I am 32 years old and am located in Emley Village in West Yorkshire. I have been working with dogs for 16 years. I offer a consultancy service in the client’s home as a dog behaviour practitioner and owner trainer. I also offer a ‘boot camp’ style boarding service in my own home with my own sociable pack of dogs. In addition to this I offer socialisation sessions for established clients and run a small-scale rescue for dogs that would traditionally be turned away by mainstream rescue organisations due to behaviour issues.
I have worked in the animal welfare sector as a fosterer, home checker, transporter, fund-raiser and dog assessor. I also worked with a Husky rescue association for many years. Through my dog behaviour consultancy I now try to assist owners in keeping their dogs in the home through the education of owners and the rehabilitation of dogs – thus helping to avoid the dogs being relinquished to welfare in the first instance. This is what I love to do. I also offer assistance to established rescues and registered charities.
I do not have a ‘blueprint’ approach towards behaviour modification, every single case is unique and I try to treat them as such. I do subscribe to theories of pack structure and dominance/submission, but also appreciate that there is a huge difference between the importance this holds for different breeds and individuals. I am neither bound to the trust destroying methods employed in the past, or the ‘reward only’ appeasement society theorists of the moment. I try very hard to take a balanced view that adheres to neither extreme, and is purely dependant upon the individual dog and his or her circumstances. I feel an open mind is essential for a holistic view.
I use and teach both operant and respondent techniques along with applying a fundamental understanding of dog behaviour in order to best serve the dog in regaining a balanced and happy life and to remove any unwanted behaviour. I also try to inform the owner as much as I possibly can in the area of dog psychology in order to help prevent future issues arising.
I have had by far the most experience with giant breeds and sled dogs but have worked with many, many breeds of dog over the years – of all shapes and sizes. I have had a lot of experience with the various forms of aggression and have a special interest in PTSD in dogs and it’s treatment through behaviour modification.
I have a diploma in dog behaviour from the British College of Canine Studies and am a volunteer for training courses with SARDA (search and Rescue).