Our Companions Animal Rescue

Our Companions Animal Rescue is a Connecticut based organization that promises to always do the right thing for animals, regardless of the challenge or cost.

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Our Companions Staff


Karen Aseltine

Novice master chef: specializing in cuisine featuring the finest cat hairs

Karen Aseltine
Sanctuary Feline Behavior Manager and Care

In addition to providing daily loving care for the cats at the Sanctuary, Karen also helps promote our cats for adoption and organizes the medical records and animal care data for all the Sanctuary cats. Karen is a Certified Cat Behavior Counselor and serves as our resident “kitty psychologist”.

Best Things in Life: bicycles, scented candles, gummy bears, warm summer nights

Could Easily Live Without: snow days, paper cuts, family members who complain about my cooking

Jen Dalo

Organizer of Canine Treats and Toys

Jen Dalo
Canine Sanctuary Caregiver

In addition to providing nourishing food, yummy treats, exercise, playtime and lots of love to the dogs at the Sanctuary, Jen is also an expert cleaner and organizer. And she expects nothing less from everyone else. Laundry not put away? Nope, that’s got to change. Supplies not organized? No way, we need a system! When people compliment that the dog cottages are so organized and tidy, we have only Jen to thank for keeping us careless humans in line.

Best Things in Life: exploring the great outdoors with my wife and dogs, finding great used book stores, WoW

Could Easily Live Without: trollers

Caroline Gaetano
Happiest in the Woods-woman

Caroline Gaetano
Manager of Community Programs

When not in the woods, Caroline manages our Animal Helpline, rehoming cases, “Sterile Feral” TNR program, veterinary assistance programs and other community programs.

Best Things in Life: Fresh mountain air, hiking with dogs, my vacuum cleaner and chocolate

Could Easily Live Without: Glitter, bananas and snakes

Sara Geriak

Professional Cat Concierge


Sara Geriak
Feline Sanctuary Caregiver

Sara is especially well trained (by the cats, of course) to provide personalized loving care including special activities and meaningful routines for all cats at the Sanctuary.

Best Things in Life: My dog Sam, Autumn, books, music, strawberries

Could Easily Live Without: Spiders, and tuition expenses

Ariana Harris

Nature Enthusiast

Ariana Harris
Feline Sanctuary Caregiver

Ariana’s experience working with various species of animals (domestic and wild) has given her a true appreciation for the grace and absolute authority of the feline. In a very short time the Sanctuary cats have “broken her in” and she is now well trained to provide the highest quality care for the feline guests, who will tolerate nothing less.

Best Things in Life: outdoor adventures, animals of every kind, family, friends, and celebrations

Could Easily Live Without: TV, shopping, poison ivy, clowns, and balloons

Paul Johnson

Carrier of heavy things at the
Program Center

Paul Johnson
Office Manager

Paul is our “Point man, Go-to-guy, Mr. Get’er Done”. He organizes the office operations and makes sure that all business runs smoothly at Our Companions.

Best Things in Life: Classical and EDM music, craft beer

Could Easily Live Without: Sports on TV

Marie Joyner

Was definitely a dog in a past life

Marie Joyner
Canine Operations Director

Marie oversees “all things canine” at both the Ashford Sanctuary and our Valerie Friedman Program Center.

Best Things in Life: In the woods with the dogs, The Maine Cabin, Hound Hugs

Could Easily Live Without: Social Media

Susan B. Linker

Rampant Typo Maker, Daydreamer and the next Food Network Star

Susan B. Linker
Chief Executive Officer

Susan is responsible for the oversight of Our Companions Animal Rescue and meeting the organization’s financial and operational goals. Like all CEOs, Susan is the proud recipient of all the public adulation and complaints. Thankfully the awesome staff at OC makes her job very easy.

Best Things in Life: Soft fur, summer, Home

Could Easily Live Without: Country Music

Krystal Makowski

Famous Decorator for the Furry and Captain of Canine Cuteness.


Krystal Makowski
Canine Cottage & Sanctuary Facilities Manager

Krystal is the Manager of one of the canine cottages (Chelsea House). She also oversees the Sanctuary’s 43-acre campus and takes special care to create special artful touches to the Sanctuary’s facilities, both inside and out!

Best Things in Life: All things sparkly, Photography, Mac and Cheese, shopping

Could Easily Live Without: Hitting my funny bone -the irony is too much

Stephanie Montemerlo

Can solve anything with a spreadsheet and a cat in her lap.


Stephanie Montemerlo
Director of Programs

Stephanie is responsible for the oversight and development of all Our Companions' rescue, adoption and educational programs, yet still finds time to perfectly coordinate her purple and pink attire.

Best Things in Life: Home, pasta, good books, travelling

Could Easily Live Without: Snow and cold weather

Lindsey Pellino

Professional Cat Lady


Lindsey Pellino
Sanctuary Feline Care and Volunteer Manager

Lindsey takes care of the cats at Sebastian House, and manages, trains, and oversees the volunteers who give all our feline guests much needed TLC.

Best Things in Life: bike rides, hot sauce, lipstick, reading on a hammock

Could Easily Live Without: mosquitos, cold weather, my own clumsiness

Henry Petrofsky

Internal Controls Freak


Henry Petrofsky
Director of Finance

Henry is our official “Bean Counter” who meticulously oversees the daily, monthly, yearly and long-term financial operations of Our Companions.

Best Things in Life: My wife, cats, my iPad and a good cigar

Could Easily Live Without: Network news

Jon Phillips

Dog Butler/Chauffeur

Jon Phillips
Canine Cottage & Sanctuary Volunteer Manager

Jon is the manager of the Sanctuary canine cottage, Henree House, and is in charge of scheduling, training and managing the awesome volunteers who provide daily care, enrichment and exercise for the dogs at the Sanctuary.

Best Things in Life: Watching TV on the couch with my wife and assorted furballs, all things musical

Could Easily Live Without: Reality TV

Megan Rock

OC’s Token Extrovert

Megan Rock
Adoption Program Manager

Megan oversees the Adoption Program at Our Companions. She spends her days getting super excited about fun marketing campaigns, successful adoptions, and pretty much everything else in life, and holds down the fort as the token extrovert at the Program Center.

Best Things in Life: Good company, good food, pit bulls, tiny humans, and my dog, Buster

Could Easily Live Without: Needles, mayonnaise, and mosquitos

Jennifer Strong

Dog’s Best Friend

Jennifer Strong
Sanctuary Canine Caregiver

Jennifer works at the Sanctuary’s Canine Cottages providing loving care, exercise, nutritious food and downright spoiling every single dog at the sanctuary. She is also our unofficial Canine Defense Legal Counsel advocating and defending all dog behavior (naughty and nice). Torn up doggie bed? Your fault not Buster's- case closed!

Best Things in Life: Disney World, Halloween, The Drive-in Movies (yes they still exist!), Dogs (of course), Spending time with my husband and our fur kids, Christmas movies!

Could Easily Live Without: Snakes and Spiders