I grew up with German Shepherds and my mom owns a kennel where she raises German Shepherds. I have over 30 years of experience in dog training with various breeds, with 17 years in search and rescue work for the state of Virginia and 2 years in England with Dartmoor Mountain Rescue. I am the only trainer that does search and rescue that has had state certification with Virginia Department of Emergency Management that trains within the Hampton Roads area. Having worked with law enforcement and many officials over the years in various venues, the quality of my training must meet the highest standards. My dogs have to meet the highest standards of training as well. Always do checking on individuals who claim to do this type of work as well as with state and local law enforcement and search agencies.
I started my adult life enlisting in the US Army at 17 years old as an Infantryman, I served for four years and spent time stationed at Fort Riley, Kansas and 1 11months deployment. During my time in the Army, I began training with K9 EOD teams and attended multiple classes before being prematurely deployed before having the opportunity to continue. After leaving the army, I transitioned my career into international coal exports for 6 years. I began as a boarding agent, working in conjunction with the USCG and US Customs, and worked my way up the ladder into an executive supervisor role, overseeing the day to day operations and managment of teams in multiple states. After working in a white-collar setting, I realized that I wasn't being fulfilled and chose to leave the coal industry to pursue a lifelong passion and dream of working with K9s. I attended school at American K-9 Interdictions (AK9I) where I spent over 600 hours of on leash time, training and nationally certifying what was a very green adolescent Belgian Malinois, into my true bonded explosive detection & apprehension K9 partner, Yuri. After returning to the K9 world, I was working at a government contracting facility caring for and assisting with the training of 50+ explosive and narcotic detection K9s, as well as apprehension K9s. My passion for dogs is not limited only to the level of working dogs. I have a soft spot for rescue and rehabilitation. In addition to my K9 partner, I also have 2 rescue dogs of my own, a senior pit-mix who is a rear leg amputee, Tilla, and a senior lab mix, Lana who both originated in less than ideal situations and have become the most loving companions.
In my free time, you can often find me spending time with my 4-year-old son, working with K9 Yuri, traveling the world with my love, hiking mountainsides, or perched up somewhere with a fishing pole in hand. I live for the outdoors and making the most of every opportunity.
I grew up around dogs. I have 2 dogs of my own, Nitro and Gemma. Learned everything about training dogs from my mom Brandy. I started as kennel staff and worked my way up to assistant trainer. I work with the day training dogs and puppies. I also teach the AKC S.T.A.R puppy class.
I also believe there is a consequence for undesirable behavior. I use the analogy of being ticketed for speeding in your vehicle......it doesn't hurt but makes you think twice before doing it again!
I have shown dogs in obedience, trained therapy dogs and work dogs in Schutzhund, along with having trained pet quality dogs for the past 12 years. I also work with Virginia German Shepherd Rescue in the rehabilitation of dogs with behavioral issues so that they can be adopted out as lifelong quality family members. I am also a published author of a training book. With 30 years of experience in many aspects of dog training, it would be my pleasure to put my extensive experience to work for you!