission.

Never complaining about all his hardships Ted gives back to the community by doing pet therapy visits with a 94-year-old house bound woman, who had dogs all her life but is now unable to care for them, as well as with the Live Up program, a yearly camp for adults with down syndrome.

His dark, sparkling eyes and inquisitive bird-like behavior charm even the most jaded of folk. In his spare time Ted loves to eat fried eggs.

Jaymie Lavan


Jaymie Lavan

For the last three years Jaymie has owned and operated a successful pet sitting and dog walking company where she consults with pet parents about nutrition and holistic pet care. She is a certified Pet Nutrition Expert through Dogs Naturally Magazine University and Pet First Aid and CPR Certified by the American Red Cross.

Most of her career prior to her current endeavor has been in accounting and business consulting. She started her accounting career at Woods Humane Society on the Central Coast of California where she set up and established their first small retail store. After leaving Woods Humane Society, she started her own accounting and consulting firm. She worked with two other humane societies to revamp their retail store sections, establish inventory control procedures and manage successful merchandising and promotional sales campaigns.

Jaymie also worked as a technical consultant for the Women’s Business Center and the Small Business Development Centers at UC Monterey and UC Davis. She taught courses on business accounting and interpreting financial statements. She also consulted one-on-one with prospective and current business owners on business plan writing, cash flow projections, financial statement analysis and business acquisitions.

When Jaymie moved to San Diego in 2012, she took a position as a mid-level accountant at the San Diego Humane Society. One of her main roles was to manage the inventory control in the retail stores at three of their shelter locations. She also set up integrated point of sale systems with inventory transfer features between the three locations. One of the successful challenges of this role was to set up the technology and systems procedures for offsite retail and adoption events to sync with the current inventory and sales. She was also in charge of training new store employees on the point of sale systems and inventory control procedures.

Jonathan Lavan


Jonathan Lavan, Fudgie, Ted, and Jaymie Lavan

Jonathan Lavan has been an animal and nature photographer and environmental education specialist for the last 10 years. As an underwater and topside photographer, he has been a teacher, speaker, author, and research associate for many different well-known and little-known environmental and education non-profits. He specializes in developing educational lectures and social media campaigns to help smaller home grown companies reach their full potential. His special skill set will provide dog portrait photography services in the store and on location as well as social media campaign management, educational lecture organization, and newsletter and blog oversight.



Janine Marr

Retail Manager, Community Programs

Janine Marr

Meet Janine Marr. Janine has been with Team Ted since July 1st, 2018. From the age of 5, like most kids, she wanted to become a vet. As time went by, she realized maybe Veterinary Medicine wasn’t her calling, but the animal field was where she belonged. In high school she spent her Spring Breaks in Iowa helping her family with their Veterinary Practice. At 15 she was the youngest Puppy Raiser with Canine Support Teams (and successfully raised 5 dogs after her first). She has a 20+ year work history with companies like PetTech, Petco, Helen Woodward Animal Center, Puptown Doggy Daycare and her most recent 8 year career with The County of San Diego Department of Animal Services.

Once the county started outsourcing the department it gave Janine an opportunity to figure out what she truly loves. That’s educating people on how to become better pet owners, interacting with the community and the rescue world. Ted’s was the perfect fit. As Store Manager, Events Coordinator and Rescue Coordinator she gets to do what she does best. Helping owners become the best they can be for their pet, interacting with the community and helping animals get homes.

When Janine isn’t working with animals, she spends her time volunteering with rescues like Frosted Faces Foundation, Horses of Tir Na Nog, Pit Bull Rescue San Diego and San Diego Pittie Parents. Like anyone in the rescue world, Janine has a collection of pets that reside in “The Marr’s House of Misfits”. She has a cat named Cricket who only likes her son and Elliott (Pit Bull Mix), who she adopted as an 8 month old puppy with a heart condition and was told he wouldn’t see past 2 years old (even though they swore they were done with puppies and only wanted senior dogs). Elliott is now 6 and has developed Cushings. With the help of some amazing vets and supplements, he’s on the road to recovery. Next would be Herman D. Tortoise who was found on the side of the road and brought to the shelter really thin with a bad Upper Respiratory Infection. After that comes Piglett, a now 2 year old Guinea Pig that was a cruelty case when she was really young. Their most recent rescue was Fiona, a 7 year old Pit Bull from Saving Slim Foundation who has developed quite a social media following. Hopefully soon she will become the store and breed ambassador for Ted’s. Throw in 150 gallons worth of unwanted fish and that rounds out their house. Janine has a soft spot for “frosty faces” so don’t be shocked when she stops what she’s doing to give your pet a little love and maybe a “squish and kiss on the snooter”.

JD Staten

Manager, Retail Operations

JD Staten

JD Staten is a seasoned customer service and retail manager, who has achieved success with well-established companies such as the Walt Disney Company, LEGOLAND California Resort, and a few local natural pet food stores . After spending more than 12 years in customer service, and the last 10 in management, JD understands how to serve the customer and what will fulfill the customer’s needs.

Most recently, and for the last 6 years, JD has been in management of natural pet food retail stores, successfully managing a myriad of store operations. JD is a Pet Nutrition Specialist certified by both Dog Naturally University and Petcurean University. He has been trained on customer service and situational awareness, making him an engaging asset with the mindset to serve the community. He is also working toward completing his bachelor’s degree in Retail Management at MiraCosta College.

JD’s training and experience is why Ted’s decided to bring him on as Store Manager. His friendly personality, understanding of natural pet needs, and care for our customers will help make Ted’s a welcoming and supportive part of the community that can improve the care and life of your family pets.

Christina Suliin

Lead Dog Groomer

Christina Suliin and her family

From an early age, Christina has always had a soft spot for all animals, especially dogs. Throughout her life, she always had many pets. Whether it was little hamsters or a huge German shepherd, she loved them all. She attended University of California, San Diego with a path leading towards psychology, however she could not get past her passion for animals and her desire to help them. After college, she wanted to find a career where she could combine her creativity with her love of animals. In 2012, she decided to pursue grooming. Her grooming career has taken her from big corporate salons to “mom and pop” shops to animal shelters. She currently has 3 rescued dogs, Marley (Chihuahua/Dachshund), Miyah (Dutch Shepherd mix) and Michelin (Chinese Shar Pei).

She makes every effort to ensure that all animals in her care have a stress-free grooming experience. To gain the trust of the pets as well as the pet parents, she takes care of every pet as if they were her own. She takes immense pride in the quality of her work. Being quite the perfectionist, she is constantly learning new techniques to ensure that the pets are not only comfortable but also healthy and looking beautiful.