The reason I have a list of preferred trainers is that there are, sadly, still some dog trainers who persist in using techniques that involve the use of inhumane tools and techniques. These trainers will never be recommended by me.
As a qualified Behaviour Veterinarian I have a strong ethical commitment to not make any patient worse. It is irresponsible to advise treatments that involve punishment when it has been clearly shown that punishment can make these animals worse and endanger their caregivers.
The following is a list of trainers who I work closely with and I can vouch for their knowledge, care and commitment. All the trainers below employ positive reinforcement and see the value in working closely with a behaviour veterinarian. Together the best possible outcome can be achieved.
Colleen O’dea – Manners’n More
Here’s what Colleen says…
Sonya Bevan – Dog Charming
Here’s what Sonya says…
“Working with fearful, anxious and aggressive dogs is my passion. These dogs respond really well to behaviour modification. They often need pharmaceutical assistance in order to get the best out of a behaviour modification plan. That’s why forming a working alliance with a vet behaviour consultant who specializes in animal behaviour and pharmaceutical intervention was a total windfall. It’s not only Dr Nicole’s expertise in animal behaviour that makes her a Godsend to animals with behaviour issues, it’s her empathy to animals in need as well as to their care-givers. She is committed to providing a science based, ethical and compassionate service. Yet it doesn’t stop there. She is truly interested in the wellbeing of her clients and encourages clients to remain in contact with regular updates. Working with Dr Nicole has been a collaboration resulting in truly gratifying results for our mutual clients. Her mentorship and willingness to share her expert knowledge with colleagues means I have access to the information I need for difficult cases. As if that wasn’t enough, Dr Nicole continues to strive for excellence with the pursuit of continuing education. As long as there are animals needing help with behaviour, I have no doubt Dr Nicole will be providing the best possible care and advice available.”
0411 619 712
I’ve been in the habit of working with veterinary behaviourists for many years now to complement my training experiences with clients. There are some behaviour problems that we as trainers simply cannot address without help. As a wise person once said: “if your boat has a hole in the bottom, no amount of teaching someone how to row will stop the boat from sinking, and they’ll simply be spending all their time bailing the water out”.
Dr Nicole’s genuine interest in, and empathy for, each individual animal and person that she sees places her in a unique position to dispense thoughtful and competent advice on ‘fixing the boat’. She has a genuine interest in maintaining current best practice and education, and her background as a GP vet of many years gives her a solid foundation of the difference between behaviour that is expressed normally and behaviour that makes living an ordinary functional life difficult; as well as understanding and addressing the distress that this can cause the human component of the relationship.
0411 619 712
Nikhil Saha – K9 Care Obedience Training
Here’s what Nikhil says…
Cecile Ashen-Young, CPDT-KA
0435 018 083
“As an appropriately qualified dog trainer, it is important that I can refer clients to a behaviour veterinarian whenever I suspect a medical or non-training behavioural issue. Equally important is that I can develop a true collaborative partnership with a behaviour veterinarian so that the client can be provided with a balance of appropriate medical diagnosis with a well-developed and managed behaviour modification plan.
I have referred several of my clients to Dr. Nicole, and I consider myself very fortunate to have the chance to work with her. Not only is she eminently qualified and very committed to her clients, Dr Nicole is always ready to share her knowledge and expertise with me. She promotes that true collaborative effort between trainer and behaviourist that can give the client and pet the best possible chance for a happy and healthy outcome.”