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About Us


AKC Canine Good Citizen Evaluator

AKC Temperament Test Evaluator

AKC Fit Dog Instructor

Stop the 77 Bite Prevention Presenter

I’ve been a self-proclaimed dog nerd my entire life. Yes, I will be the one at a party in the kitchen talking to the dog instead of socializing with the humans.


In addition to the three years I spent working the front desk at the Shelter, I spent seven years as a foster home for Siberian Husky rescue. Every few weeks I brought home a new dog, nearly 100 in those seven years, and all of them needed training.  I have also spent several years as a member and instructor for a local training club.


Currently, I am an AKC Canine Good Citizen Evaluator, Temperament Test Evaluator and Fit Dog Instructor. I am certified in pet first aid and CPR, and I train and compete in a number of sports with my dogs.


I want to help you and your dog communicate better.  It is my goal for you to have a dog that you can live with so that it does not end up in a shelter or foster care.

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Avery (2008-2023)

Southpawz Elf Queen, CGC, TDI, RN, RATN, PKD-N, TKN, AKC Achiever Dog

Avery was my second in command. Just don’t tell her that because she thought she was in charge; it was better for everyone if we let her think that.


Avery came to me as a foster dog who had been through several homes that wanted her because “she’s just so cute”. Nobody took into consideration the physical and mental needs of a young, untrained husky/terrier mix. She was a wild child from the get-go until her final days.

Avery brought a lot into my life and helped shape me as a dog sport competitor and trainer.


Southpawz Mystery Man, CGC, TDI, PKD-T, TKN

Brogan is my helper dog and a rather serious fellow who doesn’t really want to interact with other dogs, their handlers, or even me most days. He idolizes Avery, though, and would follow her to the ends of the Earth.

Brogan was adopted to provide Avery a little competition for my attention. Instead of teaching her that she isn’t the center of the universe, Brogan became her little disciple (aka the first of her minions). Because he missed out on socialization during his formative weeks/months, he isn’t the most outgoing of dogs but he’s come a long way from the days of not letting me touch him.


Brogan will sometimes come to class and help students with meeting a new dog. He won’t socialize with others while he's in class and that's what makes him such a good helper. 

Fenway (2010-2020)

Southpawz 4 Yawkey Way, RN, CGC, RATN, PKD-N, PKD1-FF, TKN, CA, AKC Achiever Dog

Fenway’s main purpose in life was to serve as a bad example. And, as her second minion, to be the muscle to Avery’s brains.


Fenway was brought to the shelter as a stray at six months old. He was completely out of control and had little hope of being adopted. I brought him home “just for the weekend” to see how he would do outside of a kennel setting. It must have been one long weekend because he stayed for nine years.


Always the class clown, Fenway rarely made appearances in class. Unless it was to show people that no, they really don’t have the worst dog in the world, but I do. You will hear a lot of Fenway stories in class, though, because he provides great examples of real world problems and solutions.


Southpawz Falcon at the Portal, DCAT, SWN


Falcon didn't have a very good start in life. But after living his first six months in an extreme neglect situation, he's ready to put it all behind him and has agreed to join our team.

Right now Falcon is living the good life and learning what it means to be in a home, but pretty soon he will take over for Brogan as my assistant. He's also learning about different dog sports and will start competing soon.

Be on the lookout for Falcon in some of our upcoming classes as he learns what it means to be a well behaved dog.


Southpawz Haints Be Careful of Scout, FCAT, TKN


Scout arrived at the shelter needing a little extra TLC and some help working on her socialization. We knew we could help her out so she came home with me as a foster dog. Pretty soon she was the "foster dog" and shortly thereafter she became a permanent resident.

This sassy little girl has been both a pleasure and a challenge to train. Every dog comes into our life for a reason and Scout's reason is to help me sharpen my training skills and share them with our students. Rest assured, whatever puppy challenges you face, there's a pretty good chance I've dealt with the same thanks to this little spitfire.

Scout is also an up and coming sports dog having earned her first title in her first three competitions. This girl sure has a bright future ahead of her!

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