Antonia Bartels is a professional dog walker and trainer in San Francisco. She has dedicated her life to strengthening the bond between pets and their people through friendly and positive training. It is her belief that with consistent, fun training and exercise, less dogs will end up in shelters.
Pam Behrens, ABCDT, CNWI Pam has loved working with animals ever since she was a little girl. She trained her first dog, a German Shepherd, in obedience and protection when she was in high school, and has been training dogs ever since. Her newest passion is K9 Nose Work, which she teaches and also competes in with her dog Bodie.
Lynette learned to bark before she learned to talk. At least that's what her mother always said. So it seemed inevitable that she would end up working with dogs and their people. She took the long route by working in high tech for many years before deciding to make a career that included her love for dogs. Lynette has had three puppies graduate from SIRIUS® training over the past 16 years before becoming a trainer herself. She found SIRIUS®' approach helped her to form positive and well adjusted relationships with her dogs that lasted a life time.
Sterling's interest in working and connecting with animals started as soon as she was born. From a young age she has been riding horses, and working with dogs and other animals. At a very young age of three she was bucked off her first pony, and was nipped on the lips kissing a dog goodbye, but that never stopped her passion. For many years Sterling has spent time living on ranches, training horses and studying working dogs. One of her hobbies is training her 15" Tiger Oscar Cichlid in his 130 gallon aquarium.
Veterinarian, animal behaviorist, and dog trainer, Dr. Ian Dunbar received his veterinary degree and a Special Honors degree in Physiology & Biochemistry from the Royal Veterinary College (London University) plus a doctorate in animal behavior from the Psychology Department at UC Berkeley, where he researched the development of social hierarchies and aggression in domestic dogs.
He has authored numerous books and DVDs about puppy/dog behavior and training, including AFTER You Get Your Puppy, How To Teach A New Dog Old Tricks and the SIRIUS® Puppy Training video.
Rayel has lived with and loved dogs all of his life. He grew up with dogs his family adopted from shelters. He started his career as a dog handler at Citizen Canine, a pet hotel and daycare center. SIRIUS® Instructor Bobbi Durston, who at the time was a behavior evaluator at Citizen Canine, saw his natural abilities with dogs and took him on as an apprentice.
Nicole officially began training dogs in 2002, but has lived with, and loved dogs her entire life. Her training career launched when she became a volunteer at the Berkeley East Bay Humane Society (BEBHS) where her natural grace and dog-handling skills were first recognized and encouraged by Kelly Gorman of Open Paw, a non-profit organization that improves the placement of great animals in new homes by offering a humane, revolutionary approach to sheltering. Nicole’s talent quickly led first to her employment at, and soon thereafter management of, the BEBHS.
Kelly Gorman Dunbar is the Founder and President of Open Paw, a non-profit organization devoted to addressing the unwanted animal problem in a whole new way, arming communities worldwide with valuable user and animal friendly training and behavior information with the goal of keeping cats and dogs out of shelters by keeping them in their original homes. Kelly lectures internationally on the principles of Open Paw and consults for animal shelters regarding layout, and staff-and-animal training protocols and procedures.
Janelle grew up in San Jose, where (much to her family's frustration) she brought home every stray dog and cat she could find. After graduating from San Jose City College, where she majored in Criminal Justice, Janelle married and assumed management of her husband's company. Her love for animals never waned, however, and she became a breeder of Golden Retrievers.
In 1989 Heidi began apprenticing under Sirius Puppy Training’s founder, Dr. Ian Dunbar and several of Sirius’ top trainers at that time. Shortly after, she started the San Jose branch which soon was a thriving location. Until then, off leash puppy classes were unheard of in that area.
Sarah, a life long dog owner, was first exposed to positive dog training methods when attending Sirius puppy Training classes in 2010 with her puppy. She started reading and researching the methods and loved learning about how to train a dog in a reward based system. Then with a little prompting from her husband decided to pursue a career as a dog trainer after 28 years in nursing.
Keri Lyall, B.A., CPDT, has been teaching puppy and adult dog training classes since 1989. She began working for Oz Puppy Training, transferred to the parks and recreation districts in Contra Costa County with her move from Sacramento to the Bay Area and in 1998 was hired by SIRIUS® Puppy Training, where she teaches with great enthusiasm in Concord and San Ramon.
Dana began her formal dog training with her first Rottweiler 30 years ago. After doing research on the breed, she knew that training would be an essential part of her life. She was hired as a trainer 2 years later and went on to establish her own training company, Yes, Good Dog. Dana has been teaching classes, offering privates training programs and working with problem behaviors now for over 25 years. She competes with her own Rottweilers in Confirmation, Rally, and Obedience.
Miki Merin, M.A., CTC, grew up with dogs and cats and a great love for all animals. She had cocker spaniels in her home in the US, and various types of cats during her summers in Israel. After attending a puppy class with her best friend's German Shepherd puppy in 2002, she knew that one day she wanted to be teaching a class just like that. The following year, during her graduate studies in Linguistics at UC Berkeley, she began her internship with SIRIUS® and apprenticeship with Bobbi Durston.
Leanne Neufeld has held a professional membership with The Association of Pet Dog Trainers since 2001.
She graduated with honors from the SFSPCA Academy for Dog Trainers CTC program. She has participated as a ‘puppy raiser’ with Canine Companions for Independence.
In 2003 Leanne began teaching classes for Dr. Ian Dunbar’s at SIRIUS, where she continues to enjoy a focus on increasing the bond between owners and their dogs. She has titled in both WCFO and CFF level III competition freestyle.
Lea Orloski has a deep love for dogs and discovered she had a natural talent with dogs while she was growing up. In 2006, she started working as a dog handler at a local dog daycare. In 2009, she began observing/assisting as a dog trainer and started to help with dog training clasees. In 2013, she attained her certificate in Training & Behvaior from the Janis Bradley Dog Training Internship, a 6-month course that focused on positive reinforcement dog training and professional client consultation.
Carlie has always loved dogs. As a child, she often dreamed of having the ability to speak with animals. When finally able to have a dog of her own, Carlie discovered that dog training is the incredibly fun and essential way to do just that. As a long-time student of SIRIUS puppy classes herself, Carlie understands what it’s like to try to learn while simultaneously juggling the puppy-cuteness factor, and the you-better-not-chew-my-shoes-poop-there-or-steal-my-breakfast challenges that arise daily when living with a beloved canine family member.
Karen's earliest memories are of playing and taking naps with her dog, Fritzi. Ever since then, dogs have been an important part of her life. Her career with dogs began as a volunteer socializing and walking shelter dogs. That led to an interest in dog training where she can help dogs and their guardians build positive and happy relationships thus reducing the number of dogs surrendered to shelters.
Naomi’s goal is to give dog owners the tools needed to empower them to make a difference in their day–to-day interactions with their dogs as well as to set the stage for a rewarding long-term relationship with their dogs. She believes that the learning process should be engaging and fun for both the family and the dog!
Eleanor made a career change into the dog training industry over 10 years ago, leaving behind a sales/customer service career in electronics. She has loved dogs all of her life and took the challenge of choosing a career where dogs are the focus. Eleanor knew she made the right decision when she was able to say to herself that she would do this job for free. (Do not tell the Dunbars, as she does enjoy the paycheck.) She loves helping people train and understand their dogs.
When the trainer is listed as TBD on a class, this means that the trainer will be announced at a later date in the future. Once a trainer is chosen, we will send an email out to all the students enrolled in the class.
Kristi Vizza, CPDT-KA is a professional dog trainer in the San Jose area. She began her work with animals by walking and socializing shelter dogs in New York City. It was during this time that she learned the importance of proper training, and it’s direct link to the quality of life that our dogs experience. This realization ignited a passion in her and she followed that passion to Best Friends Animal Society in southern Utah where she completed an immersive internship learning from some of their best trainers.