The Dogworks Dogwalking and Training
Meet The Team

I'm Karen and I'm the founder and Head Trainer at The Dogworks. Dogs are my world and I've always been around them since I was a small child.  I had my first dog as a teenager - a GSD called Max and have never been without a dog since then, and now live with 3 rescue dogs, Pip, Woody and Jess.
I lived in Spain for many years where I became involved in animal welfare and began my career working with dogs. I volunteered in rescue kennels, fostered dozens of dogs and puppies, and assessed and trained dogs for adoption and rehoming and I was lucky enough to be selected to attend The Dog's Trust International Training Programme in London in 2013.  I came back to Scotland at the beginning of 2015 and set up The Dogworks to provide the best of care and training for local dogs.
I believe that dogs will give more when they're enjoying learning and I only use positive reinforcement or reward based training methods, taking inspiration from the likes of Victoria Stilwell, Karen Pryor, Kathy Sdao and Ian Dunbar to name a few.  I'm always learning and regularly attend workshops and seminars and am currently working towards becoming a Kennel Club Accredited Instructor. I'm a qualified and assessed Member of the Institute of Modern Dog Trainers (No. 201923) and a Full Member of the Pet Professional Guild (No.28141699). I'm proud to be one of the first fully licensed Pet Dog Ambassador Program Instructors/Assesors in Scotland.
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Karen Wallace
IMDT  
PPG
​Dip CanBT
​ADip PPCVPA
Founder & Business Owner
Head Trainer & Canine Behaviour Consultant

Amy joined The Dogworks in 2016 and has extensive experience in looking after and training dogs and has her own rescue dog - a border collie called Flynn.​​
As well as having worked with and trained rescue dogs, Amy has lots of experience in dealing with seperation anxiety cases and nervous dogs. She is a qualified Canine Coach with Canine Principles and is studying with the IMDT. She recently completed a placement in a veterinary practice and works part-time with the SSPCA as an Animal Rescue Officer.
As is the case with all our team, Amy is committed to using and learning the most up-to-date methods in dog training and is an Associate Member of The Pet Professional Guild and a qualified Pet Dog Ambassador Instructor.
 
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Amy Craine
Canine Coach

Liz also joined The Dogworks in 2016 and brings with her a wealth of experience. She has 4 dogs of her own, 3 of which are rescue dogs and she trains  with them reuglary and competes  at agility with them.  She has experience in dealing with many complex behavioural issues such as reactivity and anxiety. One of her own dogs is a Therapet and they regularly visit care homes in Troon. She also has her own professional dog walking business in South Ayrshire.
Liz is a provisional member of The Pet Professional Guild and is working towards becoming a Full Dog Trainer Member.

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Liz McCann
Training Class Assistant
​​​​​​​Claire is our resident doggy stylist and is a lifelong dog lover. She is a fully qualified groomer with City & Guilds accreditation and is experienced in styling dogs of all shapes and sizes and will ensure your dog has the best treatment while being pampered at The Dogworks.
​Claire uses only the best natural and holistic products and you can be sure your dog will be given all the time and gentle care required to ensure he or she has a happy and stress free experience whilst in our care. They won’t be left in a cage for hours and will be taken outside regularly for a toilet break.
Claire will carefully assess each dog and tailor their grooming services to suit their temperament and requirements. Our priority is always the comfort, safety and happiness of your dog. Whether your dog needs a full groom or a bath and tidy, they will receive professional one to one treatment.

​​​​​Claire McGregor

​​​​​​Canine Stylist

​​​Our Methods & Ethos

There are no harsh or punishment-based training methods in our classes or 1-2-1 consultations.  We make training fun for you and your dog and only use humane methods which help strengthen the bond you have with your dog.
We use kind, effective, reward-based training techniques and do not advocate the use of any methods that inflict pain or fear. Our training methods are based on the most up-to-date, scientific principles of how dogs learn.

Rewarding the good stuff 
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One of the foundations of dog training is that when you reinforce or reward your dog for doing something, they are more likely to repeat the behaviour.  If you do not reinforce the behaviour, it will stop.    
Reinforce more of the good stuff, prevent the bad stuff or train an alternative behaviour. SIMPLE!!

We may not realise it but we are training our dogs all the time. Dogs are like sponges - always soaking up information and learning - and often we don't use this to our advantage. If you don't pay attention to what you are teaching your dog (either on purpose or inadvertently), you may end up with a dog that you've trained to jump up at you, whine and nudge for attention, beg for food, or even run away from you when you call them!



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Using Food for training


We use food rewards in our training classes – especially when training new behaviours.  We use the food to ‘pay’ our dogs when they have performed the desired behaviour.  If they don’t perform the desired behaviour, we withhold the ‘pay’ and then make the ‘job’ less difficult so that your dog can succeed and earn their ‘pay’.  By encouraging your dog with food rewards he learns much faster and enjoys it more

You wouldn't go to work without some sort of pay so we shouldn't expect our dogs to do it! Just as jobs in the human world pay different wages, the same is true for dogs.  The more difficult the ‘job’ – the more a higher wage is needed.  You may find that the food reinforcers your dog works for at home, won’t work as effectively in a class environment, so you will have to ‘pay’ a higher salary!

From a scientific perspective, food in training is often referred to as a primary reinforcer.  It's primary because dogs need food to survive and the delivery of it, after performing the desired behaviour, is reinforcing - increasing the likelihood of the behaviour being repeated. 

Don't worry, you're not bribing your dog to do anything for you - the food is a consequence of the behaviour, not a bribe.  You don't have to use food reinforcers forever, and eventually you can fade them out, reinforcing your dog randomly rather than every time - ensuring that you still praise your dog for performing the desired behaviour.

If you are finding yourself more often than not, yelling, screaming at or hitting your dog or considering the use of quick fix training tools such as citronella collars, shock collars, choke chains, prong collars or electric fences, etc. please take a step back and a deep breath. If you don’t know how to help eliminate your dog’s behaviour problems in a humane way, use your higher human intelligence and call in a professional!

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​Contact Us
​If you are interested in any of our services or dog & puppy training, please drop us a note using our contact form below and we will get back to you as soon as possible.​​​​​​​​
​Visit Us
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​​info@thedogworks.biz

​​01294 551023

Unit 13 Ashgrove Workshops
​Kilwinning
KA13 6PU

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