about us

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Barbara is the founder of the company. She grew up in New Jersey where she raised 6 dogs of various breeds. Her family instilled in her the unique place in a family that pets have and she has continued to foster that belief through today. Barbara worked for years as a Business Systems Analyst in the financial industry of New York City but she decided to open this business in order to put her love of animals to work. 

Barbara has been active as a volunteer with local non-profit pet adoption groups here in Jacksonville as well as acting as a foster parent for many years. She has also been instrumental in finding homes for many unwanted or lost pets by utilizing her substantial pet industry contacts.  



Matt is Barbara's husband and the co-owner of the company. He also was born and raised in New Jersey where the family home always had at least two dogs residing within. Pets were always viewed as members of the family and Matt was regularly called upon to care for the  pets while the rest of the family members were away.

Matt worked as a Call Center and Business Processes Manager in the NYC metro area for years but gladly jumped on board with Barbara in this venture due to his undying love of animals.

Matt is the member of the team who conducts the Initial Client Consultations along with providing superior care for our clients' pets. He is adept at providing subcutaneous insulin injections for diabetic pets.


Customer Reviews

“I’m not sure I have enough words to describe the positive experience we’ve had in this our first (but certainly not last) use of Matt & Barb in their pet sitting service. From taking out the trash to bringing in the mail, to excellent communication, to everything being neat and orderly with the critters when we came home, it was a 100% positive experience. The cats were the least traumatized I’ve ever seen them after we’ve been gone (leaving them has always been hard on them) and by morning everything had returned to normal with their craziness. Thanks again for making this part of going away so easy. Next time I will rest much, much easier knowing I’ve left the boys in such loving and capable hands. - Sher from Intracoastal West” — Facebook

“A Friend in the Woods has been taking care of my dogs for many years. They are very trustworthy and responsive to any needs I may have regarding my dog. Most importantly, they truly love their client pets and the pets love them. I wouldn’t trust anyone else to care for my furry family. They have always loved my dogs like they were their own! - Deb from Jacksonville Beach” — Angie's List

“Matt and Barb who run and own this company - are amazing people and stewards of animal well being. I have used them for about a decade and they have never let me down. They truly love my pets like their own. They have a great attention to detail and they will call you if you don’t let them know you are home. They care that much about your pets and their company’s reputation. I wish every service I use was run like theirs. - John from Atlantic Beach” — Angie's List

“I recently used this sitter service and was sooooo happy with the results. I had recently rescued two kittens who had been ill for the preceding two months prior to my vacation, have an elderly cat with renal failure on daily blood pressure medication, and one of my remaining two additional cats had a complete urethral obstruction and was hospitalized the morning of our departure to Europe for 2.5 weeks. Matt was so great and upon my return all of my cats were happy and healthy. Matt even facilitated contact with my family regarding an A/C issue that arose during our absence. I can rest assured that during any future away time from home my cats will be in good hands. This is such a relief and allows me to enjoy my time away. Thanks. - Debbie from Jacksonville Beach” — Google Reviews


Check out more reviews on Facebook, Angie's List and Google: