Pamela is a teacher and coach who specializes in helping people understand, communicate with, and train their pet dogs. Her training methodology is compassionate and science-based and focuses on rewarding desired behaviors. Pamela’s approach is also informed by her background in theatre and education. She prioritizes empathy, clear communication, and active participation from both human and canine learners.
Always a keen student of motivation and behavior, Pamela studied electoral politics and acting at UC Berkeley before moving to Chicago to attend graduate school at DePaul and embark on a career as a theatre maker and educator. Although she always loved animals and was fascinated by the way they think, learn, and move, it wasn’t until she adopted her current dog, an intense pit mix named Bea Arfur, that she discovered her passion for “serious” dog training. After completing an apprenticeship with Lisa Collins and Karen Okura at Collins Canine, she opened her own dog training and enrichment business before joining the team at Urban Pooch Training and Fitness Center.
At Urban Pooch, Pamela teaches Levels Obedience, a flexible, progressive training program that moves at the pace of each individual dog-human team. In addition to Obedience, Pamela also teaches Junior Dog for adolescents (4-8 months) and two behavioral specialty classes – Confidence Club, for fearful dogs who shut down when stressed, and Reactive Dog, for those who get “barky-lungy” on leash.
Pamela has her CPDT-KA certification from the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers and is an evaluator for the AKC’s Canine Good Citizen, STAR Puppy, and Tricks programs. A strong believer in continuing education, she has studied with Michael Shikashio, Amy Cook, Nancy Tucker, Sarah Stremming, and Denise Fenzi, and strives to stay curious and current on all approaches to human and canine learning.