I’ve always had a keen interest in dogs and have been training dogs for over 20 years. I started dog training using what is called traditional methods which involved using correction and choke chains as that is what I was taught by the experts at the time. Although it worked I was always uncomfortable with this approach and sought to learn alternative ways to train and this is what set me on my journey. My journey taught me that dogs can be trained effectively and to very high standards using kindness and motivation and by building the right relationship of trust and mutual respect. Learning should be fun for both humans and dogs
12 years ago after completing a course in running training classes I set up my own pet dog and puppy classes at the local church hall as a hobby using a positive approach. These classes grew into two night and six classes. Four years later after completing the COAPE Diploma in the Practical Aspects of Companion Animal Behaviour and Training and an Advanced Award in Practical Behaviour Therapy I took voluntary redundancy in my day job as a Business Improvement Analyst and started dog training and walking full time.
I signed up to the Foundation degree in Canine Behaviour and Training with Hull University at Bishop Burton Agricultural College part time and completed a total of 5 years study, topping up with a BSc (Hons) in Canine Behaviour and Training and graduating in 2012
During this time I found my own venue which started as WaggaWuffins K9 Activity Centre and is now WaggaWuffins Canine College. The business grew at a fast rate and at one time I had 4 members of staff, loads of dog walking and was running 18 training classes per week. Sitting back and looking at it, although the business was doing great, my passion is helping people and training dogs and I had ended up spending most of my time running the business and managing staff. So I began to down size and get back to what I love most, helping people train their pet dogs and understand them better.
I continued to study and spent a couple of years learning with Learning About Dogs, completing my CAP (Clicker Trainers Competency Assessment Program) 1 and 2 with distinction, attended a teachers week and the training to become a CAP Assessor.
After Graduating from Bishop Burton with my Honors Degree I had a call from the college saying I’d had the highest grade given for the practical instructing module ever given out and would I be interested in teaching their Foundation Degree Organising Classes and Instructing Module. I did this for 2 years. I was also approached by COAPE who were developing a Level 5 Ofqual Regulated Diploma add on to their first year and I taught the practical modules for 3 years for them .
Understanding the importance of teaching people in my role I went to study a City and Guilds Award in Education and Training and have recently learnt about Emotional Intelligence Coaching and Mindful Coaching
I have written articles for Dogs Today magazine and have provided dogs for TV Commercials, Advertising and Film, Management Conferences and Demonstrations.
I have lectured for the Kennel Club on two occasions one at a KCAI local event and also at Crufts 2015 in the KCAI Lecture Theatre, then in March 2016 at Crufts I was awarded the Kennel Club Accredited Instructor Scheme Dog Trainer of the Year 2015, where i was nominated by my lovely clients to the final and then voted the winner by the public
I am a member of The Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT UK) Membership no. 1058 and a Registered Animal Trainer with the Animal Behaviour and Training Council (ABTC)
I currently share my home with five dogs, a 12 year old polish lowland sheepdog Snoopy a retired show Champion, and four working cocker spaniels, Pickles, The Stig, Mia and Drift two of which I bred myself, I have previously owned Leonbergers for 20 years so have plenty of experience with different breeds and living with a multi dog household.
I provide a unique service where I give you the guidance and support to understand and train your dog better, while having lots of fun using a kind and compassionate approach. I can help you build a strong and rewarding relationship with your pet dog, helping you create an obedient and well behaved family pet that you can be proud of ……..
When I’m not training dogs I like playing in the mud in my Defender……………………….