Animal Behavior College Reviews & Success Stories

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Tammy Mills

I have ALWAYS loved animals. As a kid, I drove my parents crazy bringing home every stray dog around and constantly begging for my own horse. I spent hours teaching my dogs tricks and just hanging out with my animals. Once I was married my husband pretty much accepted the fact that if he married me he was getting me plus at least a dog or two. I've known my whole life that I wanted a career doing something with animals but never really had the opportunity to pursue that dream. I started working in the corporate world over 25 years ago and have never been truly happy with my career path. Like a lot of people, I looked forward to Fridays and payday but knew that I had not found my "passion" in life.

About four years ago, after the death of my Bassett Hound of 11 years, I acquired a new Cocker Spaniel puppy. I started working with a trainer who was absolutely wonderful and as I watched her "loving and enjoying" her career, she inspired me. I decided to get a second puppy and started training them both. During that time I had also signed up as a volunteer with the local shelter and my love and passion for dogs seemed to grow as I saw how many were abandoned and given up without good reason. I decided to step out of my comfort zone and started researching dog training schools.

ABC caught my eye because of their positive approach and the fact that I could take my classes while still working at my full time job. I called them to get more information and was pleased with all the answers they gave me. I signed up and jumped in head first! I enjoyed my classes from day one. After each test, I couldn’t wait to move on to the next chapter. My experience with my mentor trainer was great. She taught me a lot and shared lots of useful info with me along the way. I'm confident that she and l will continue to keep in touch. I graduated with Honors thanks to her and the wonderful staff at ABC who encouraged me along the way. I started working part time at PetCo immediately and am also teaching classes and private lessons on my own. I plan, in the near future, to make dog training my full time career. Thank you ABC for helping me to accomplish my goals and work toward achieving my life-long dreams.


Michelle Hall
Daycare Provider and Owner of "Pawsitive K-9 Academy"

My name is Michelle Hall, and I have always been an animal lover ever since I can remember. There was never a time when I was growing up that I didn’t have a dog. I can remember playing with them all the time. I don’t recall doing much with training them at that time but I just remember having so much fun with them. As an adult I have owned several breeds of dogs. Right now I own a Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier (Savanah) and I am fostering a Shepherd/Lab mix (Wally), and am in the process of adopting him soon. Since the passing of my Shepherd/Chow mix due to cancer in September, 2007 at the age of 8 ½ years, I have registered with several rescues in my area fostering dogs and training them to make them more adoptable.

When I got my Wheaten Terrier about 1 ½ years ago, I immediately found a very reputable trainer in my area. I started out with a couple of private lessons then changed over to group classes. I enjoyed it so much that I knew I wanted to pursue a career in dog training and problem behaviors. I did a search on the internet and found a whole slew of dog training schools. Most of them didn’t amount to anything worth looking into. When I came across Animal Behavior College I knew this was the school for me.

It took me a couple of weeks to decide to enroll in the school. I am a very busy person (as everyone is these days), and I run a daycare out of my home. I have very little time to myself as I also have a 2 year old. I thought this college would be great for me because my time is very limited. It worked out great doing my studies during the children’s nap time and after my little guy went to bed at night. The externship and my volunteer work was my favorite part of this program. All of the dogs that I worked with during my volunteer work at the shelter have been adopted.

After applying all of the things I learned from ABC and from Savanah’s trainer I am happy to tell everyone that Savanah passed her CGC/TDI in June, 2007. I was so proud. I look forward to applying what I have learned through ABC to my clients and their dogs, and working with people and helping them to make their dogs an enjoyable part of their family. I have started my own business, Pawsitive K-9 Academy. You can visit my website at

I would recommend this college to anyone that was interested in becoming a dog trainer. My program manager was the best, very helpful and patient.

Thank you ABC for helping me to fulfill my dream and be happy with my new career!


Amber Johnson
Veterinary Technician

I was looking for something a little more in my life and I had been thinking about dog training. When I came across ABC and thought, 'This is perfect!' ABC was a great place to learn. The schedule was flexible and I learned a lot in the intensive curriculum. I am currently in school for Veterinary Technology, and I will graduate in May 2008. I plan on working in a clinic for a while and doing some training on the side. I will eventually open my own boarding facility, training center and rescue. Thank you ABC for giving me the chance to start the career I've always dreamed of!


Deborah Muise
Proposal Writer and Owner of "The Idle Dog"

I was very influenced by Cesar Milan when his program began, and adopted many of his techniques with my 2 cavaliers. I also became aware of other methods available to dog trainers, and decided to study everything I could find. When I found myself unemployed for the first time, I shopped for a dog training learning experience that would provide the best education, and decided that ABC would fit the bill. My husband and I also take care of a 5 year old male Maltese regularly. I have had a border collie, a mini wire-haired dachshund, and a pit bull mix, a cherry headed conure, and many tolerant cats.

I chose ABC because of the hand-on requirements of their program. I knew that an education in dog training would mean very little if it was entirely academic. ABC's program is very comprehensive and well organized. The lessons are in logical order. The best part was the schedule since I knew ahead of time when each chapter test would be required. That schedule kept me slowly headed toward completion and my goal of certification as a dog trainer. I especially liked the externship at a local no-kill shelter, and my mentor sessions with an experienced dog trainer. I learned a tremendous amount just by watching and listening to her, and even though my required time at the shelter is over, I still volunteer there once a week.

I have several ideas for dog-related businesses. My immediate plans are to expand my little dog day care business in my home, and to offer dog training services on a private, issue-solving basis for people who have already requested my services. I plan to advertise locally.

I think animals, especially dogs, have a strong, undeniable attachment to humans. The relationship between owner and dog is very emotional and vitally close. Humans get something they need very much from their relationships with their dogs. I don't think this phenomenon is fully understood, but I recognize its existence. I want to contribute to a greater understanding of the needs and motivations of the domestic dog, to improve the human - dog bond.


Ann King
Vet Practice Manager and Owner of "CompliantK9"

Although I have been known among friends as 'the dog lady' for 20 years, I didn't officially pursue my passion of all things dog until relatively recently when I went to re-enter the workforce as a technology marketing professional and found I just couldn't conjure up any excitement about it. At age 40, I felt I owed it to myself and my family to spend my time in a capacity that not only brought me joy, but also put me in a position to help others. I have always trained my own dogs, as well as the dogs of my friends, and I've always been active with my local shelters and rescues. I stumbled across the Animal Behavior College website and within minutes of perusing the content had an epiphany about my destiny - I would combine my passion for dogs with my natural people skills and actually get paid for doing something I love! I chose to enroll in the ABC program because it taught a method of training I myself had used with my own dogs, and it provided a concise and logical framework that would serve as an excellent foundation for launching my own training business. My experience with the program was wonderful - the pace was excellent, the content was presented in an interesting fashion, and I had access to 'real people' if I needed them. Toward the end of my certification, I felt confident enough to launch my training business 'CompliantK9' and was able to hit the ground running. It's been a fantastic journey. Thank you ABC!


Maureen Warren
Avid Volunteer, Foster Mom and Dog Trainer

In April of 1991, I adopted my first dog, Brandy. She turned 16 years old this past April. In 2002 my husband Ron was diagnosed with cancer. We decided to get a puppy when we found out the news. We adopted our second dog, Rascal (a boxer mix). Not only did Rascal comfort Ron through his cancer but she also made Brandy young again.

In 2004 I began volunteering with a German Shepherd rescue. Ron and I became a foster for the first time with a three month old German Shepherd, Jake. I knew the day I picked him up I was going to adopt him. He had many anxiety issues. I also began volunteering with BFPA in 2004. I got a call from a friend in September of 2004 who said that a Rottweiler was surrendered after being on a tie-out for 6 years. We took him to the vet for the first time in his life. His collar was embedded into his neck so we had to cut the collar off. His name is Kane and today he weights 135 pounds. Of course we had to find Kane a roommate. We were going to try to foster so Kane could have a playmate and of course we ended up adopting a cattle dog that is two years old named Avery.

In April of 2004 there was a puppy mill bust in Sanford, NC. A group from ALDF (Animal League Defense Fund) came and seized 350 dogs. Ron and I heard about this and began volunteering with ALDF. A Real Estate company donated a warehouse so ALDF could house all the dogs that were seized. It was named “Halls of Hope.” Ron and I started volunteering the first weekend the dogs were there. It was the most overwhelming feeling I ever had in my life. Without hesitation Ron and I began to help in whatever area we could. Each weekend after the dogs settled in, you could tell they began to feel somewhat at ease. The case is still in appeals and all the dogs are in limbo in foster homes. We have a beautiful dog (Bulldog/Boxer mix) named Katie who we are currently fostering.

I’ve been in the corporate world for 27 yrs now and in April of 2004 I decided to train dogs. I found ABC on-line in my search. The best part of ABC’s program was the externship. What I plan on doing now is working with the Wake County Animal Shelter to help them keep their return rate down of dogs that have been adopted. I have offered to them on a volunteer basis to go to adopter’s homes if they need leadership on basic training with their new addition so they don’t feel overwhelmed and think they have to return the dog to the shelter. My long-term goal is to have my own business training dogs.


Jessica Wheatcraft
Psychologist and Dog Trainer

My love affair with dogs began at a very young age, and I spent a lot of my free time as a child playing with the family dogs in our backyard. I realized I had a knack for working with dogs and when I was 11 years old I began offering dog walking services to the neighbors. I charged $0.10 per half hour because I didn’t know what to really charge and all I wanted to do was spend time with more dogs anyways! When I reached my senior year in high school I decided to do my required volunteer hours at the local shelter. It was there I saw the awful truth about pet over-population, and I became determined to try and help make a difference for the wonderful dogs that simply needed a second chance. I started volunteering at the adoption events on weekends, helping find new homes for several dogs.

I moved to San Diego to pursue a degree in Psychology and after I got settled in I began searching for a dog of my own to adopt. After months of searching I found a wonderful pit bull named Harley who stole my heart the moment I met her. I adopted her on the spot. Harley’s rough background caused her to have a lot of anxiety and I realized it would be a good idea to work with a professional trainer to get her started on the right track. I was referred to Nan Arthur, a positive reinforcement clicker trainer with years of experience. Harley and I loved doing clicker training and she made a complete turn around.

Later that year I began volunteering for Pit Bull Rescue San Diego, doing everything from fundraising to fostering. It was then that it dawned on me that I would be able to save the lives of more dogs by becoming a dog trainer because I would be helping to prevent the problems that landed them in the shelter in the first place. I contacted Nan Arthur and discussed my options. She recommended Animal Behavior College as the way to go to get my certification. I loved the flexibility of the program and that it focused on positive reinforcement training. When the externship portion came around I specifically requested to work with Nan and was thrilled when I was paired up with her. I learned so much by applying my learned skills to real life situations such as helping out with her group classes and attending private lessons with her.

I was shocked when Nan asked me to work for her before I even graduated! Another fabulous opportunity came a few weeks later when Pit Bull Rescue San Diego asked me to join their board team as their behaviorist/trainer. I jumped right in and started a free foster obedience class for all the dogs in our program so they would have a better chance at being adopted. I love being a dog trainer and I wake up every day knowing I am doing what I love most, and to me that’s priceless.


Richard Hörst
UPS Driver and Owner of "Harmony Mountain Retrievers"

I am an avid bird hunter possessing a desire to train retrievers for clients. Once I made the decision to do this, I sought a dog training certification program that focused not only on common obedience training using positive methods, but also one that would offer problem solving solutions. ABC was the answer to my search. I have lived with retrievers most of my adult life and am well aware of the drive behind the retrieving breeds.

ABC has motivated me to work toward titling my own dogs, thereby proving my ability to do the same for clients. In just a few hunt tests, my standard poodle and I are ½-way to her North American Hunting and Retrieving title and ¾-way to her AKC hunting title.


Terrilynn Palumbo
Dental Assistant and Owner of “Sinopa Shiba Dog Training and Canine Massage”

Animal Behavior College has been a wonderful way to get me started on the right track to becoming an animal trainer. I researched many dog training schools and found ABC to be very affordable. Additionally, the program contains the most current techniques to best educate any motivated potential student in the positive motivation technique of dog training.

I found the staff of ABC to be knowledgeable about all aspects of the program. They were all very supportive of me while in the program. They were easily accessible to answer questions or talk with me about concerns I had about the different stages of the program.

As a result of graduating from ABC, I have begun my own business. Eventually, I hope to be able to run my business full-time so that I may leave my current position as a dental assistant in a dental office.

I am a recent graduate of DeSales University with a dual degree with honors in Social Work and Psychology and have been able to blend both my loves of working with people and their pets to form my new business. ABC has given me both the training tools and business tools to help make my business successful. Thanks to ABC for a wonderful experience.


Erin Camara
Administrative Assistant

I have grown up with animals my whole life. I have been an Administrative Assistant for 22 years. In the last few years I realized that I was tired of the corporate world. I wanted to do something that I love. I have heard people once in awhile say “I love my job” and I thought, "I want to be able to say that." I started thinking about the things that I like and dogs came to mind. I have always loved animals, especially dogs, so why not do something that I love? ABC jumped out at me because of the flexibility of doing it on your own time. I looked around and did not see many programs that were this in depth and also affordable.

This course has really helped me grow as a person, especially the volunteer portion of the program. When I found out I had to work with shelter dogs, I thought there is no way I can do that. I can’t even go into a pet store without tearing up. Somehow I found that inner strength and knew that what I was doing was going to help these dogs find a good home. It was a very rewarding experience. My dream is to one day walk into a shelter and take every dog with me!

ABC has really helped me with my own dogs as well. This is my 5 year old, Pomeranian/Finnish Spitz mix, Tawnee and my new 5 month old Pomeranian puppy, Peaches.

Finding your passion is a gift! I plan to continue my education in this field by attending workshops and would like to take more courses through ABC if offered.

Thanks ABC for this life changing experience!


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