About Natalie

Thank you for visiting my website. I’m located in Urbana, IL and I’m self employed – this is my full time job. My goal in life is to help dogs and the people who love them.

From a young age I’ve had an interest in animal behavior and have been entrusted with the care of all sorts of different pets while their families were away for work or travel. I graduated from the University of Illinois in 2010 with a bachelor’s in Animal Science and a concentration in Psychology. Additionally I took part in many extracurricular activities that allowed me to experience handling and training different species of animals, including dog training seminars, fish behavior research, and various volunteer work (including work with horses and elephants).

I then completed my dog training certification through Animal Behavior College,  and I am currently a mentor trainer for Animal Behavior College as well as CATCH dog training academy. I am certified as a Family Dog Mediator and I am also certified through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers. I have also completed the Aggression in Dogs Master Course. There’s always more to learn about animal behavior and I make sure my schedule and budget allow for continuing education because it is so important.

During and after college I worked at Prairieland Feeds, a locally owned pet store. I worked my way up from Sales Associate to General Manager and at the same time made time to pet sit and meet with clients in their homes for private dog training lessons.

For several years I’ve trained dogs at the Champaign County Humane Society, first as a volunteer, and then for many years as the Animal Behavior Specialist and Volunteer Coordinator.  I resigned from the shelter in September 2018 to work for myself full-time, but I continue my relationship with the organization as a volunteer. I also continue to teach the CCHS group dog training classes held at Prairieland Feeds. Pets, volunteers, and clients have taught me so much over the years, and I continue to learn valuable lessons from experiences with them.

Through college courses, mentoring, internships, workshops, volunteer work, certification courses, conferences, working at the shelter, volunteering at other shelters, and pet sitting a wide assortment of individuals of all different species, I have gained years of valuable experience. I’ve worked with people and pets from all walks of life and of course all have their own unique personalities and individual needs. There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to behavior, and I love creative problem solving.

I also have a strong background in customer service and firmly believe that all people should be treated with respect. My teaching style reflects this and I am often described as a ‘people person’. My goal is to set my clients and their pets up for success, and then cheer on those successes and share in their joy.

Please contact me for more information, I am here to help you.
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