About Virginia Dare, CTP
My dog training business was established in 1991, first in WI and then in VA. In 2015, I moved back to my hometown area of NY / CT, and am happy to be working with people and their pets here!
I enjoy teaching people as much as I do dogs, and am very attentive to your needs and goals for your pet. Who cares how I think a dog should behave -- you're the one living with your dog! My goal is to help each pet parent experience the best possible relationship with their furry friend, building a path to clear communication and a joyful working partnership.
I work hard to provide solid, effective training and behavior modification advice -- stuff that makes sense, that's do-able, and that moves you to your goals, while maintaining positive, humane techniques that are fun for everyone involved.
One of the best things about my job is there's always new stuff to learn. I've been fortunate to have studied under some of the most talented giants in the industry. And my continuing education includes attendance at workshops, conferences and webinars as often as possible, as well as plenty of reading to stay on top of the latest research in my field. I've completed an in-depth applied behavior analysis course that enhanced my training and problem-solving skills. I've also been a professional member of the Behavior Education Network, and have a Level 2 certification in TAGteach (www.tagteach.com).
Additional background details:
Certified Training Partner (CTP), Karen Pryor Academy of Animal Training & Behavior
Contributing curriculum writer for Karen Pryor's Academy of Animal Training & Behavior curriculum
Contributing curriculum writer and Mentor Trainer for CATCH Canine Trainers Academy
Nationally recognized positive reinforcement trainer and seminar presenter, speaking throughout the U.S. and overseas
Co-producer of clicker training DVDs that are sold worldwide
Faculty member of Karen Pryor's ClickerExpos for six years
Head trainer for eight years with Pixie's PenPals, a pet/prison program where shelter dogs were paired with inmates for training before being adopted to the public
Executive trainer and evaluator for a therapy dog organization
Team member of a U.S. Army research project, working on an automated system for scent detection training in rodents
My own dogs have been involved in animal acting, herding, agility, and pet therapy visits. Some of the breeds I've shared my life with include: Rhodesian ridgebacks, border collies, miniature pinschers, papillons, German shepherds, a cattle dog, a chihuahua, and many fabulous mixed breeds of colorful heritage.
I've also shared my home with and trained dozens of delightful rats, cats, agoutis, guinea pigs, a rabbit, and ducks.
When not working with critters, I love to garden, and dabble in artsy hobbies, which you can check out here.