Tony & Marion

The Beach life with these dog-loving newlyweds

By the Get Leashed Doggy Style team

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What do you do when you’re not really into pets, but you fall in love with someone that has a dog? Take a page out of Tony Chapman’s book: fall head-over-heels for the woman and the dog.

But how could you not fall in love with Zulu? The miniature schnauzer that Tony’s wife, Marion, has had for thirteen years has a smile that could win over even the most standoffish dog people. Just take a look at the grin she displays while riding contentedly in the back of this couple’s tandem bike; it’s obvious that this is a dog who makes an outing something more special.

We’ll leave it to Tony and Marion to tell you a bit more about how they’re seemingly able to live a Miami lifestyle in the heart of Toronto, their new marriage (congrats!), and all the things Zulu helps make more special.

Tell us about yourselves:

Marion: I have spent three decades working in the hospitality industry, first in South Africa, where I was born and for the last 27 years in Canada working for the Firkin Pubs. I am their Director of Operations responsible for how well our chain of 33 pubs run.  In any given day I could be working on training and development, new pub openings, or bar and menu development.

Tony: I have been an entrepreneur all of my life.  I founded and have successfully sold two advertising agencies and co-founded a research firm.  Today I spend my time working in television and radio as well as being a motivational speaker.  In the last two years, speaking has given me the opportunity to visit China, Brazil, Spain, England as well many parts of North America.

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A bit about your pet:

Marion:  Our dog’s name is Zulu.  She is a miniature schnauzer who recently celebrated her thirteenth birthday.   When I immigrated to Canada I brought two Yorkies; Gyzmo and Gaby with me.   When they passed it hurt more than I could ever imagine and I thought I would never get another dog.  That changed when I visited a breeder and saw Zulu for the first time. She was the runt of the litter but she had such a wonderful personality.  It was the best decision that I ever made.  She loves people and she has brought so much joy to this world.

What does your ideal weekend look like?

Tony:  Our ideal weekend is spent at home.  We are lucky to live in the Beach and in a house that faces Lake Ontario.  We love to walk, canoe, paddle board, entertain and take our tandem bike (with a basket for Zulu) out for rides.

Describe your personal style:

Marion:  My style would have to be called free spirit.  Flowing skirts and tops, funky pants and I only put on makeup if I have to.   Tony.  On stage or on television I love a great suit with an open collar shirt.  At home t-shirts and shorts.

What inspires you?

Marion:  I grew up in South Africa and was lucky enough to see what a single individual, Nelson Mandela, could do for a country.  I only wish they had let him out of prison twenty years earlier.

Tony:  I love reading about people who have made a difference, who have put a dent in the universe.  Inventors, scientists, capitalists.

How would you describe the look and feel of your home?

Marion: We renovated our house from the top down and opened it up to take full advantage of our amazing water views.  Our guiding theme was less is more.  Light wood and furniture, expansive artwork, and no knick-knacks.

A story about Zulu:

Marion: When Tony and I started dating I brought Zulu over for a sleepover.  She wanted nothing to do with him and she proceeded to plant herself across my body to ensure Tony didn’t.  Today you can’t separate those two.  He even makes her organic dog food.  I think she eats better than I do.