Karen has an extensive education in behaviour modification and learning theory, as well as a lifelong experience working with animals which she applies in her training methods. Karen studied Psychology at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo and has obtained numerous dog training certifications including Certified Master Trainer and Canadian Canine Trainer. Raised on a hobby farm outside of Bayfield, with both parents as veterinarians, Karen was able to interact with a wide variety of animals from a very early age which led to her passion for working with animals. She worked as a dog trainer at Clinton Veterinary Services and Petcetera in Waterloo, as well as private in-home training. She has worked as a dog walker in Waterloo for the past 3 years. Karen was a puppy raiser for National Service Dogs and has given demonstrations in dog training and agility at the Betty Cardno Centre and the Scarecrow Festival in Clinton. Karen believes you must understand how dogs think and learn, and see things from the dog's point of view in order to train them effectively. By teaching owners how to communicate with their dog in a clear and consistent manner, she can set them up for success. Karen uses positive behaviour modification techniques which use rewards and reinforcement to increase desired behaviours rather than punishing bad behaviours.
In order to keep current on new training techniques Karen attends a wide variety of professional education conferences and seminars throughout North America. She is committed to making a positive difference in the daily lives of dogs and their owners, helping them to build a strong relationship based on trust, love and respect. Karen will show owners how to use what their dog values in life (food, treats, toys, attention, etc) to gain respect and trust as their leader. Karen offers a variety of positive learning experiences through group lessons, private lessons, home sessions, seminars, play groups and more to provide flexible, customized and innovative training solutions for people and their pets that best fit their individual schedules and learning style.
Instructor Bonnie Hirst
Bonnie is now the puppy/dog trainer for our kennel. She has certificates in puppy training, aggression issues, recalls, loose and canine first aide as well as extensive experience training her own dogs as good family members as well as agility.