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Sarah Blanchette

Born & raised in Ottawa, Sarah Blanchette is the owner of Calm & Collected Canine. Read her story below, or get in touch!

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Sarah’s Story

Sarah has had family dogs for as long as she can remember, but it was not until she got her own dog, a Pit Bull/Mastiff mix named Tony when she was 18 years old that she discovered her true passion and love for dogs. From the day she brought Tony home, she knew that she had a duty to fulfill and immediately started reading and watching videos to train and care for her dog. At around one year old, Tony changed from being a manageable, social pet, to barking and lunging at dogs when on a leash (known as leash reactivity). Sarah decided that she wanted to change this unwanted behaviour, so she attended behaviour modification training with him. It was during these classes that Sarah discovered how amazing, fun, and effective dog training truly is. Sarah worked extremely hard to change the way Tony thinks and acts, and during his transformation, she knew that she wanted to specialize in behaviour modification dog training herself. Tony went through an amazing transformation over the years and is now “calm and collected” on all walks and at home! Now, he is Sarah’s training assistant and together they help rehabilitate other people’s dogs.

Sarah is dedicated to helping other peoples’ dogs live in harmony with their families. She understands how dogs think and what is necessary to change their brain patterns in order to create a more positive state of mind. She even loves to train new puppies so that they don’t develop bad behaviours as they get older. Not only does Sarah love to work with dogs, but she also enjoys working with their owners. She prides herself on being understanding, compassionate, and personable with both the dog(s) and their owner(s). There is something truly special and gratifying about seeing the transformation of a relationship between an owner and their beloved pet.

As a professional dog trainer, Sarah always seeks out the most current dog training methods in the industry. Her ultimate goal is to “Train, Rehabilitate, and Succeed,” and she has a track record of doing just that.

She hopes that she can get to know you and your dog(s) sometime soon!

Sarah Blanchette

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Sophie Sharp

From a young age, Sophie had an interest in dog behaviour and welfare. As a child she would watch videos on all things dogs, especially training, and dream about one day training her own dog. Unfortunately, her six year old sister was bitten across the face by a dog. This experience created a lot of hesitation around dogs in the household. Over time, Sophie and her family worked hard to learn more about canine behaviour so that they could once again enjoy all dogs, but it wasn’t easy. With first hand experience in this type of trauma, Sophie understands what goes into making sure everyone in the household feels safe and confident around dogs.

 Together the family gained enough confidence to eventually adopt a dog of their own, a Bulldog mix named Frankie. With a chance to fulfill her dream of raising a puppy, teaching and learning from Frankie inspired Sophie to further immerse herself in Dog Training.

 Since then Sophie has had the pleasure of apprenticing with Sarah, which has been an incredible learning experience. Sarah has introduced Sophie to all aspects of dog training from basic behavioural theory, to breed specific patterns. Sophie recognizes how critical it is for a trainer to observe all aspects of canine behaviour and health to provide the most accurate and effective action plan towards long term fulfillment. It is important for Sophie to foster harmony between dog and owner. As we all know, dogs are the easy part! Her priority is connecting with each handler and helping them enjoy their dog to the fullest. Sophie can’t wait to help you reach all your training goals!

Sophie Sharp

Shelby Blair

Shelby has had family and hunting dogs her whole life. She originally started out riding and training horses competitively, but everything changed when she got her first competition dog named Tulsa. It wasn’t until then that she truly realized her love for dog training. From the very beginning Shelby knew she had her hands full. Tulsa was the definition of a Working Line German Shepherd. High drive, high energy and high intensity was the only way to describe Tulsa. It was through this high drive that Shelby found her true passion for training intense working breeds. With a keen interest in protection sports and competitive obedience. 

Together Shelby & Tulsa train and compete in IGP, PSA, Dock Diving, Rally Obedience, and CKC Obedience. 

Given Shelby’s goals for Tulsa, and her newest addition Lilith, a female Belgian Malinois, the desire for continued education is unimaginable. Shelby wanted to learn everything and anything she could about learning theory, and how to apply that to dog training.  Shelby continues to expand her knowledge and education through seminars, online courses, and workshops from various trainers using a variety of different training methods.

Shelby’s ultimate goal as a trainer is to help empower owners and their canine partners using clear and consistent communication. It’s Shelby’s belief that that through clear consistent communication, maintaining expectations, understanding genetics and how dogs think that we can improve the relationship with dogs and owners to become something wonderful.

Shelby Blair

Shelby Blair
Shelby Blair

Val Groulx

Val always had a profound love for nature and animals, but when she went to her first obedience class with her family dog, she realized just how much she loved observing and trying to figure out how dogs’ brains work. At only 14 years old, she already knew she would pursue a dog training career as soon as she stepped out of her high school graduation ceremony.

Her family bred their Australian Shepherd and keep one merle female for themselves. Though, when Val saw her dog Chubby come from the litter, it was love at first sight. She knew she had to keep him for herself, so long as she could convince her mom. She promised that she would work hard to give him the best life, her mom agreed and she’s kept her end of the deal and then some.

Years later and Chubby has already helped countless dogs find their confidence. Val has a true passion for helping the dog’s who need her the most, building them up to their full potential. She has dedicated herself to learning all that she can about dogs, so that she can save as many as she can. She believes in second chances for people and dogs and that it’s never too late to put in the work to better your relationship with your dog. As she started her career, she found a love for working with fearful dogs, especially “Potcakes”. Their survivalist instincts can be challenging, but that’s why she’s drawn to them. She loves to see the progress as they discover that the world is not the scary place they once thought it was. Seeing a glimpse of their personality shine through, as she gains their trust and starts to build a relationship with them is truly the best feeling that keeps Val loving what she does.

Val understands how to listen to concerns, offer endless support and caters her approach to the needs of the dog and their families. At the end of the day she wants happy people, happy dogs and happy households. She can’t wait to make the perfect training plan for your family!

Val Groulx

Testimonials

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“I only have positive things to say about Sarah and her training skills and adaptability skills when it comes to dog’s behaviours and how to work with them and correct them. She customizes every session to the dog’s needs and interests and always makes sure everyone (dog included) is on the same page. Teddy and I really enjoyed our sessions with Sarah, and she was very attentive, and helped me solve Teddy’s fears and other little issues I had with him! I would recommend her to anyone, and I am excited to work with her again in the future!”

– Sarah M.

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” Choosing Sarah as a trainer for my 9 month old malamute puppy was the best decision I have made for myself, my dog and our relationship. This was my first dog, and despite doing my research, I found myself overwhelmed with the amount of work I soon learned this dog would need. Her breed is stubborn, but it didn’t help that she was a rescue and so I don’t know what the first 9 months of her life entailed. We did private lessons with Sarah who was so patient with both of us. The biggest thing Sarah taught me was how to effectively communicate with my dog what I expected of her. Within a few short weeks, she was no longer pulling on leash towards other dogs, she was no longer food guarding with humans (and doing significantly better around other animals) and most importantly has learned confidence – which has allowed her to be significantly less anxious when I’m not around. Overall, I have the best relationship with my dog, now that we have a solid base I know there’s nothing we couldn’t accomplish together, and I couldn’t thank Sarah enough for that.”

– Marissa L.

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“After numerous attempts at trying to find help for my dog reactive girl, Athena, and being told countless times that there’s no hope.. I found Sarah. Sarah helped me understand why my dog behaves the way she does and how I should be reacting to it. Sarah began training me, because it isn’t always the dog who needs training..most times it is the owners too. Sarah was able to introduce me to different tools to see which Athena responded to the best, tools I wouldn’t have used otherwise. She gave me the confidence to advocate for my dog and know how to respond to different scenarios appropriately. I am forever thankful for the training, support, and knowledge passed onto me from Sarah, because of her Athena and I have continued on with more intensive training and will continue to do so to keep her mind in a healthy and happy state! Thank you Sarah, for helping me and Athena start the journey into a happy and healthy life!”

– Morgan M.

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” Our experience with Sarah has been genuinely life changing. We decided to sign up to six weeks of training with Sarah a few months after we had finished basic obedience training with our husky. While our dog has a beautiful temperament, she is super willful and we were struggling to get her to come, walk nicely on lead and to obey commands (after she had decided she was no longer interested and ESPECIALLY if other dogs were around – forget it). Through the training program, Sarah took the time to understand our dog and to teach us the tools we needed to create solid boundaries and strong communication. Our dog now sits calmly on place while we cook and eat, knows that downtime means relaxing, listens and obeys commands (even when she would prefer to be investigating another dog/smell/noise/treat) and walks by our side on leash. Our dog boarded with Sarah when we went on holiday for two weeks. We both felt so comfortable leaving her in Sarah’s hands, as our dog is totally bonded to her and loves to spend time and learn with her. Sarah sent us daily updates and went above and beyond to train our dog with the e-collar, taking the time to adapt her approach to best suit our dog and taking her on long walks and even for activities to find out how to best reward her for all her learning. The result has been completely life changing, our dog comes when called – even when there are other dogs around and she would much prefer to keep playing. It means we can trust her off leash, completely changing our weekends and relationship with her for the better. We can’t recommend Sarah highly enough, and our dog certainly couldn’t love her more.“

 – Clare

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” We sought help from Sarah about a week after we adopted our dog Bronson. Bronson was a stray in Manitoba. He was very reactive to dogs while on leash, he would pull for the entire walk and would bark and lunge at every squirrel or rabbit we saw. We were quickly overwhelmed with his behaviours. Sarah provided us with tools and guidance. She was patient and understanding, and always went above and beyond. Today, a year after we’ve adopted Bronson, we are able to walk past dogs without him reacting, he heels when walking and has also made a lot of progress with squirrels. Sarah gave us the tools to become confident dog owners.”

– Michelle M.

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"Knowing our guy Gus and his challenges, we were quite nervous about having him spend time away from us at his board and train. But from day one, our concerns were wiped away. Sarah made the transition as easy as possible for us. While all that was very important, it paled in comparison to the work she did with Gus. Sarah put in so much time and energy learning how best to communicate with him, and trust me that is saying a lot (basenji attitude). Sharing that knowledge with us has been invaluable. Upon returning home, Sarah set us up with a solid plan and helped us tremendously with establishing new boundaries. Gus is a much more fulfilled and respectful dog because of Sarah. Thank you, Sarah!"

– Grace & Sarah

My Clients