The dog world was not always the world that I planned on being in... but once I was in it, there was no leaving!
When I tell you that I have been in your shoes, I am not kidding. I began my journey with Maizey, the dog that started me down a path that I would never forget. I anticipated that raising her from a puppy would mean that she was perfect, and that we would live happily ever after together. WRONG! She challenged my lack of leadership, took advantage of me every chance that she got, and made me question my decision to owning a dog. I sought out training company after training company to help me with her, all teaching me things along the way.
We eventually found Dharma Dog Training, where my love for dog training and behavior really took hold. I went on to complete the Life Changing Dog Training Apprentice Program in 2017 and 2018, and came on as a Head Trainer with Dharma Dog Training until May 2019. During this time, I trained dogs and their people ranging in behavior from basic to serious. I attended the Pack to Basics Socialization Workshop with Chad Mackin and a Buck Brannaman Horse Clinic.
I began following every trainer that I could learn from, distinguished what I liked and found value in, and created my own training program. This was all in conjunction with opening my other business, RAWfitness LLC with a colleague, to meet every pup's exercise need. I have been blessed to find very amazing mentors, even getting to travel to TN to shadow Robyn Berryman Owens with Maizey. She reaffirmed my belief in play as a training tool, taught me about bringing out the best in the dog with E Collar work, and further honed in on my foundational skills. I am currently completing the online workshop of Training Between the Ears, a renowned workshop focusing on dogs' ability to learn and process, and how we can effectively communicate the information that we have for them.
I now live with Maizey, Kota, and Huckleberry with balance, peace, and a whole lot of fun. My dogs live their very best lives- getting to be dogs, but also meeting my needs in the human world. All three provided me with lessons learned that I will forever be grateful for. No pack is perfect, but I like to think that the are perfect for me!
To find the happiest and healthiest version of your dog, you must take a holistic approach.
A holistic approach in dog training means that there is a bigger picture than just simple training exercises. Training exercises are great and I utilize them to their fullest, but focusing solely on those exercises will not create the dog that you have always dreamed off. They way in which you live with your dog will ultimately be the best tool that I could give you.
I believe in proper exercise, nutrition, communication, and embracing the dog for exactly what they are: dogs. I will never suppress the dog's innate needs as a social, pack driven creature. I choose to harness the dog's drive, put it towards something valuable, and teach them how to turn the switch from on to off without conflict. Every step of the way, you will be learning how to help your dog truly thrive in the human world.
We have chosen to live with canine apex predators. We must remember that their needs are that of predators, not humans. Dogs that are not provided with proper structure, boundaries, leadership, exercise, nutrition, and guidance are left to their own devices, which often creates conflict between human and dog. When you understand your dog's needs and meet them, there is no longer need for conflict.
My goal as a dog trainer is that you and your dog are able to live peaceful, joyous, full of adventure lives together. Training with this mindset and working together as a team, we are able to bring the very best out of your dog in a safe and healthy way. Creating a stable lifestyle complete with everything from structure to leadership to valuable play will be the difference between a chaotic pack and a peaceful pack. I do not limit myself to any method, tool, or process. Every dog is different, and while we can say that there is a general rule for dogs, different methods can prove to be differently valuable to each dog.
Let myself and my pack of pups help you find your dog's best life!