Sally Hopkins - Canine Consultant
Sally Hopkins has always been interested in dogs (particularly Border Collies) and has a broad background in most aspects of the canine world. She was one of the first group of students to take the two year course (International Dog Training School) run by Sheila Harper Canine Education in Rugeley, and was taught by world renowned teachers such as Turid Rugaas (Norway), Alan Bauman (USA), John Rogerson and Sheila Harper (UK). This extensive course made her aware of causes and symptoms of stress in dogs and how these affected a dog's behaviour and ability to learn. It also gave her an insight into how dogs communicate not only with each other but with humans as well. She uses this knowledge and experience in many different ways -
Dog Trainer & Lecturer
As a Full Member (number 0018) of the Pet Dog Trainers of Europe, she has regularly traveled around Europe (eg Greece, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, Italy and Germany), giving a variety of different lectures to help and support like-minded dog trainers, helping them to train student dog trainers in the kind positive methods that the PDTE promotes. Sally is also a Member of the UK Association of Pet Dog Trainers (number 919) and the Pet Professional Guild (number 9144688).
Combining her knowledge of stress-reducing training methods with her long experience of agility and flyball, Sally was asked to help introduce agility and flyball to Greece by StarDogs Positive Training in Athens. She is an Associate of this Organisation and is very pround of what Yiannis Arachovitis has achieved with his school for dog trainers in the past 10 years. She has also given lectures on "Reducing Stress in Agility and Flyball" in Finland and in the UK.
Inventor & Designer of Dog Harnesses, Collars & Leads
For some years now Sally has been a Canine Consultant for various businesses in the Pet Industry (both in the UK and overseas). She was the original inventor and designer of the Dog Games' Fleece Lined Harness (inventing a revolutionary new way of padding the girth strap so that it did not rub under the dog's armpits), the Perfect Fit Harness with its innovative modular construction, and designed new ways of lining collars and leads. Her motivation and drive to invent and improve these and many other products is to help to enrich the lives of both dogs and humans. Because of the success of these products, they are now being sold not only by her company - Dog Games Ltd - but also by retailers in Europe, Far East and North America and are highly prized and sought after by dog owners all over the world.
Writer & Inventor of a Dog Training Programme
One of Sally's great loves is to write and over the years she has built this Dog Games website in order pass on her knowledge about dog and human behaviour. It has over 400 pages of information on a variety of different dog related subjects, and it also explains how to train the eight different Games she has invented for pet dog owners to do either at home or at local dog clubs. Because no expensive or specialised equipment is needed these Games can be done anywhere in the world. Each stage of the dog's progress is rewarded with certificates and rosettes to motivate the handler to carry on the step-by-step training. Meanwhile, the participants are unwittingly learning how to reduce stress levels in their dogs and understand their behaviour and body language. Sally is asked to give lectures about the Games and her training methods at various events, both in the UK and abroad, and over the years many dog trainers have adapted their training methods and incorporated various aspects of the Dog Games training programme.
Sally has a very strong belief that dogs and handlers should be trained using kind positive methods, and that aversion techniques and negative reinforcement can have a profoundly damaging effect not only on the dog but its relationship with its owners. "Dog owners need to learn how to be Team Leaders - bringing out the best qualities and attributes of both their dog and themselves, so that both parts of the Team grow to love and respect each others needs".
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