After a few years of service in the South African Army Woman’s College (SALVKOL) and the SANDF and a stint in accounting, I started my behaviour and training career in 2001 by studying Companion Animal Behaviour through the Technikon of Pretoria.
In 2003 I finished the 3 year Tellington Ttouch™ Course and qualified as a Certified Practitioner Level 1 for companion animals.
I was very fortunate and grateful to have had an 18 month internship at the Cape Animal Behaviour Centre in Cape Town under the guidance of Mike Wood. His high standards, critical thinking and scientific mind laid the foundation for my approach to behaviour modification. After my internship I worked there as an associate consultant and at the end of 2004, I opened my own consulting business.
My Advance Diploma in Companion Animal Behaviour and Training via the Centre of Applied Pet Ethology (COAPE) was completed in 2008 in the UK and in 2012, I became a CAPBT Practitioner with COAPE, which is the designation given to persons who have passed the evaluation for the practical application of the Advance Diploma.
In 2013 I studied in Seattle and became the first Karen Pryor Academy Certified Clicker Training Partner in South Africa.
Whilst in Seattle, I also attended a four day “Chicken Clicker Training Camp” presented by KPA Faculty Member and Instructor Terry Ryan. Training another species, especially one that is not as amenable and biddable as dogs, allows you the opportunity to hone your mechanical training skills and effectively apply learning theory, lateral thinking and problem solving skills.
The effect of diet on the mood-state and well-being for humans has been well researched and the same can be said for our dogs. So in 2014, I completed the Companion Animal Sciences Institute’s one year Canine Nutrition Certificate.
In 2014, I also completed the LLA Applied Behaviour Analysis course with Professor Susan G. Friedman of the Department of Psychology at Utah State University. This is an in-depth approach to effectively construct a Functional Behaviour Analysis to design a more effectual behaviour change program.
Early in 2016, I took a few months absence from consulting, worked on a farm sanctuary and trained a pig to paint. The motivation behind this project was to raise awareness of the intelligence of all animals. By the end of the year, I longed to work with dogs again on a daily basis and re-opened Canine Concepts®.
In 2018, I completed the Working with Aggression Cases A-Z course, and in 2019, I completed the Aggression in Dogs Master course, both presented by New York’s canine aggression expert Michael Shikashio.
In 2020 I completed the Fear Free® Certification Program that is geared towards fear, anxiety and stress free vet visits as well as husbandry behaviours.
In 2021 I completed the Applied Ethology Family Dog Mediation® course, which is a thorough scientific examination of the intersection of canine and human evolution, welfare, behaviour and relationship in the modern world. FDM® is about bringing the integrated scientific concepts of “why” behaviour occurs together with the “how” of behaviour change.
I work in close collaboration with your Primary Veterinarian, and if need be, a Veterinary Behaviourist, Physiotherapist, or any other auxiliary professional, to provide you and your dog with the most comprehensive service.
Coaching people and training dogs to live their best lives, is my passion and I welcome the opportunity to encourage your desire to learn more about your dog.
Publications, write-ups & invitations:
Quoted in the Kulula July 2019 inflight magazine article: Instafamous Pet
Cape Talk Radio – Pippy Hudson Show – June 2015 – Interview on Canine Concepts
Espresso Afternoon Show – May 2015 – Interview for Tellington Ttouch™
Teva Vet Talk – April 2015 – Staff Training
NOPvideOly interview, Washington – March 2013 – International dog trainers learn with chickens to improve mechanical skills
Private client in Monte Carlo, Monaco – for behaviour modification of their fearful dog – November 2012
Equine-Librium College – 2012 & 2013 – 2 day lectures – canine behaviour for physiotherapy students
Woef&Kie, KykNET interview – June 2012 – “Pilates for dogs” with co-author Marinette Teeling
Gordons Bay Animal Hospital re-opening – October 2011 – Guest speaker
Animal Talk – November 2011 – “Stressed out – how to recognize and reduce stress in your dog”
Animal Talk – September 2011 – “Pilates for dogs” with co-author Marinette Teeling
Survival Guide – spring 2011 – “Preparing and introducing your dog to your new baby”
E-TV News interview – 2008 – Training a deaf dog
My Week write up – August 2006 – “How do you do it?”
IXIA Street Veterinary Practice Newsletter – 2004 – “Benefits of walking your dog”
Shar Pei Club invite – 2004 – Introduction & demonstration of Clicker training and Tellington Ttouch™
Die Tyger Burger – July 2003 – “Touch therapy can change dogs’ lives”
Qualifications at a glance:
˚ Cert CAB (Companion Animal Behaviour)
˚ Adv Dip CABT (Companion Animal Behaviour and Training)
˚ CAPBT Practitioner (Practical assessment)
˚ CA PA 1 (Tellington Ttouch™ Practitioner for dogs)
˚ KPA CTP (Certified Clicker Trainer #21645)
˚ Cert CN (Canine Nutrition)
˚ LLA (Applied Behaviour Analysis)
˚ FFCP (Certified Fear Free® Trainer)
˚ FDM (Certified Family Dog Mediator®)
~ Chicken Clicker Training Camp
~ Working Aggression Cases A-Z
~ Dog Aggression Master Course
Professional memberships at a glance:
° Karen Pryor Academy – Premium International, USA
° Pet Professional Guild, USA
° Fear Free® Pet Professionals, USA
° Behaviour Education Network, USA
° Tellington Ttouch® Guild, SA