Our team

Although all our instructors are volunteers, many of them are also professional canine trainers. Our instructors have a range of nationally and internationally recognised professional accreditations, from such institutions as:

We also have a comprehensive two-year aspiring instructor program, which is run in-house by our head instructor.


Michele has had poodles in her life since she was 6 years old and currently has two standards, Taj and Stella. Michele and Taj were awarded CBS Team of the Year in 2013 and have a Canine Life and Social Skills (CLASS) program PhD title.

Michele is both an instructor with CBS and a student with Taj in the Diamond class. She has a Bachelor of Education, a Certificate II in Animal Studies and is a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers Australia. She is the Registrar of a Court and spends her spare time as a CBS volunteer and in training with Taj.


Mel has always had a love for animals and a particular passion for dogs. Mel has two Labrador Retrievers, Max and Finn. She has taken both her dogs through courses at Adelaide Pet Dog Training and Canine Behavioural School. In training Max and Finn, she has seen first-hand what positive reinforcement can achieve and is committed to helping others to achieve the same results.

Mel has completed a Certificate II in Animal Studies at TAFE. Mel’s other passion (and full time job) is politics, where positive reinforcement is unfortunately not always so effective!


Sarah was first introduced to positive reinforcement training in 2005 when she enrolled her pug/cavalier cross, Portia, into a puppy pre-school with Bev Clark at the Norwood Veterinary Clinic. Through training her ‘special needs’ Australian bulldog Hef, who joined the family in January 2009, Sarah has seen firsthand the power of using positive reinforcement training methods in behaviour modification.

Sarah enjoyed the training so much that she started volunteering at Canine Behavioural School as an assistant instructor at the end of 2009 and started taking classes as a fully-fledged instructor in mid-2011. Sarah also volunteered at the RSPCA whilst she was studying at university.


Dave was introduced to positive dog training soon after Maple Labrador came into his life. Maple was exuberant at first and is still as enthusiastic as ever. Dave has found training Maple a great way to have fun with a dog and it doesn’t feel like work.

He and Maple spend as much time as possible enjoying the outdoors – the beach on the weekend and watching the sunrise over the city from Mount Osmond most mornings. When he’s not training Maple, Dave works as an accountant. He is currently a relief instructor at CBS.


Susanne is a Delta Society Australia accredited Canine Good Citizen Instructor, holds a Certificate IV in Companion Animal Services, is a Professional Member of the Delta Institute and the Pet Professional Guild of Australia and is a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers Australia. Susanne had a very difficult Rottweiler, Mila, who was rehabilitated through force-free training. This started Susanne on her journey to help other owners train and understand their dogs through humane and scientifically-based methods. Piper (pictured) has gained her Canine Good Citizen award through the Delta Society.

Susanne runs weekly puppy pre-school at Payneham, Walkerville and Stephen Terrace veterinary clinics. She also teaches at CBS on Monday nights and Sunday mornings with Adelaide Pet Dog Training. On Saturday mornings she runs dog-reactive classes at Unity Park, Pooraka. She also offers private behavioural consultations and one-on-one classes as part of her professional dog training services.


Deb has studied canine behaviour extensively, attaining a Diploma in Dog Training and Behaviour Consulting and another in Animal Behaviour Science and Technology (with distinction) from the Companion Animal Sciences Institute. She holds a Certificate IV in Dog Behavioural Training from the Delta Society Australia and the UK based Competency Assessment CAP 2 qualification (with distinction) and has recently earned the title of Professional Canine Behaviour Consultant through the Pet Professional Accreditation Board.

Recently Deb has been welcomed to the board of the Pet Professional Guild (PPG) and is responsible for the Pet Professional Guild Australia and PPG chapters as they develop in the southern hemisphere. She also serves on the board of Doggone Safe, the Companion Animal Sciences Institute and the Association of Animal Behaviour Professionals. Deb is a committee member of the RSPCA SA ‘Lead by Example’ campaign, is on the PPG steering committee and chairs the Companion Dog Assessment Program Committee for PPG. In 2013 Deb won the Trainer of the Year and Susan Wilkins Achievement Awards from the Association of Pet Dog Trainers Australia.

Deb has served as Head Instructor of CBS for seven of the last eight years and enjoys teaching the aspiring instructors, helping to develop new programs for CBS and watching both the School and its students grow in knowledge of dogs and how to care for them. She shares her life with husband Arnold, Mace, the Bouvier des Flandres and the latest addition to the family – Roux, a rescue Brussels Griffon.

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Sarah has always been surrounded by animals including dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, chickens and ducks and from a very young age wanted to work with animals. Sarah began by doing work experience and becoming an assistant with Adelaide Pet Dog Training in late 2009 and early 2010. After deciding to develop her knowledge and dog training skills further Sarah started assisting at CBS in late 2011. Sarah would especially like to be able to help people understand their dogs’ behaviour and help them form a strong bond with their pet.


Ilona Wright is one of the founding members of Canine Behavioural School, and with 40 years instructing behind her, is one of our most experienced instructors. These days her interests lie in taking classes for dogs with issues, where the class content is tailored to the dog/guardian needs; and the more advanced work of Dances With Dogs (DWD) which is fundamentally obedience with attitude choreographed to music.


Amanda’s interest in how dogs think and communicate was brought on when caring for her senior collie and her disabled collie, as well as her general love for dogs. After researching dog training and behaviour and reading a number of books, she wanted to gain a better understanding of the benefits of positive reward training. This all led her to the Canine Behavioural School, so when she brought home her new pup she enrolled him at CBS.

Since that day her pup continues to learn good manners and excellent socialising skills, and has now reached diamond class. One of the benefits of his training is that Amanda is also learning how his mind works, which encouraged her to become an instructor at CBS.

Amanda is currently studying for her Dog Behaviour Consulting Diploma with DogNostics Career College. She has completed a Diploma in Canine Behavior Science and Technology at the Companion Animal Science Institute and the Puppy Start Right Instructor’s Course with the Karen Pryor Academy. Amanda is also a member of Pet Professional Guild Australia and the Association of Pet Dog Trainers. Her ambition is to assist people to learn and understand about their dogs or any animal they have, so they too can have the love and companionship that Amanda has had with her dogs.

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Adam has been around dogs for most of his life and has found a natural affinity with them and loves the bond that humans and dogs can achieve. After spending five years working and travelling in the UK & Europe and living in a cramped apartment with a strict ‘no pets’ policy, a dog was one of the first things on his list after returning to Adelaide. ‘Riga’ a Hungarian Vizsla joined the family in 2009 followed by ‘Lula’ a German Short Haired Pointer in 2010.

Adam joined CBS in 2009 as a student to ensure his dogs were well trained and joined the training team in late 2010. His particular interest is in agility and he enjoys seeing both pet and guardian succeed in new challenges. He is also a member of the Hungarian Vizsla Club of SA. Adam is an accountant but sheds the brown cardigan image to pursue his other hobby of scuba diving with an aim to cage dive with Great White Sharks in Port Lincoln.


Sharon has been in the pet industry for over ten years. In the last three years she has taken an interest in animal behaviour and positive reinforcement training.

Sharon is currently studying a Certificate IV in Animal Management through Delta. She also has an interest in animal welfare. Sharon owns two mini Schnauzers named Blitzen and Ava, who have both obtained their Delta Canine Good Citizen Award. Ava has also obtained an Advanced Trick Training title and Blitzen currently holds a Novice title.

Sharon looks forward to completing her studies. She is currently an Aspiring Instructor at CBS. She loves positive reinforcement training and helping guide owners and their fur kids through their training.


Steph was first introduced to positive reinforcement training while doing work experience for her animal studies course. She experienced firsthand such great results with her Staffy x, Buddy, that she was keen to further her knowledge and understanding of this fantastic method of training.

Buddy came into Steph’s life about three and a half years ago as a nine month old puppy. Buddy was full of energy and enthusiasm, but also quite undisciplined. Buddy has since come a long way using positive reinforcement methods, he has successfully completed the bronze and silver classes at CBS and Steph is now looking to complete the Gold and Diamond classes with him in 2016.

Steph has had experience in doggy day care and interned for six months with a force free trainer. She has completed Certificates I and II in Animal Studies and will soon be working towards a Certificate IV in Companion Animal Services, all through Animals on Course. She has also attained the Canine Training Technician accreditation through the Pet Professional Accreditation Board.

Steph enjoys assisting with classes and is currently training as an aspiring instructor at CBS with the intention of taking her own classes in the near future.

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Tracey began her dog-training journey 11 years ago when she picked up a very special Aussie Shepherd puppy called Fynn. She is very grateful to Mim Edwards of Adelaide Pet Dog Training, who taught her how to teach Fynn to become an extraordinary dog and, more importantly, created the desire to study and learn as much as possible about force-free training, dog behaviour and human-dog relationships.

Tracey is continuing her studies through the Karen Pryor Academy and thoroughly enjoying the opportunity to help people learn about dogs, and give them the skills to teach their dogs to become the wonderful companions they had envisioned.

Tracey lives with three Aussie Shepherds who are her constant companions and provide her and her family with great pleasure and amusement. She is an advocate for training with joy, with play and appreciation of the unique bonds that can be created.


After years of owning cats, Vicki’s family finally decided it was a good time to bring a dog into their lives. As a child, she was taught to use a choke chain and corrections to train her Labradors, but now wanted to find a kinder method of teaching their puppy and the family how to learn to live happily together. Luckily, she found Adelaide Pet Dog Training and CBS. Raffa, a Lagotto Romognolo, is now a much-loved member of the family (although the cat still has reservations!). He has achieved his Diamond class certificate and together Vicki and Raffa won Team of the Year in 2014.

Vicki is currently an assistant trainer and involved in CBS’s aspiring trainer program. She is a qualified teacher and librarian and is now working towards gaining qualifications in dog behaviour and training with Dognostics Career College. She is a member of the Pet Professional Guild and is passionate about teaching people how to use force-free training to build a positive relationship with their dogs.

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Felice completed her Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing in 2011 and worked across South Australia and Victoria before settling in Adelaide. She has a keen interest in animal behaviour and positive reinforcement training and recently completed the Delta Institute’s Certificate IV in Companion Animal Services. Felice owns an adopted Golden Retriever, Bella, who has recently obtained her B.A. for dogs through the C.L.A.S.S program.

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Having always had a menagerie of animals (currently including her dogs Monty, the border collie cross and Alaska, the blue heeler cross), Kate has decided to follow her passion and move into dog training. Kate has completed the Delta Institute’s Certificate IV in Companion Animal Services and the Canine Training Technician – Accredited through the Pet Professional Accreditation Board. She is currently studying a Dog Behaviour Diploma with Dognostics and is completing the Professional Canine Trainer also through PPAB. She also has a Bachelor of Arts in Politics and a Graduate Diploma in Journalism. She loves seeing the difference force-free training can make to the lives of dogs and their guardians. In a previous life, Kate has been a police officer and government media adviser but now works as the manager of a government website and information service. In her spare time, she does agility with Alaska, plays basketball and plays in a brass band.

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