Owner - Trainer
Photo by Stewart Event Images
About The Trainer
The phrase, “gone to the dogs”, is certainly an appropriate one to describe my life. By
trade, I am an artist. I have always enjoyed drawing and painting. One of my primary
interests, as a child, was to draw and paint animals - dogs, cats, birds, horses, and other
I have always had dogs; they were my friends and companions during my childhood and
afterwards. I enrolled in my first obedience class with the Alamance Kennel Club in 1988.
From there, I was hooked.
Throughout the years, I have participated in many aspects of training and showing dogs…
earning titles in obedience, agility, conformation, herding, and freestyle, on many dogs...
both personal and client dogs. Throughout the years, my dogs and I have earned multiple
obedience titles and have several High In Trial awards, as well as qualifying for and
showing at the Eastern Regional Championships. Another love, is the sport of tracking; I
have worked with several dogs in the tracking field and plan to compete in the near future
with one of my dogs.
I am an approved obedience and rally judge for the Australian Shepherd Club of America.
My assignments have taken me across the United States and as far away as Germany.
Other accomplishments include being an evaluator for the AKC’s Canine Good Citizen and
Star Puppy program.
For over fourteen years, I was an Instructor of Commercial Art and Advertising Design at
Alamance Community College, Haw River, NC; this is where I discovered that I loved to
teach. In 1998, I retired from teaching art and began working full-time at the Bon-Clyde
Learning Center, where I had been training my dogs and working as an instructor since
1993. The Bon-Clyde Learning Center, located in Sanford, NC, is one of the east coast’s
premier dog training facilities. Classes taught ranged from all levels of obedience and
agility, to canine acting, freestyle, and breed handling. Working at Bon-Clyde was very
exciting for me. The wide variety of seminars and guest speakers that we had, offered
valuable training information, not only for me with my dog, but as a major influence in
helping me to understand dogs and their people, the variety of training methods available,
and how understanding the two elements offers a greater, more successful training
In 2006, I left the Sanford area and opened a dog training center in Burlington, NC.
Dogtown Training Academy, LLC, offers training from puppy to competition level obedience
and agility, breed handling, and more.
The facility has expanded over the years (as neighboring businesses have moved), to a
7,200 sq. ft training center that includes a small store and a dog wash with grooming
options. My love of dog training, the many years spent teaching, along with learning a
variety of training skills and methods, has helped me to build a business I am very proud of
and enjoy, each and every working day.
Aside from the large assortment of client dogs I have worked with and shown, my
personal training challenges are Australian Shepherds, Tiger, Lovie, and 3 year old, Rory.
Tiger has worked in agility, rally and obedience, where he has earned several High In Trial
rally awards! Lovie is an ASCA Champion and AKC Grand Champion, shown in Bred-By
conformation classes and has herding titles. Puppy, Rory, is the love of my life and is in
training to show in all areas - herding, obedience, rally, tracking, and conformation. At the
ASCA 2015 National Specialty, he Qualified in the Most Versatile Aussie Competition... at 1.5
years of age!
An “adoptee” that has joined my “pack”, is Teddy, a Scottish Terrier. Teddy is training in
agility and obedience, and currently holds ASCA Masters/AKC Excellent Rally titles, has his
AKC/ASCA-CD and is showing in Open level obedience, and runningMasters level agility.
My husband and I also own two Jack Russell Terriers that liven up our household on a
Future goals are to continue to offer the best in dog training and helping others to
understand the wonderful relationship that dogs can bring to us, especially when we strive
to understand the dog and it’s personality. A healthy relationship is one built of trust and
balance. By understanding our dogs, and how our actions and energies affect them, we can
increase the outcome of successful training.
Let Dogtown Training Academy, LLC help you to create a wonderful relationship
and bond with your dog. It is our goal to help you to understand and train your dog to the
level that you desire for a great family pet or a competition-level performance dog.
I got my ﬁrst puppy when I was 7 years old. He was part border collie part English
Shepherd and his name was Patton. That was it for me. I taught him tricks and
obedience. We were on a television show in Asheville NC and we were in talent
shows and did demonstrations. When I was 10 years old, my parents found
someone to give me formal obedience lessons and I began competing. I got my ﬁrst
English Springer Spaniel at 14 and bred, trained and showed them for over 30 years. I
had the national Obedience Springer of the Year and Tracking Springer of the Year
with my dog Tango. I decided that I needed to change breeds due to health and
temperament issues popping up in springers so I got a border collie named Jet. He is
the smartest dog I have ever known and has been an amazing obedience and herding
dog. I now have 4 other border collies now and have a sheep farm. Jet is retired now
but he still gets the credit for where I am now with my farm and other dogs. I have
been teaching at Dogtown Training Academy for several years. I love teaching and
working with people and their companions. I have so enjoyed the relationships that I
have had with my own dogs through training that I want everyone else to have the
experience as well. I always tell people that the bond you develop with a dog that you
train is very strong and deep.