Laura’s Resume


Credentials Related to Dog Training and Pet Tracking


Life-long dog-lover and guardian with:

certification as a CPDT-KA (“Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed”) from the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers.

• experience in positive training, behavior modification (especially anxiety and reactivity), tracking (human and animal) training, and fostering rescue dogs.

• experience with private obedience and behavior modification clients.

• experience in and a continuing commitment to volunteering with the Washington Humane Society (now called the Humane Rescue Alliance), initially in training and later in tracking.

experience pet tracking and training tracking dogs with professional pet tracker Sam Connelly of Pure Gold Pet Tracking, as well as pet tracking with my own tracking dog.


Individual obedience training and behavior modification beginning in 2009 with 6 months of fostering (live-in, constant interaction with) a year-old pit bull. She learned dozens of commands and other words in English and French. Helped her gain discipline and impulse control to prepare her for adoption.

Ten years of continuous obedience training, seven of behavior modification (for dog-dog reactivity), and four of tracking training with Leah, my own adopted dog. In addition to the requirements of her tracking job (including continuous training), Leah knew dozens of commands and over 100 words (/ phrases / names, etc.).  Presently training Seamus, the dog I adopted from Mastiff Rescue of Virginia in 2019.

Internship with Gwen Podulka and Heather Morris of Spot-On Training, primarily co-teaching group classes. (See “Apprenticeships” section below).

Training dozens of dogs through private lessons, mainly individually but occasionally in pairs, in basic obedience training – including name recognition, touch targeting, recall, loose-leash walking, and other commands (sit, down, stay, watch, settle, leave it, find it, wait, off, etc.) and tricks using positive techniques (clicker training).

Helping with socialization and behavior issues such as crate- and house-training, mouthing, jumping, inappropriate chewing, excessive barking, and resource guarding. Working primarily with dogs who have various forms of anxiety, specific fears/phobias, and reactivity (dog-human as well as dog-dog reactivity, including intra-household aggression).


Assisted on more than a dozen tracks for my missing foster dog.  2010-2012.

Active involvement in searches for other lost dogs, including long-term searches, through starting blogs and Google maps, flyering, conducting internet outreach, and advising.  2011-present.

Tracked missing pets with tracking dog Leah.  2013-2017.



Attended training seminars by, inter alia, Dr. Ian Dunbar, Sue Sternberg, Dr. Sophia Yin, Ken Ramirez.

Participated in a week-long T-Touch Training Seminar.

Took courses on Dog Aggression and the Law; as well as on Companion Animal Massage.



Gwen Podulka, CPDT-KA, and Heather Morris, CPDT-KA, of Spot-On Dog Training. Gained experience by coteaching classes (reactive dog class, puppy manners, adolescent manners, bully breed manners, etc.); helped with private sessions; and supervised puppy playdates.  2012-2014.

Sam Connelly of Pure Gold Pet Tracking. Tracking lost dogs and cats and learning about scent and tracking in general as well as lost pet behavior. 2011-present. Also learned the basics of training tracking dogs through our joint tracking training of my own dog.  2012-present.

© 2016 Helping Hounds LLC