This is what I've been doing to keep improving my ability to give you the best possible information on training your pets.


* February 2, 2013 - attended ORCA's 5th annual Art and Science of Animal Training Conference at the University of North Texas.

* October 29 -December 17, 2012 - attended online seminar by Dr. Debra Horwitz - "Introduction to Canine Aggression."

* September 2010 - Attended Southwest Veterinary Symposium seminars by Julie Shaw on Behavior Modification.

* Summer 2010 - Read The Dog Whisperer by Paul Owens, Help for Your Fearful Dog by Nicole Wilde, and Chase! Managing Your Dog's Predatory Instincts by Clarissa von Reinhardt.

* April 2010 - Took Basic Obedience class with Pecos at Happy Hounds Training. Even trainers need to take their dogs to class.

* Spring & Summer 2009 - Read Emma Parson's Click to Calm, Temple Grandin's Animals Make Us Human, and Karen Pryor's Reaching the Animal Mind. Check out my recommended reading section for some great books on training and animal behavior.

* July 2009 - attended online seminar by Dr. Debra Horwitz - "Stress and Anxiety Induced Behavior Issues in Cats."

* January 2009 - attended ClickerExpo in Austin, Tx

* Mid January - February 2008 - taught online clicker seminar for Musical Dog Sports Association

* January 26 & 27, 2008 - attended Advanced clicker seminar by Kay Laurence in Sugarland, Tx

* Fall 2007 - Took an advanced Freestyle class with Emily Pyle

* September 2006 - attended Southwest Veterinary Symposium behavior seminars by Dr. Lore Haug

* September 2004 - attended Southwest Veterinary Symposium behavior seminars by Dr. Victoria Voith

* 2004 - began teaching my own classes

* February 2003 - attended clicker seminar by Kay Laurence

* December 2002 - completed Novartis 'Introduction to Pet Behavioral Therapy' training module

* May 11, 2002 - attended Aggression Seminar by Dr. Lore Haug in Houston, Tx

* 2001 took first clicker based obedience class and began assisting Barbara West's classes

In 1996 I took my first 'traditionally-based' obedience class with my first dog, Dreamer. She already knew how to sit, I wanted to learn how to teach her to do all the other basic stuff. All I really learned was how to 'make' a dog do something... some of the time.

In 1998, I was introduced to Barbara West and decided to take one of her obedience classes to 'fix' some of the things I didn't like about Dreamer's behavior or lack thereof. At the time, Barb was not using the clicker, but she was using positive, humane reinforcement and learning theory to teach 'us' how to train our dogs. I learned so much in that first class, but the biggest thing was how good I felt about not 'forcing' my dog to do something. Dreamer was doing the commands because she knew that doing so would get her what she wanted, whether it was food, praise, petting, or a game.

At the end of that class, Barb introduced me to Flyball and I soon took a Flyball class she and one of the local teams were holding. I was hooked.

Later, Barb would also introduce me to Freestyle and Carolyn Scott and her boy, Rookie. Once again, I was caught - hook, line and sinker. Putting cute dog tricks to music... dancing with your dog. If you've never seen Carolyn and Rookie dance, check out this link.

Anyway, by this point dog behavior was starting to fascinate me and it still does. I have to credit Barb for getting me started and starting me down the right path. I sincerely hope to pass the joy of working with your pet to my students as Barb did with me.