Stevi has been with Off-leash K9 for four years, joining the team with ample tenure having worked with dogs since she was eight. Her experience and training includes training guide dogs for the blind, breed-specific training with Five Peaks German Shepherds, and general training at Petco. In addition to her work experience, Stevi consistently seeks out mentorship and independent learning tracks to supplement her knowledge.
When working with a new client, Stevi focuses on building a relationship with the client through their specific interests outside of their animals (cars, sports, etc.) to create metaphorical relationships with dog training. She also focuses on reading body language in both dog and owner too, to better help her understand the dog/owner relationship. From there, she uses a trial-and-error method to figure out how a dog best learns her training methods, which, for Stevi, is the easiest and most rewarding part of the job. She says that just like they see, dogs also work with a black and white mentality, so they can quickly grasp the straightforward nature of good and bad as it relates to their training. With Stevi, dogs know that “come” means come now, and she reinforces that behavior with recall and reinforcement, producing five-star results.
In her free time, Stevi enjoys practicing protection work with her German Shepherd, Comrade. An aggressive dog when they met, Stevi became his ally, and together they were able to turn his aggression into productive behaviors and a beautiful relationship. He’s a loveable boy and she is always proud to show him off.