KPA CTP, CNWI, TTouch® P1
Professional Certifications & Memberships:
- Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner (KPA CTP)
- Tellington TTouch® Practitioner, Companion Animals
- Certified K9 Nose Work® Instructor (CNWI)
- Red Cross Certified in First Aid for Dogs and Cats
- The Pet Professional Guild
Why Work With Sarah?
Sarah has first-hand experience observing and training dogs of all ages, sizes, temperaments, breeds, and backgrounds. For nearly twelve years, she has worked at two different Humane Society facilities as an employee, animal control clerk, behavior technician, and as a volunteer. For three years, Sarah was a team leader for the ASPCA SAFER Behavior Assessment Team, and implemented the Open Paw Shelter Training Program. She has fostered and socialized numerous litters of puppies, and in 2015 she partnered with Dove House Advocacy Services to implement the SAF-T program to shelter animals and families together. Sarah is proud to be an official volunteer at the Humane Society and an on-call volunteer trainer for Dove House Advocacy Services. She completed a two year, hands-on intensive program to become a certified Tellington TTouch® Practitioner. She currently teaches Tellington TTouch® to students of the aquatic therapy program at La Paw Spa in Sequim, WA.
Sarah actively volunteers and competes in Nose Work® trials and events. Involved since 2012, she trials in NACSW, UKC, The ABC Games and other new nose work venues. She is also an NACSW Odor Recognition Test judge and a judge for a new scent venue. She has titled two of her dogs in NACSW K9 Nose Work. Her Border Collie mix, Little Debbie, is working on her NW3 title. Her senior chihuahua mix, Mr. Pickles, titled in NW1 and won the “Harry Award,” a special recognition for the rescue dog who demonstrates extraordinary ability and spirit in the sport of Nose Work®. He also placed third in a NW2 vehicle search. Mr. P has slowed down considerably due to blindness, deafness, heart disease, and cognitive issues, but he still enjoys the game!
Dog Behavior Specialist
Sarah has always been passionate about working with and learning about animals, from dogs, cats, and even horses. At an early age, she began riding, training, and showing horses. She trained and showed in Hunters and Jumpers, receiving multiple championships. In addition to her own work with horses, she taught young students about horse training for a couple years. After receiving her BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and working in the arts for many years, she had an opportunity to take a job at a local animal shelter. Sarah began working closely with fearful, reactive, and unsocialized dogs. These dogs required a lot of patience, and she learned quickly that each dog is unique. She shared her home with many adopted dogs (and cats) throughout the years, each one with different behavioral needs. Through her work at the shelter, and helping her own dogs with anxiety, reactivity, impulse control, and fear, Sarah was able to follow her passion and fulfill her lifelong dream of working with animals.
Modern and Effective Dog Training Methods
Animal training techniques are constantly improving, as our understanding of dog behavior becomes more sophisticated. Sarah understands that there are frustrations and joys when developing a relationship with an animal. She is committed to continuous education, and has studied with some of the most well-respected dog trainers and behavior specialists in the industry such as Pat Miller, Dr. Sophia Yin, Terry Ryan, Nicole Wilde, Kathy Cascade, Amy Herot, and Michael Shikashio. The picture here shows when Sarah attended Pia Silvani and Sue Sternberg’s instructor training course, and was chosen by her peers as the recipient of the “Inspiration Award,” an honor for the student who shows extraordinary quality or dedication. Full CV here.