It takes good leadership to make Just For Cats Pet Sitting successful, and to ensure that our sitters give your kitty the TLC she needs and deserves!
Rita has always been drawn to animals, cats in particular. And they have always been drawn to her. She possesses a unique ability to communicate with and understand the tender nature of cats. Rita has been a cat communicator since she was a child, and she now shares her home with cats of all ages and temperaments.
“I never met a cat I couldn’t help,” says Rita. “I understand cats and their subtle ways of letting us know what they want, and it’s become my mission to help cat owners understand and communicate better with their felines.”
Rita’s “cat magic” comes from her over 30 years of experience as a cat owner and cat rescue worker. Understanding cats and their behaviors is a natural ability for Rita, and she considers it her “calling” in life. Her Feline Behavior Counseling services help people better understand their cat companions and find solutions to issues that might otherwise cause a cat to be surrendered to a rescue or shelter. Rita is also a member of the Animal Behavior Society, and the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC), as well as the Cat Writers Association.
Rita currently writes a cat behavior help and advice column called “A New Cattitude,” which is featured in every issue of Catster, previously known as Cat Fancy. She also writes regularly for such respected websites as Chewy.com, Pet MD, and Pet Central.
In addition, Rita is also contributing cat behaviorist for Petcha.com, appearing in Cat Behavior Videos, as well as authoring many articles about cat care. Rita has been interviewed for and quoted in Cat Fancy, as well as in the CATS USA ANNUAL, and KITTENS USA. She has also been a contributor to websites such as Pet360, Catster.com, Vocativ, Mental Floss, and PetSittingOlogy, to name a few. Rita has also been seen on Inside Edition, as their Cat Behaviorist for news stories such as Man Held Captive By Nasty Cat.
A native of Buffalo, New York, Rita lived in the Carolina’s for much of her adult life before spending ten years living in Los Angeles. She enjoyed a successful 22-year career in the computer technology field before dedicating herself full-time to cats and their well being. Rita decided to follow her heart and turn her love for and understanding of cats into a thriving cat sitting and behavior counseling service. She and her staff of dedicated and experienced cat care givers have become quite well known in Los Angeles for their love, patience, and understanding of cat persona, easing the minds of traveling kitty parents.
Rita has now returned to Charlotte, NC as her main place of residence in order to be closer to her family. She has opened a new branch of Just For Cats Pet Sitting there, bring her unique pet sitting vision to the east coast. Rita returns to Los Angeles several times a year to meet with the the LA staff, and catch up with friends.
From 2005 until 2008, Rita was heard live weekly as an on-air personality and Associate Producer of the “Lighten Up with Richard Simmons” show, heard exclusively on Sirius Satellite radio station Stars 102. You can also see her in Richard’s “Party Off the Pounds” workout DVD, and his “Love Yourself and Win” DVD, which she also Associate Produced. You can also see Rita in Richard Simmons’ new video series entitled Project Hope.
Pet love runs deep in Rita’s family. Her mother, Mary Reimers, is founder and president of The Humane Society of Lancaster, South Carolina, where Rita is a board member. Rita’s long-held dream of starting her Senior Cat Sanctuary is finally coming true. As a special project under The Humane Society of Lancaster SC, The Carolina Senior Cat Haven is in the process of being formed. More details to follow as they become available!
Rita is Owner and CEO of Just For Cats Pet Sitting, with locations in Beverly Hills, CA and Charlotte, NC. She also offers Feline Behavior Counseling and writes a Cat Behavior Blog at her website RitaReimers.com.
Brian grew up in the country, working on neighboring farms with cows and sheep. He had rabbits and raised a pig for 4H club. They had dogs in the house as he was growing up, and when he moved out, he adopted a ferret and an iguana. Although they had a few barn cats on the farm, they never had kitties in the house.
Years later, he had children who were begging for a kitty. When one of his daughters volunteered at FFRC, a kitty rescue, it wasn’t long before she wore him down and Subra came home. Subra needed a friend and was joined by Baaka and then Latte was rescued. One day, Brian asked why their three kitties were all females and decided they needed a male, and Brian went to the rescue to find a male to join the clan, which is how Warren joined the family! Today they have six kitties and one dog, and Brian is definitely a “kitty guy”. You can often find him with a kitty in his lap as he has learned the special joy that kitties bring to your life!
Brian is bringing over 20 years of management skills and 12 years in the banking industry to Just For Cats. He is combing his financial skills, his management skills and love for kitties, to help Just for Cats continue to run smoothly and happily to benefit our amazing clients and our awesome kitty care specialists!
Linda loves all animals but grew up with dogs as her mother is allergic to cats. Her Dad, who never had a kitty, thought he “didn’t like cats”. When Linda was a little girl she tried to sneak a kitten in, believing she could hide it in her closet but her Mom found it and she had to return it. (Note: Her parents have a kitty now which her father adores and allergy pills allow her Mom to snuggle happily!)
Linda and her husband Brian live in Ohio and have five children. In 2010, Linda’s daughter wanted to volunteer at a cat rescue and because she was too young to do it alone, Linda accompanied her. They fell in love with a kitty, of course and Brian finally gave in and said they would adopt Subra (in the picture with Linda). A few weeks later, it was decided they would adopt Bakka, to keep Subra company. After hearing about an older cat who had to be returned to the rescue, Latte was adopted (also in the picture), and because they couldn’t have an odd number, they rescued Warren next. None of them seems to remember what prompted Gallway’s rescue, but their son had only one request for his birthday, to rescue Drake, who was his 10th birthday present, bringing them to a total of six cats! (Sadly, after a year and a half, they tragically lost Drake, but he left an impression in their lives that will never be forgotten!)
Linda is excited to be working as Client and Membership Services Director here! She will be working with emails, phone calls and with the website. She will have the honor of working with all of the people who, like her, love kitties! She will get to help them get their pet sits set up and talk to them about their kitty needs. She will be a part of watching the website grow and make lots of friends with other kitty lovers, which she is very excited about!
Before coming to work here, Linda worked for 17 years for Richard Simmons, which is how she met Rita. Linda worked as Richard’s customer service manager on his website, working with the people who visited, putting up content and participating in chats. Health and working with people was a passion and she enjoyed the sense of family that was built by a community of people with a common interest. That is exactly what drew her here! She is excited to join with others who love kitties to build a community of friends and family of feline fanatics; to share our ideas, our thoughts, and just our love of those crazy cats who have taken over our hearts!
Nikki’s love of kitties became obvious at a very young age. When she was 2 years old, she fell in love with a stray cat and named him Boo Boo because of a wound on his rear. She would hold her finger out and the cat would follow her around. Her parents ended up taking the cat in because of Nikki’s instant love for him. They soon found that Nikki was a magnet for any neighborhood stray and she could get them to come out of hiding when no one when else could.
When she grew up and moved out of the house she had only one requirement of her first apartment; that it was cat friendly. Her first stop after leaving the first month’s rent was to the animal shelter where she made her very first rescue, Tiger, who she still has, 10 years later, along with another kitty she rescued a few years later from another kitty rescue.
Nikki is very excited to be working for Just For Cats, helping to connect other kitty parents with the purrfect kitty care specialists so they can enjoy their time away, knowing we will care for their fur babies and love them while they are away.
Sebastian has loved cats from a young age. He began feeding stray cats everywhere he went from Chicago to Mexico and even in Spain. He adopted a kitty of his own when he lived in Indiana. His kitty, Mimi, always came to bed with him when he would say “A la Mimi,” which is bed time in Spanish slang.
He has always loved cats and became cat-dad to two kitties when he got married. Sebastian and his wife are now looking to adopt a 3rd. He calls Dinia his daughter, and almost overnight they began cuddling together; she follows him everywhere when he is getting ready for his day.
Sebastian is also fluent in Spanish and speaks a bit of Italian as well.
Charlotte loves cats so much she’ll even stop to “pet” a street art image of a cat (see photo)! “Kitting” aside, Charlotte’s first memories involve befriending and rescuing animals, especially Wooja: a calico who lived to be an amazing 27 human years old! In her last year, Wooja needed regular meds and subcutaneous fluids, so Charlotte began working from home in order to see Wooja through her journey over the Rainbow Bridge. Charlotte now lives with Keaton, a scruffy terrier she rescued in 2007. He looks like Stripe from the movie Gremlins, and she’s sure someone fed him after midnight!
Animals and Art are Charlotte’s two passions as she is also a creative copywriter and represented screenwriter. Through the power of storytelling, Charlotte raised over $18,000 to save a family of feral cats and kittens and paid off their lifetime care at a 12-acre, no-kill, and free-roam sanctuary.
Cats have specific dietary needs (taurine in particular), and Charlotte will happily and conscientiously follow your feeding instructions for your BFF. As for herself, Charlotte’s been vegan for 10 years after being vegetarian for decades and believes in “voting with your dollars three meals a day.”
Charlotte is excellent and intuitive with all types of cats and kittens — even those cranky seniors who sometimes take a swipe and prowl the halls meowling like a monarch gone mad. (Been there!) Charlotte knows how hard it is to be away from your fur babies and wants to take the fear, anxiety, and “What ifs?” out of your trip away from your cat-shaped heart. Charlotte can’t wait to take your reservations, so we can come over and spoil your fur babies! Paws up!
Elijah’s first cat was SPUTNIK, the family cat when he was a youngster growing up in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. He says don’t ask him how Sputnik ended up with the same name as a Russian satellite but that was her name! In this photo, Elijah is on the set of “This is LA” holding little Pixel, a sweet 8-week-old kitten who belongs to two of our sitters, Lilian and Johnny.
Elijah is the newest member of our team and even though he doesn’t own a cat now, he’s been a friend of cats for years. He asks that you don’t judge him for being more of a dog guy, he’s owned two chocolate Labrador Retrievers in his life, KoKo and Hershey. Sadly, Hershey, his second chocolate Lab had to be put down, after 12 happy years as Elijah’s best friend, just a week before Christmas in 2015.
Elijah’s very excited to be joining our team, and admits that before this experience is all over, we may very well end up turning him into a cat guy. In fact, he has several friends who loves cats as much he loved Koko & Hershey. He promises to introduce us to Oliver, the friendly feline who belongs to one of his best friends in Hattiesburg. Elijah admits it’s more like his friend belongs to Oliver. (We know what he means, right?) Elijah has friends who own both cats and dogs. He admits to always making friends with the dogs first; he sees cats as a challenge. They probably know he’s been more of a dog person most of his life but Elijah, animal-lover that he is, usually ends up having those kitties rubbing their sides along his legs soon enough. (Hey, Elijah…cats are smart! They want to make sure you’re one of the good guys!)
By the way, Elijah has an interesting history all his own. He won’t tell you know old he is (just yet anyway) but in his young adult life, Elijah once weighed 484 pounds. People are always amazed at how much weight he’s lost but Elijah likes to stop them before they start talking about how MUCH weight he’s lost. According to Elijah, that’s not the story. He insists, the real story is not that he lost nearly 300 pounds BUT…that he lost that much weight and has KEPT IT OFF for over 35 years. You’ll get to meet him soon in our chats…about CATS. We’re sure to end up having some interesting conversations about our four-legged family members, the ones that PURR and maybe even the ones that BARK, too! Some of you may be happy enough to have both as members of your own family.
Interestingly, Elijah, Rita, and Linda have all known each other for many years. We’re thrilled this family of friends has come together to make our experience here at Just For Cats and The New Cattitude Club on ritareimers.com an exciting one!
Sounds like, well…the PURR-fect combination!