When and how did you got into dog training?
I got my first puppy when I was 8 years old which I took to training classes and won Best Young Handler for Two consecutive years. I had no idea that there were other disciplines you could enjoy with your dog until I took on my first rescue dog (a 13 year old Labrador that we took on when we bought our house as his owners were emigrating to America) of course there were many activities that I could not take part in with him due to his age but he taught me that old dogs can learn new tricks.
What do you like the most about dog training?
The most satisfying thing to me about dog training is seeing dog and handler relationships develop. Encouraging handlers to enjoy their dogs and see them as individuals with different needs and abilities and be able to bring out the best in them is what I love.
How long have you been part of the KCAI scheme?
I have been part of the KCAI scheme since 2013 and this year have been Accredited in Heelwork to Music at Advanced level.
Why are you a member of the KCAI Scheme?
I joined the KCAI Scheme because I think there should be a structure for people to be able to develop their skills before becoming dog trainers. I like what the scheme stands for and although I have found my journey to Accreditation a tough one it was one well worth pursuing and has taught me so much.
What would you say your biggest achievements in your career so far have been?
My biggest achievements so far would be:
Getting to the semi-finals of Crufts 3 times in Heelwork to Music with 2 different breeds of dogs.
Obtaining Gold Level of KC Good citizens with 4 dogs (3 different breeds).
Being part of one of the Obreedience teams at Crufts in 2015.
Qualifying for the National Obedience finals in 2016.
Training 2 other people to get to the semi-finals in Heelwork to Music, one of them went on to compete at Crufts in 2016.
Any work that you do with or for dogs, in addition to dog training instructing?
For the last 2 years I have helped out at my vet’s puppy parties, talking to new owners about their new puppy and advising them about the Kennel Club and other activities and training that they could take part in. I do fundraising events through my club for dog charities each year and donate annually to Dogs Trust, Cinnamon Trust, Greyhound Rescue, RSPCA and Battersea. I also do displays with my dogs at local schools and Nursing Homes and have a team of people that I have trained who do public displays with me at larger dog events.
Do you own a dog yourself and if so its name/breed?
I currently own three dogs, Mylo a 13 year old Labrador, Jodi a 10 year old rescue collie and Troy a 4 year old Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever.