When I was just nine years old, I joined a 4-H program and began training my first dog, Daisie. A more patient, giving, and wonderful first dog, I could never ask for! We had so many mishaps and adventures through our training journey. As the years progressed and I met, raised and trained more dogs, I learned everything that I could. I worked hard to fill up my toolbox of training techniques with such mentors as Betsy Atkinson (Hearthside Australian Shepherds), Tracy Sklenar (Leader of the Pack Agility Training), Carol Strong, and Mitch Stahl (Stahl Hunde Dog Training).
In 2005, I had the extreme pleasure and good fortune to meet Kayce Cover (www.synalia.com), the creator of Syn Alia Training Systems and a great friend. Since attending my first seminar with her at 17 and hosting her at our home, she has completely revolutionized the way that I train. While before I viewed training as a fun way to interact with my pet,now I view training as a mutually respectful, responsible, and beneficial interaction between animal and trainer.
I have been SATS certified (both in Bridge and Target training and Perception Modification) for close to 6 years, and was practicing for four more before that. I use these techniques to work with my dogs, client dogs, my horses, and my parrot. I have been training professionally since 2011, and I use these techniques to teach everything from tricks and obedience behaviors to helping animals solve anxiety and reactivity troubles. My goal for all training is to improve communication and connection between families and their pets.
For a more in-depth look at SATS and what it means for your dog, check out this post: What Is SATS?
I grew up in Central New York, and earned my Master’s Degree at Syracuse University in Inclusive Special Education: Severe and Multiple Disabilities in 2012. I moved to Texas just a few months later to be with my then-boyfriend (now husband!) in Dallas and began my first job as a Special Education teacher in a Life Skills classroom in Irving. Working with students with disabilities is a passion, and something that I enjoy and find deeply fulfilling. Though I moved to a new school district, I maintained my position as a Life Skills teacher, serving students with severe functional disabilities.
In 2014, my husband and I got married, and we moved into our current home with our four dogs, two cats, and my parrot. Our household is busy, and has gotten busier as we welcomed our beautiful daughter, Maggie, in July! But it is as warm and loving a household as I could hope for.
My passion for being outside has not dimmed at all as I’ve gotten older, and my three horses live on a ranch in Balch Springs. Jack, Dream, and Maxwell all have the benefit of roaming with a larger herd of horses, and we use a combination of SATS and Marijke de Jong’s Straightness Training to build our relationships and stay strong and connected.
Serving others has been a joy for me since I was young and in Girl Scouts and 4-H, and I am glad to be able to help families find peace and harmony in their lives through helping them connect and communicate with their dogs.