Lisadawn Shackleford’s dog-training company, Country Canine Care, is the latest Comox Valley training company to receive AnimalKind accreditation. Photo supplied.

Lisadawn Shackleford’s dog-training company, Country Canine Care, is the latest Comox Valley training company to receive AnimalKind accreditation. Photo supplied.

Retired nurse from Union Bay becomes a BC SPCA-accredited dog trainer

In 2018, after decades of nursing, Lisadawn Shackleford’s passion for dogs led her to found Country Canine Care while still working part-time as a critical care RN.

Fast forward to today, now retired from nursing, Shackleford is dedicated full-time to running Country Canine Care and providing humane, science-based dog training services. Her company has now been recognized with the BC SPCA’s AnimalKind accreditation.

At Country Canine Care, Shackleford combines her nursing experience and dog training expertise, to help people and their dogs.

“As a career teacher of patients and families, and now guardians and their dogs, I thrive on watching people learn, succeed and reach goals in both health and dog training,” says Shackleford, whose services centre on ensuring good dog welfare and supporting the human-animal bond.

“I’m eager to continue working with dogs and guardians to build a positive bond and connection using fun, force-free training methods.”

The BC SPCA created the AnimalKind program to recognize companies for their commitment to promoting animal welfare and provide information to dog guardians looking for skilled trainers who use science-based, humane training methods.

Dog training is unregulated in B.C., making dog welfare more relevant for the industry, something dog trainers in the Comox region understand.

“The community of BC SPCA’s AnimalKind accredited trainers has doubled in the last year,” said Nicole Fenwick, manager, research and standards for the BC SPCA. “The Comox Valley is transforming into a region where science-based dog training is becoming the norm, which positively affects dog welfare. We are thankful to Country Canine Care, along with K9 Kind Dog Training, Go Dog Go! Dog Training, and Wild at Heart for joining the AnimalKind community of dog trainers who are committed to using effective, humane training methods instead of outdated techniques that cause fear and pain to dogs.”

Shackleford understands the value of the AnimalKind program.

“I look forward to the day that the dog training industry is fully regulated,” she said. “I believe the AnimalKind program is a vital part of increasing public awareness surrounding positive reinforcement, science-based and aversive-free options to dog training. There is no place for dominance and fear when it comes to the welfare of our canine family members. I’m honoured and proud to be a newly accredited AnimalKind trainer.”

The BC SPCA launched the first set of AnimalKind standards – for wildlife and rodent control companies – in 2018. Through a partnership with the UBC Animal Welfare Program, the BC SPCA, Vancouver Foundation, and the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies provided funding to establish the program. AnimalKind standards for dog training – the second set of standards developed, were launched in January 2019.

Learn more about AnimalKind accreditation, what to look for in a trainer, or find a trainer near you at animalkind.ca.

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