About Ariel, Padme & Halligan | FAQs


Ariel has been working with animals since she was a child, and has been professionally training dogs for 5 years. She joined the Pet Professional Guild (PPG) in 2017. She is one of the less than 10 trainers in the US to earn the prestigious title of Professional Canine Trainer (PCT-A) from the Pet Professional Accreditation Board.

The testing process for this credential is extremely rigorous, requiring:

  • letters of recommendation from clients and a veterinarian,
  • 200 logged training hours over the course of no more than 24 months
  • 20 hours of approved continuing education units
  • passing a 100 question written test

Additionally, you must pass a video test, which includes:

  • explaining how to teach basic behaviors and demonstrating different ways of eliciting behavior
  • creating a conditional emotional response
  • and coaching a group

Ariel’s Certifications & Titles

Program Links

Professional Canine Trainer Accredited-PCT-A
Certified Trick Dog Instructor-CDTI
All Star Trainer of the Year (2020)
Canine Conditioning Fitness Coach-CCFC
Stunt Dog Judge (SDJ)
Canine Good Citizen Evaluator-CGC Evaluator
Pet Dog Ambassador Instructor/Assessor
Be a Tree Presenter
Pet CPR and First Aid
Click on a logo to learn more about each organization:



Ariel acquired Padme as a puppy to train as a service dog. Padme began picking up on helpful behaviors very quickly and has come a long way in training. Currently she participates in rally and trick training with hopes of doing agility and stunt dog!

Padme’s Titles

Novice Trick Dog-NTD
Intermediate Trick Dog-ITD
Advanced Trick Dog-ATD
Pet Dog Ambassador Level 4-PDA4
Canine Good Citizen-CGC
20 Tricks 1 Prop-20:1


Halligan was rescued by Ariel in 2014.  He was very ill and needed months of steady vet treatment and care at home.  Ariel nursed him back to health and later began training him to be her service dog.

This process led her to learn more about service dog training and becoming a service dog trainer.

Halligan performs a wide variety of tasks to help Ariel day to day.  They have been a working team since 2015.  Halligan is also Ariel’s demo dog and has earned many titles himself.  The team competed in AKC obedience, rally, agility, and has also competed in Stunt Dog trials.

Halligan’s Titles

Canine Good Citizen-CGC
Community Canine-CGCA
Urban Canine Good Citizen-CGCU
Novice Trick Dog-NTD
Intermediate Trick Dog-ITD
Advanced Trick Dog-ATD
Expert Trick Dog-ETD
Trick Dog Champion-TDCH
AKC Trick Dog Performer_TKP
Novice Stunt Dog-NSD
Open Stunt Dog-OSD
Proven Stunt Dog-PSD
Professional Stunt Dog-SDPro
Rally Novice-RN
AKC Achiever Dog
Beginner Novice (Obedience)-BN
Pet Dog Ambassador Level 3-PDA3


To reward behaviors we like, we mark the behavior with either a click or verbal marker, such as "Yes", and give the dog a treat.  While some dogs like toys, we find the majority of dogs enjoy working for food.

By marking the behavior and offering food, we are using positive reinforcement and building the dog's understanding of what behavior we are looking for, and, therefore, they will be more likely to perform the behavior in the future.  This is the premise of reward-based training.

Simply offering the wrong behavior (i.e., siting when he was asked to lie down) means the situation will be set up again and he will be given another opportunity to perform. If the dog offers the wrong behavior twice in a row, it's best to retract to an easier step in the process (for the previous example, going back to using a hand signal to give the dog a visual representation of what is being asked) or redirect them to something else before going back to the original behavior. There is a vast number of reasons a dog may get it wrong, and it's the human's job to set the dog up for success.

If the dog is exhibiting signs of stress (lip licking, yawning, looking away, tucked tail, hunched body, tightly closed mouth, intense stare, stiff body, piloerection or raised hackles, etc.), we will remove the dog from the environment as quickly and gently as possible. We will then work with you to determine the cause of your dog's stress and how to desensitize your dog to the trigger, and how to manage the situation during that time.

We are proud of the Pet Professional Guild membership! This organization has strong ethical standards and believes pain, force, or fear should NEVER be an option for animals. This organization has tough vetting for potential members to ensure they meet their strict standards.

See above for full list of credentials

To view my PPG membership profile, Click Here

To view my PCT-A credential profile, Click Here

Payment is due at the time of booking to reserve your spot. Payments can be made through credit card, cash (in-person only), or by check by mail. If a check is sent via mail, please be aware that your spot will not be saved until the check is received.

    • For packages, payment for the package is due in full at the time of booking. You have 6 weeks after your first lesson to use a starter package or 4 lesson package. You have 12 weeks after your first lesson to use 8 lesson packages.


    • For single sessions purchased, cancellations must be made 72 hours prior to time of service for a refund. If a cancellation is made less than 72 hours prior to time of service, no refund will be issued.


    • For packages, cancellations are only accepted up to 72 hours AFTER BOOKING for a refund. After 72 hours, no refund will be issued, but a reschedule may be available.


    • Reschedules for package lessons will only be attempted for 2 different occasions. After the second reschedule request, you will forfeit the missed lessons. This is in consideration of other clients who need to schedule sessions. Please note that reschedules cannot be guaranteed. Every effort will be made to reschedule if necessary for your first 2 reschedule requests, but cannot be guaranteed. Please choose your day and time carefully.