About Us

Susan Gibbons, Owner: Sara was my first dog. She was a beautiful malamute-shepherd mix that I adopted from the Humane Society when she was 8 weeks old. She saw me through a new job, a new marriage, the births of three children and all the ups and downs of starting a home and family. Her name is short for Serenity – she brought a peace, a joy and unconditional love to my life.  Sara passed away years ago, but she is always remembered and even though I have had other dogs in my life since Sara, I wanted to honor her memory by naming my business after her. I hope to share with your animal companions the peace, joy and unconditional love that Sara shared with me.

I will care for your friend and companion as I would care for my own. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and English. After college I went on to study animal communication and canine learning theories, I feel confident following the training protocols you have in place. Aside from dogs and cats I also have experience caring for birds, fish, ferrets, hamsters, frogs, lizards and guinea pigs. There is no animal I do not love and I will love yours, too.

July 1, Sara’s Legacy celebrates its ninth year of professional pet care, servicing the Traverse City area. I am very appreciative of all the support and grateful for all the friends made, both two-legged and four, and for my super team of caring helpers.

Jean Gibbons, a retired chemist, brings to the team a huge love of animals combined with a lifetime of experience caring for and sharing a home with numerous dogs and cats. “I generally make friends with animals easily,” Jean says.  The same last name is not a coincidence. “When I was considering who to bring on board to help out, I couldn’t think of a better person,” notes Susan. “I trust my mom with all my children, both the four-legged as well as the two-legged.”



KrisB_reducedKris Barrett has been a local veterinary technician for over 16 years. “I’ve lived in Traverse City most of my life. We always had multiple cats & dogs, a rabbit, fish and several pocket pets. I got my first dog, Murphy Brown, a Golden Retriever, as soon as I bought my first house. Clyde, my Chocolate Lab, came along not much later. They both lived to almost 15. Working with animals was most certainly my calling. I now have an Orange Pomeranian named Skuppy (for Scrappy Puppy) and Brody, a very young at heart Yellow Lab , a Torti cat named Cricket and an elderly pet Rat named Templeton. I’ve dealt with many heath issues with my own pets, from Epilepsy, Diabetes, Kidney Failure and Cancers. Taking care of animals has always been an honor for me and I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

Taryn Heaton  has a way with animals and years of experience as a volunteer at both the humane society and horse rescue. Taryn also has over ten years of experience in the health industry, working as a nurse assistant and case manager. With a caring spirit and empathetic, heart she has also volunteered at homeless shelters. Taryn has boundless energy and looks forward to sharing her conscientious care with your furry loved ones. Taryn swims competitively and has the energy to keep up with even our most exuberant friends!

scan0021 Char Slater , a resident of Traverse City for over 40 years, recently retired from her position as career advisor for a non-profit agency. She now looks forward to a new career of caring for others furry loved ones. Char grew up around animals but didn’t become a pet parent until the 1990s. Her first love was a black lab mix dog named Bernie. Then, she acquired a shepherd mix named Maggie (pictured). Bernie and Maggie were great siblings and wonderful companions, sharing lots of long hikes with Char on the VASA trails.

Although Char currently does not share her life with a furry friend, she frequently has the pleasure of caring for her family and friends’ dogs and cats when they travel. Char says, “I will care for your animals like they are my own – with lots of love and kindness.” Char has already proven herself to be an invaluable addition to the team. “Char brings such warmth to those she visits,” relates Susan, “and she is meticulous about their care.”

Jan Wiltse is a longJanWiltse-time dog lover, with an especially soft spot for senior dogs.  She has volunteered with dog rescue efforts on the local level for many years and has fostered and adopted many older and special needs dogs.  Jan recently retired from a career in public health and is now ready to devote more time to helping animals.  She works on administrative tasks and outreach efforts for Sara’s Legacy Pet Sitters and shares her home with four senior dogs.




Sara’s Legacy team members have experience with special needs pets; giving shots, medications, eye and ear drops plus. All team members have completed the Red Cross Pet First Aid course.

Call today and meet us during your initial complimentary visit 231-632-2877!

We look forward to caring for your furry

and feathered loved ones!

Traverse City, Michigan Pet Sitter – In home customized, professional, loving care for your four-legged family and friends.