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WOOHOO! YOU FOUND ME.
Hey, I’m Justine.
SO wonderful to (kinda) meet you - and thank you for checking out my site.
A quick bit about me - so that you know who's behind all this Family Dog stuff...
I'm a yoga–loving Brit, who lives just outside NYC with my 2 teen kids and 2 polar-opposite dogs: a sweet, softy senior Aussie-mix and a 12lb little monkey of a terror-mix (YES! You read that right!)
SO, HOW DID I GET HERE?
I was the kid who begged for a dog as soon as I could talk, but didn't get one until the grand old age of 29.
Not sure I could have loved 'Riley' ANY more, but after being riddled with health and behavior issues - I couldn't save him.
My heart broke into a million pieces.
I decided to ditch my pretty cool career as a TV producer/director for Nickelodeon, VH1, and MTV and trade it in for grubby jeans and treat-filled pockets.
Four years and one dog later, the kids came along, and my world was rocked again!
It took all of a millisecond to figure out training dogs WITH KIDS in tow was NOTHING LIKE doing it kid-free. Having taught training classes for years at this point, it was clear that parents desperately needed a different kind of help that wasn't being offered ANYWHERE… so I started the Family Dog.
The company quickly blossomed; from offering in-home training to later creating online programs for families worldwide, and now, teaching dog trainers to coach families in their own communities.
My goal is to help families EVERYWHERE live happily and safely with their dogs — and have fun doing it.
And the reason I ABSOLUTELY LOVE working with families?
Parents have KIDS already - so, when you relate pup-raising to kid-raising, they have SO much parenting experience to pull from - and they can knock it out of the park!
They intrinsically know that they need to give their new dog patience, protection, and guidance on how to be successful in their new family life — because it's exactly what they're doing right now with their kids 🙂
I'm a Pro member of the APDT and CPDT–KA certified.
But I'm NEVER satisfied and ALWAYS striving to be better. Connected with the biggest players in the industry, I'm constantly educating myself to make my techniques better and both my family clients' and Pros' lives easier.
I've been training dogs for 20 years now. Since 2009 it's been "families only", laser–focusing on developing the most effective, efficient, and truly family-friendly training techniques.
In recent years, I've spoken at the following conferences in the US and UK, run workshops and webinars, coaching trainers worldwide on how to work specifically with families:
- Victoria Stilwell's Dog Bite Prevention Conference,
- Hosted a 2-day workshop for Jean Donaldson's Academy.
In 2015, The Family Dog also launched Stop The 77, an online dog safety campaign for families. Our mission is to educate parents and their kids everywhere on how to live safely and happily with the dogs they know and love AND lower the number of dog bites to children.