I want to give people what I was looking for when I first started training my own dog. A friendly, controllable pet. Helpful, supportive instruction. Somewhere I could do just the basics or progress to more advanced training and learn more about dog behaviour.
I manage Positively Pets and instruct the classes. As well as training dogs since 1980 something-or-other my qualifications include:
- Puppy Class Instruction, accredited by the Open College Network
- Understanding the Canine Human Interface (Distinction) from the Animal Care College
- Basic Counselling Skills
- International Dog Parkour Association - Instructor Certificate. More on Dog Parkour here.
My background is in advice work with people. I used to work as a behaviourist helping dogs and cats with problems, but decided prevention is better than cure and I could help more people and their pets by putting all my efforts into class.
I have competed in obedience up to Class A/B and won through to Grade 7 (the highest) grade in agility. I was one of the original members of the APDT. As well as training in my main interests of agility and obedience, I have attended training courses in, among other things, gundog work, tracking, clicker training and heelwork to music.
I have two dogs, Beetle the sometimes-I-do-and-sometimes-I-don't working type Cocker Spaniel/Yorkie cross and Currant the can-I-do-that-again-really-fast-and-can-I-do-it-really-high-please-can-I? -Can-I? Pomeranian.
As Assistant Instructor, Emma mainly helps students one to one while the instructor takes care of the whole class. She helps if a particular dog isn't learning as quickly as his owner expects, answers questions on an individual level, and deputises as instructor when the need arises.
Emma has trained dogs for all her adult life (and before!). February 2016 she welcomed Sprocker Sonnet into her home. Her family have Miniature Schnauzers, Jana and Katja. And she dog sits for friends whenever she can.
She also does voluntary work with groups of young people and is working on her teaching skills for this and her doggy work. She has achieved Level 3 certificate in Counselling Skills and Theory. She's working towards a Level 3 qualification in Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector and a Level 4 qualification in Youth Leadership and Training.
Mary started training her Labradoodle, Poppy, at Posipets Puppy Classes September 2010. Poppy was her first dog and they turned out to be a perfect match from Day 1. Their partnership has been meteoric, Poppy was the top winning medium-size agility dog in the North of England 2014 and 2015.
Mary became the proud owner-mum of Gracie the Yorkshire Terrier Papillon in January 2016. Gracie has her own facebook page and is going to become a small dog agility champion and is not spoiled at all, not at all.
Mary was an enthusiastic and diligent student, she's come a long way at Positively Pets in a short time. Mary at first volunteered and now she's a fully fledged assistant, helping students with an understanding and kindness bred of being so recently in the shoes of a new-starter herself.
She looks after all course bookings and sorts (everything!) at class. She'll help you choose the right training equipment for your dog and maintains our library of useful info for students.
Mo has two dogs, Zeeba the Rhodesian Ridgeback and Hettie the Wire Haired Vizsla/Labrador Retriever. She's owned dogs as long as she can remember, mainly rescues and bigger breeds. As well as pet obedience training, she's done quite a bit of agility with them. She's also a First Aider.
After 9 years as assistant, Mo left us in 2013 to help her husband set up a new business, but couldn't stay gone for long. She's back! And while she was off she also qualified as a Clinical Canine Massage Therapist, visit her here.
Other Class Assistants pop in and out. All have varying backgrounds, qualifications and experience but all have a commitment to helping pet owners and their dogs.
We knew Rachel when she was still school-aged when she came to Puppy Class with her mum and their Labrador Retriever.
When Rachel brought her own Puppy, Tybalt the Miniature Pinscher Chihuahua to class in 2013 she was determined to get the most out of her training and very quickly became a member of the team.