Jessie is our resident trainer and behavior consultant. She began her professional work with dogs in 1996 while working at a veterinary practice in the greater Seattle area.
Jessie is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer-ka. In 2005, after meeting the requirements for working/training directly with clients and their dogs for a minimum of 300 hours, Jessie sat for the examination. The examination covers all areas of dog training including some of the following: canine ethology, science of learning theory, animal husbandry, and classroom instruction. The test administered by the CCPDT, and the Council tests independent of any organizations or dog training schools. Recertification requires ongoing continuing education or re-testing.
Jessie is also a Canine Good Citizen Evaluator through the AKC and professional member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers.
During her 12 years at the veterinary hospital, Jessie ran the Jump Start Puppy & New Start Dog Program. Created by her to satisfy the needs of the clinic's clientele, her training and behavior programs even brought in clients from other practices. The Jump Start puppy program incorporated all of the beginning puppy training issues (house training, crate training, mouthing, leadership, vet care, etc.) and included a consultation and puppy class. The New Start dog program was designed for those clients who had recently adopted an older pup or adult dog, and for those who needed a refresher for their dog.
A natural extension of the training services was also doing behavior consultations. Jessie worked closely with one of the staff veterinarians to develop a full-service behavior practice. Together they helped clients work on such issues as separation anxiety, dog-to-dog aggression, stranger aggression, etc.
Outside of her personal training experiences, Jessie has always continued her education in dog training and behavior by attending seminars and workshops done by both board-certified Veterinary Behaviorists, and other certified trainers and behaviorists.
The last several years the Oppermans were in the Northwest, Jessie also followed her passion for dog rescue by representing the German Shepherds for one of the oldest all-breed rescues in the nation. During that time she rehomed over 100 German Shepherds. As part of the rescue, she also helped the public learn about the breed, general dog training, and even helped some folks keep their dogs instead of rehoming them.
Jessie was truly hooked on training when she and Eric adopted a German Shepherd, Cain, back in the mid-90's. She worked with him in the areas of advanced obedience, and sheepherding. Cain received his Canine Good Citizen award and later Jessie & Cain became therapy Pet Partners through the Delta Society. Together they visited nursing homes and grade schools.
Over the years the Oppermans adopted more dogs and Jessie continued to train through advanced obedience, obtaining the Canine Good Citizen awards and working in new areas, such as agility and tracking. Over the years, Jessie trained her own dogs under the tutelage of some of the most respected trainers in the Pacific Northwest. This allowed her to broaden her own training experience and techniques, and many of the tips from these trainers have been adapted for use in her own training programs today.