About Us

Gartner & Associates Animal Law is Canada’s leading animal law firm. Located in downtown Toronto, we deal exclusively with animal law matters and are dedicated to helping clients resolve animal disputes with our tailored mediation and litigation services.

With extensive and specialized knowledge and experience in animal law matters, our team understands your issues and concerns.

Our practice areas include pet custody disputes, dog breed discrimination/bite allegations, veterinary malpractice, condominium disputes involving pets, wills and estates matters for surviving pets, resolving pet insurance claims, and animal care related negligence claims.


Suzana Gartner

Suzana Gartner

B.A., J.D., LL.M (ADR), Firm Founder

Following graduation from law school, Suzana completed her Master of Laws degree in Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) at Osgoode Hall Law School, combining mediation methodology with the emerging field of animal law. Her LL.M. thesis focused on reducing euthanasia rates for homeless companion animals in shelters with a new animal welfare model, an Acceptable Companion Animal Philosophy (ACAP).

Suzana speaks frequently on animal law issues. She proposes ADR methods for the resolution of animal-related disputes. Suzana is a member of the Jackman Humanities Institute in Animal law at the University of Toronto. She serves on the Board of Advisors for Animal Justice Canada and is the Past-Chair of the Ontario Bar Association’s Animal law section.

Suzana launched the first law firm in Canada dedicated exclusively to animal law matters. Her legal practice focuses primarily on companion animal guardian’s legal concerns. She has successfully helped clients deal with alleged dog bite incidents, dog “breed” bans, dog and cat custody disputes between separating couples, condominium disputes involving pet (s), including pet limits, and many other animal-related disputes.

Students At Law

Maxine Jagdeo

Maxine Jagdeo

B.Comm, J.D. (CDN), J.D. (US) Fall Law Student 2017

Maxine is a recent graduate of the Dual Program at the University of Windsor and the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law. She developed her strength in oral advocacy while working at the 36th District Court in Detroit and through various moot competitions. She is excited to use this skill to speak on animal law issues.

Maxine has always had a passion for helping animals and hopes to dedicate her life to making a tangible difference in advancing the rights of farmed and companion animals. She is a vegan, making the welfare of animals a personal commitment. Maxine supports the work of local animal shelters through donations and is involved with the care and maintenance of a feral cat colony in Windsor, Ontario. She also has an adopted black cat.

David Samuels

David Samuels

Fall Law Student 2017

David comes to Gartner & Associates after receiving his law degree from the University of Exeter (LL.B.) in the United Kingdom. David also completed a BA in Law at Carleton University in Ottawa. While attending law school, David formed and managed an extracurricular peer group that actively administered voluntary research in the community and provided guidance to wrongfully evicted families. He gained legal experience while abroad through a two-year internship at Trowers and Hamlins, focusing on litigation, family and trust law.

David knew from an early age that animals would always be a part of his life. His passion has developed since he was a child, being raised around a wide range of pets. He trained his Bichon Frise to be a show dog who worked towards being a Canadian champion.  He currently owns a rescue dog, a Parson Russell Terrier, who required years of patience and understanding and has become well adjusted. He promotes the welfare of animals by donating to local animal shelters and supports the adoption process as he has adopted two cats.

In his spare time, David enjoys travelling, exercising, and playing tennis.

Christopher Clark

Christopher Clark

Law Student

Christopher Clark H.BA., M.A., B. Ed., J.D. (expected 2018) – Winter and Summer Law Student

Christopher is completing a placement with Gartner and Associates as part of the Integrated Practice Curriculum provided by Lakehead University’s Bora Laskin Faculty of Law in Thunder Bay which was founded on the principle of enabling new lawyers to enter the profession and serve underrepresented fields including: Aboriginal Peoples, the environment, and small-town communities.

He completed an Honours Undergraduate and Master of Arts Degree in History at McMaster University before completing a teaching degree with Brock University’s Faculty of Education. Lastly, he completed a human resources certificate through McMaster University’s Continuing Education Program.

Christopher received the Dean’s Honour Award – Second Place for completing the 2016/2017 academic year with the second highest cumulative average in his cohort.

Christopher hopes to bring a diverse experience to support the team at Gartner and Associates in their continual efforts to give a voice to animals and their guardians.

Firm Staff

Olena Stevenson

Olena Stevenson


Olena graduated from the University of Ottawa with a major in Accounting and earned her professional accounting designation as a Chartered Accountant. Olena is the firm accountant for Gartner & Associates and proud to be part of a team committed to giving a voice to animals in our society.

Olena also has her own bookkeeping and accounting firm OM Bookkeeper. Her firm focuses on providing bookkeeping to companies and non-profits working for good causes, specifically on animal welfare issues and vegan lifestyle.

Olena is very active with environmental and animal welfare causes. Olena dedicates her time volunteering for numerous organizations, such as: Toronto Bruce Trail Club, The Literacy Group, etc. She is founding a new charitable organization the Grand River Veg Association and working on Vegan Theatre project together with other animal lovers.

Jennifer Nation

Jennifer Nation

Legal Assistant

Jennifer graduated from the Paralegal Diploma Program at Capilano University, where she made the Dean’s List every semester. She then completed a practicum at Boughton Law Corporation, and was subsequently an integral part of the team that helped launch Breder Law, an animal law firm in Vancouver, BC. Today, Jennifer is very excited to join Gartner & Associates Animal Law, where she will help fight the injustices faced by animals and their guardians.

She always knew she wanted to work for animals. Prior to her legal studies, Jennifer worked as a veterinary assistant for eight years. She cared for sick animals, helped clients through difficult times, and took an active role in the day-to-day operations of the hospital. During that time, she obtained an Associate of Arts Degree from Langara College and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of British Columbia.

Jennifer volunteers remotely with the Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association, she enjoys a vegetarian transitioning to vegan lifestyle, and shares her home and heart with her three rescue animals. Jennifer is thrilled to dedicate her career to her longstanding passion for animal welfare.


Animal Law has many aspects. The links below lead to discussions of common issues and of the expertise Gartner & Associates can offer you if you are facing such issues.

Articles / Blogs

Here’s what we have been thinking about lately.