top of page

My Story

From rescue to empowering

While I was growing up my family always had dogs, and they had been a resuce dog of sorts as rescue centres weren't a big thing and most people advertised their dogs in the local newspaper shop.

275549233_10219770578084969_4139776085324780434_n.jpg

Our Story

Shandy, our mixed breed died on Christmas Day 1992

The following August I visited The National Canine Defence League (now Dogs Trust) looking for the first dog I would own as an adult.  It was there I started on what has become a long journey and my current career.

Cam came with problems, at around 6 months old he’d been found wandering the streets and had a leg problem. He’d had no training, didn’t know sit, how to walk on the lead or any of the things a dog needs to know to live in a family.  He was scared of everything. Most of all he had a big problem with men; aggressive behaviour was his way of keeping those he didn’t know at bay.  But underneath he was terrified.

 

I’d grew up in the Woodhouse era, choke chains and rolled up paper were the only ways I knew. But when you have a dog that screams in fear then runs and hides when you pick up a newspaper to read or a lead to go for a walk you need to look at alternatives.

 

Modern Force Free training was in its infancy and the local dog warden was offering classes using reward based training; she was studying and working with Robin Walker, John Fisher and Peter Neville.  This is how I discovered science based training.

 

I was able to book on straight away and joined in the new wave of training using groundbreaking teaching for both dogs and their owners as Karen Pryor was introducing Clicker Training to the dog world.  By the end of the 7 week course the training bug had bitten. I carried on to the next level and shortly after started to help run the lower level classes before taking responsibility for my own group of dogs and owners.  I also helped with some one to one aggression cases, with Kendal Shepherd and the dog warden, using myself and my dog as stooges.

 

I have attended many in person seminars, practical workshops and conferences and have the ISCP Advanced Diploma in Canine Behaviour (Degree level) as well as other qualifications in dog training and behaviour.   My dissertation was in the differentials in dog behaviour.

I am a member of various professional bodies, including INTODogs, ICAN (International Companion Animal Network), PPG (Pet Professional Guild) among others, as such I have to undergo a minimum of 40 hours a year of CPD and have montors such as Sarah Whitehead and Sarah Fisher.  I mentor peple wanting to become dog trainers or behaviourists, give talks, support unemployed people into employment and college students in their studies through work experience placements .

As a behaviourist I think that my strongest attribute lies in being able to look at things from the dog’s point of view and enabling guardians to understand why their dog may be behaving in a certain way that is not compatible with what they require from the dog and how to change the dog’s, and their own, behaviour to make life harmonious for the family.  I work on both vet and self referal basis.

I currently live with four Border Collies and have bred 2 litters.  My dogs are not just my companions but also work mates, they help with confidence giving for dogs who aren't sure, and with people who have dog phobia.   We also compete, having been to Crufts numerous times,  they also hold Kennel Club Good Citizen's certificates at various levels.

Meet The Dogs

Testimonials

  • We want to say a big thank you, Poppy is a different dog now. - Sue and Greg

  • Who knew something so simple could be so effective - John

  • Not judged for things we may have done that hadn't worked with Bailey but given great positive alternatives - Steve and Nat

  • Mental stimulation and calming techniques using ACE has made such a difference - Vicki

  • I don't know what we would do without you helping Dylan - Marrianne

  • So much contridiction online, but clear professional advice is worth it - Peter and Emma

  • Stanley loves his training - Sam

  • Buddy can't wait to get to day care and never wants to leave - Paul and Rachel

  • It was great to be able to let our Romanian Rescue dog off to play with Storm after her being so reactive that we couldn't even go out the door - Chris

  • So pleased to have found someone that understands Border Collies and helped us get Toby off to a great start - Ray and Anne

  • Faie helped give Mac the confidence he needed - Linda and John

  • Thank you for everything you do - Jean

  • No one else has been able to groom our dog - Joe and Mags

  • Day care, grooming and training, we get the whole package - Kay

  • Kind, knowlegeable, no gimmicks - Matt and Sue

  • Learnt what Alpha really means! Now we are no longer fighting to be top dog and have a calm instead of stressed house - Mike and Jane

  • Thank you for helping with the dogs and for being a great mentor, I have learnt so much - Abbie

  • I cried when I saw Dixie playing with another dog - Beth and Max

  • Sadie loves it here - Siobhan

  • Thank you for helping Stella settle I thought we were going to have to give her back - Eva

bottom of page