Picture of Ali Brown and her dogs Acacia and BingAli Brown graduated from Ursinus College with a B.S. in Psychology, and earned her M.Ed. in Human Development / Behavioral Science from Lehigh University. Working earlier in her career as a behavior therapist/consultant with mentally challenged children and adults, she made a fulfilling switch to working with dogs in 1998.

In 2001, Ali became one of the first 100 trainers to receive her CPDT title (Certified Pet Dog Trainer) from Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers (CCPDT). In May 2008, she became a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant (CDBC) through the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC). Ali takes great pride in providing non-force training methods for dogs and their people. Ali was a member of the APDT (Association of Pet Dog Trainers) for 15 years and served on multiple committees as well as serving on the Board of Directors for a 3 year term.

She lives, trains and works with Bing, a 8-year-old Belgian Sheepdog whose abilities and antics qualify him for his own section of this Website, and two rescues, Tango and Harriet.

Ali is a great believer in forever learning. She attends seminars, IAABC conferences and Clicker Expo conferences regularly. Recent continuing education events Ali has attended include two separate Nose Work seminars. The first was in April 2010: Intro to Nose Work and was presented by Jill-Marie O'Brien and Amy Herot. The second, Intro to Odor, took place in June 2011 and was attended by three Great Companions trainers. As a result, Great Companions has a VERY popular and full Scent Detective program.

Also in June 2010, Ali attented the 4-day CAPPDT conference (Canadian APDT), in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. There, Ali presented her 8-hour Scaredy Dog Seminar, complete with video examples from actual training exercises shot at Great Companions.

Ali Brown, smiling during her recent Rally TrialYou can read about one of the more unusual training events Ali was involved in -- a week-long Chicken Camp, run by behavior guru, Bob Bailey, and hosted by Terry Ryan in Washington State. Click here for the whole story.

Giving is as important as receiving, and Ali does just that. She has been traveling the nation, delivering her one-day and two-day seminars on fearful and reactive dogs (www.ScaredyDog.info); this seminar has taken her as far as Alaska, California and Florida. Ali leaps at any invitation to share the information she has learned regarding this issue.

Another passion for her is Rally. Ali is an C_WAGS judge at all levels. What makes Rally unique is that it is competitive obedience for anyone and everyone, regardless of age, gender, breed, mix, handicap, or level of competitiveness. It's more about the relationship between the owner and the dog and having fun, than it is about precision. Ali's judging assignments are usually close to home, but they have taken her as far west as Arizona and California; she plans on repeating that assignment as often as possible. Ali was the Advisor to the Board of Directors of the APDT for Rally and was the Co-Chair of the Rally committee.

Agility has become a source of amazement for Ali. Agility is a real craze among dog-lovers, but what Ali finds most fascinating is how precise body movement and posture must be in order to communicate effectively with your canine partner. She's always known that body language is important; agility makes that fact screamingly clear! Click here to see Ali and Bing in action in Agility.

Cover Scaredy Dog for About the Trainer Click here to buy Scaredy Dog! book Ali has traveled extensively, living for two years in London, England, and seven years in Ottawa, Canada, before coming back to the Lehigh Valley. More recently, Ali's travels usually include her husband and at least two dogs and have taken them to Glacier National Park, Montana; Hot Springs, Arkansas; Boise, Idaho; Phoenix, Arizona; Moab, Utah; Santa Fe, New Mexico; Austin, Texas; New Orleans, Louisiana; along with numerous other trips within 200 miles that include camping and hotel stays, big cities and little towns, state and national parks, and all with the dogs coming along for the ride.

Ali's second book, FOCUS NOT FEAR, TRAINING INSIGHTS FROM A REACTIVE DOG CLASS (2008) is available by clicking here and through Dogwise.

Her first book, SCAREDY DOG! UNDERSTANDING AND REHABILITATING YOUR REACTIVE DOG, was published in June 2004 and revised in 2009. The book can be purchased through Dogwise, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other book sellers nationally, and is available through this Web site. It includes training methods that are easy to implement, and comes from her experience with individual training sessions and group classes on the subject. For more information on the book please go to the ReactiveDog.com website. Ali's seminar DVD, which is based on her book Scaredy Dog!, and her Reactive Dog Classes DVD are also available on the ReactiveDog.com Website.

Sue Sanders

Sue Sanders, pictured here with TedSue Sanders, RNC, CPDT-KA, graduated from The Allentown Hospital School of Nursing with her RN diploma. She has worked in various areas of nursing including 15 years in adult Intensive Care and the past 16 years in Neonatal Intensive Care. She obtained her RNC – certification in the NICU specialty, after an extensive course at Hershey Medical Center in 1996. Sue is a professional member of the Association Of Pet Dog Trainers. She lives with Tony, an 11-year-old JRT who loves to hunt and chase mice, and hopes for success as an Earthdog.

Sue’s work with animals began over 30 years ago when she served on the Board of Directors as Membership Secretary for Animals In Distress, a local no-kill shelter. She also actively participated for several years in vaccinating the resident cats, fostering as needed, and assisting with cat adoptions.

Along came a mellow Jack Russell Terrier, Teddy, in 1993.There was no Great Companions then, no positive training classes available, but in 2003, Sue began training and working with Ali Brown, M.Ed.,CPDT-KA, CDBC. She and Teddy never left, taking every class offered as well as weekly private lessons. Teddy became an avid Rally Obedience titlist and a Therapy Dog. Tony, a stray Jack Russell Terrier, became part of the household in 2004, offering some training challenges of his own! Over the years, Tony has shown the merits of positive training in his own way. Initially a noise- reactive, very easily over stimulated, anxious dog, he has become a wonderful companion who loves to learn new things and learns so very quickly!  

Having become a loyal believer in the merits of non-force, positive training methods, Sue became Ali’s assistant for nearly a year, as she continued to read and train and learn. She received her certification (CPDT-KA) as a professional pet dog trainer in November of 2007 from the Certification Council For Pet Dog Trainers (CCPDT). In 2008 she became an AKC certified Canine Good Citizen evaluator, in 2011 an APDT  C.L.A.S.S. evaluator, and in 2103, she became an Approved C-WAGS Advocate.

 

Continuing education is part of Great Companions’ commitment to excellence as professional trainers. Besides many on-line telecourses, Sue has attended both the Intro to Nose Work and Intro to Odor seminars presented by Jill- Marie O’Brien and Amy Herot. She also attended the Canine Freestyle Federation seminar presented by Joan Tennille and hosted by Great Companions. Ali’s dog Acacia graciously agreed to work with Sue that day and fun was had by all! Sue attended the APDT Conference and Trade Shows in Atlanta and San Diego, including a workshop with Terry Ryan. She also had the pleasure of attending a Bob Bailey seminar in 2011. The 2013 Clicker Expo in Connecticut is next!  

 

As a trainer with Great Companions, Sue conducts classes in Puppy Manners and Socialization, including the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy program; Puppy Teens class for puppies entering their adolescent period; Foundations, a basic obedience course; a recall/loose leash walking class; a greetings, stays, games class. Contact Sue at 610-390-9679, or email her.

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Kim Pike

 

Trainer Kim Pike and her dogsKim Pike is a certified obedience instructor who graduated from Animal Behavior College under the mentorship of Ali Brown. She is a member of Truly Dog Friendly and The Pet Professional Guild.

In addition to the five dogs that share her life, Kim regularly opens her home to foster dogs in need. Kim is active in rescue and regularly fosters both Puppy Mill and behaviorally challenged dogs. It was one of her fosters, Asher, that led Kim to Ali Brown. Asher had serious issues and was on the verge of being euthanized. Kim decided to try to work with him. Ali helped Kim understand how to change Asher’s behavior in a force free manner and Asher became Kim’s dog and partner.

After working through his issues, Kim began exhibiting in APDT Rally Obedience with Asher and with Demon. Asher and Kim have earned their ARCHMX and Demon and Kim have earned their ARCH. Love of this dog sport inspired Kim to first become a USDAA Cynosport (formerly APDT) Rally Judge and later a C-WAGS Rally Judge.

After attending an Intro to Nose Work seminar in March of 2010, Kim developed an interest in scent detection work. In September of 2010, Kim attended an intensive four-day Nose Work Camp where she began her training to become a certified instructor. In May of 2011, Kim completed the required instructor’s education program and was certified as the first associate K9 Nose Work® Instructor in the Lehigh Valley. In 2012, Kim became the first C-WAGS Scent Detective judge on the Eastern Seaboard.
 

Click here to contact Kim via email or by phone at 484 332-9304

Karen Schelling


Karen SchellingKaren Schelling has been involved in showing and training dogs since the mid-nineties. She initially began training in obedience with the late Alma Arnold in the Lehigh Valley, PA area as many beginners have done: to develop obedience skills for her rescue dog, an Australian Shepherd named Mickey Finn, and her first rescue, English Springer Spaniel, Jake of Heatherfield.

 

At the encouragement of friends, she eventually developed a small agility and obedience training group, Heatherfield Training. Her former experience as a psychotherapist has provided an excellent background for working with both humans and animals. As part of her graduate level training in Psychology, she engaged in the study of animal behavior and conducted original research with herd animals (e.g., horses). The combination of therapeutic interventions, animal behavior research and experience working with dogs appears to have created a rather unique training style, which seems to be appreciated by both the handlers and the dogs.

Karen actively shows in AKC and USDAA agility trials, AKC Rally-O and regular AKC obedience classes with her two English Springer Spaniels, Riley, MACH 6 Aubrey’s Jump for Joy, UD, RAE, and two year old Rosie, Aubrey’s Run For the Roses, CGC, CDX, RA, MX, MXJ, XF. Riley was the 4th place finalist in the 20" jump height at AKC Invitationals in 2008 and holds the breed record for the Clean Run 60 weave pole challenge. He is a two-time winner of the high combined award for agility and rally at the All Star Dog Obedience and Agility Tournament and was English Springer Spaniel Field Trial Association’s Rally Springer of the Year in 2009. More recently he finished in the top 13% with all clean runs at 2011 AKC Nationals and was the #2 dog for PA in the State teams competition.


Karen is the author of several short stories related to agility competition:

  • “This is Jake,” Front and Finish, Nov, 2004.
  • “Harley Runs the National,” Spaniel Journal, May, 2006.
  • “National Velvet at the AKC Invitational,” Clean Run, Jan.2010.

Karen is currently a member of the Keystone Agility Club, and the English Springer Spaniel Field Trial Association.  She trains with Mary Ellen Barry and Keystone Agility club.

 

“I enjoy showing in regular obedience classes and Rally; however, agility is my passion.  Initially, my goal was to have the top-ranked English Springer Spaniel in AKC agility.  When Riley, my three-year-old Master’s level competition dog sustained an injury while hiking, I gave up that dream. I no longer want to be a World Team member or break any records.  Although Riley has made a full recovery, I am aware that each precious moment on the agility field or in the obedience ring is a gift. I take the gift and run fast, run clean."
Happy Trails,
Karen

You can reach Karen through her website, www.heatherfielddogtraining.com, via email:schellingkaren@yahoo.com, or by phone: 215-208-7454

Deb Lipartito


Deb LipartitoDeb graduated from Glassboro State College (recently renamed Rowan University) with a B.S. in Business Administration and a concentration in Computer Science. She is a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers, the Animal Behavior Society, Truly Dog-Friendly Trainers and an Associate Member of Therapy Dogs International. She lives with her ex-racing greyhounds, Missile and Bond.

Deb uses positive reinforcement training techniques, including clicker training, to teach and reinforce the desired behavior in dogs. She believes training should be fun for both the owner and the dog in order to achieve the best results. By helping teach people to communicate clearly with their dogs, coaching them on how to build a stronger bond with their dogs and showing them how to earn their dogs' compliance without using physical force/punishment, she makes training both enjoyable and effective.

She also feels it is very important to get puppies off to a good start so that they mature into confident, well-adjusted adult dogs. Proper, safe socialization and handling is extremely important from the time the puppy is brought into their new home to help prevent fearful and aggressive behavior later in life. Deb enjoys working with owners and their puppies to insure their puppies get a good start on socialization and training in order to prevent bad habits from forming, to encourage socially appropriate behavior and to help foster satisfying long-term human-canine relationships.

Deb continuously strives to improve her knowledge, skills and techniques by attending seminars and lectures given by canine training, behavior and veterinary experts, attending classes taught by other talented trainers and reading books and trade journals regularly. She volunteers for various rescue groups and shelters when she can. She trains her own dogs in activities such as agility, rally obedience and tricks. Her greyhound, Missile, has his CGC and is a certified Therapy Dog (TDI) that makes visits to area nursing homes and facilities for disabled people.

Deb teaches group classes and also provides private training for clients in their homes. Click here to contact Deb via email.
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