For many dog owners, the biggest barrier between them and their dog is communication - they just don't know how to make their dog understand and pay attention. This leads to all kinds of frustrating behavior problems and takes away from the enjoyment of owning a dog.
When we humans communicate with our dogs, we usually talk to them as if they are furry humans, not canines. They don't understand us and then we get upset - we think they are disobedient but really, they are just confused! We forget that dogs view the world differently from us, and it's the lack of mutual understanding that causes conflict in so many human-dog packs.
But there is a solution, and it's easier than you think! When you are able to communicate clearly with your dog - through words, actions and energy - you can fast-track your training, increase obedience and establish leadership. All without using harsh methods or paying thousands of dollars.
That's why the K9H method is truly owner-focused. We help dog owners learn to be in control of their dog while protecting the bond they already have. Owner-focused training ensures that the results from training endure, even after the owner is no longer actively working with a trainer.
Our methods teach and empower owners and dogs alike. We don't rely on training collars, physical corrections or excessive food bribes to get behaviors. Instead, we focus on turning owners into leaders who understand canine instinct and guide dogs to make better choices.
Talking to the kids at Perkins Elementary about dog safety
Hi Dog Moms and Dog Dads, I'm Christine - a Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT-KA), owner of K9 Holistics and proud German shepherd mama! It is my mission - and the mission of K9H - to help people better understand their dogs, and help dogs better understand their people. In my years of working with dogs, I've found that it's a lack of understanding that is one of the biggest contributors to behavior problems and conflicts in the human-dog pack. I'm out to change that!
K9 Holistics is a reflection of my values in dog training and business - compassion, integrity, outstanding service and education. I hope that every client we work with senses the influence of those values and feels that they not only have a dog trainer, but a partner in their dog's wellbeing as well.
The nitty gritty details...
I was born and raised here in St.Petersburg, Florida. In 2004, I moved to Chicago to attend Northwestern University, where I graduated with a BA in Communications. An animal lover all my life, my professional work with dogs began in 2011 when I took a side gig as a dog walker in Chicago while pursuing a career in music. It was immediately clear that I had a knack for working with dogs, and just a year later I opened my own dog walking company that approached pet care in a new way.
As a student of dog behavior and psychology, I knew it was extremely important for dog walkers and pet sitters to be trained in dog handling and have a basic understanding of how the canine mind operates. Because of this unique approach, the business quickly grew and attracted many clients - especially those whose dogs had been rejected by other pet care companies. Turns out, I'd created a business for problem dogs! And so my career as a trainer was off to a great start.
My work had me consulting on cases involving a wide array of behavioral issues. I gained a great deal of experience and expertise in treating leash reactivity and other leash-related issues. Reactivity is a common
a common problem among German shepherd dogs, so this particular breed represented a majority of my caseload. Working with GSDs from various lines and backgrounds, I developed a keen insight and understanding of training and rehabilitation techniques for the breed and had great success in teaching GSD owners how to handle and work with their dog's intelligence, sensitivity and drive.
I have also been heavily involved with shelter and rescue work over the years, including training and fostering. I work closely with Maxx and Me and Passion4Pits rescue groups, assisting foster and forever parents rehabilitate their rescue dogs. Last year, I served as a contract trainer for the Tampa Bay SPCA - teaching several classes every week. Though I have worked with over 100 dog breeds, my work with animals is not limited to canines. I served as a volunteer care provider and supervisor at the Suncoast Primate Sanctuary in Palm Harbor, FL where I worked with many species of primates, reptiles and birds.
In addition to receiving my certification as a professional dog trainer (CPDT), I have completed multiple programs for dog trainers created by Dr. Ian Dunbar, whose research and experience has been invaluable to the field of dog training over the last 40 years. I am a member of the Association for Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) and the United Schutzhund Clubs of America (USCA), as well as an APDT C.L.A.S.S. (Canine Life and Social Skills) Instructor and Evaluator, and I conduct all levels of evaluations.