My name is Caroline Ward and I have always loved animals. As a child we had a family dog, Monty, a Cocker Spaniel as well as a variety of small pets.
Circumstances meant that I was unable to have a second dog for many years but eventually we were able to welcome Bella, a Papillon into our home. Although she is now our older girl she still enjoys cognitive training, scent games and tricks.
Darcy, a Shetland Sheepdog came into our lives in 2014 as a re;home and we started rally together as a way to build up the bond between us.
In 2016 we welcomed Joey, our second Papillon into our home, who has fun in our rally, clever canine and hooper classes.
Having trained and volunteered with Bella at a previous club, in 2013 I joined FITdogs to train rally and in 2014 I became a volunteer instructor and have since become a trainer for DogAID.
FITdogs Club was born in 2016.
I have gained my IABTC instructor and IABTC Clicker and target (levels 1-3), currently working towards level 4. I have attended a number of workshops in puppy training, lifeskills and cognition. Most recently, The Dogs Mind and Social Learning in puppies with Claudia Fugazza (2019). I have also completed a variety of canine related courses and I am currently working towards KCAI.
I am a rally judge and have seen rally develop as a sport over the years. I was privileged to be part of the ring party at Crufts 2018 and I am proud to be chosen as Assistant Manager for the Crufts Northern Rally Team.
I love helping puppies and dogs create a bond through play, fun and training and have a special interest in canine cognition and how dogs feel which is something I would like to develop in the future.
I am also an advocate for small dogs who I feel have great potential.
Sarah Louise Stridgeon
My name is Sarah Louise Stridgeon and I have always loved being around animals: exotic reptiles, horses and dogs. I have my FDSC in Canine Behaviour and Training and am currently working towards my BSC in Canine Behaviour Management.
My childhood dog Jake, a Labrador Retriever, was a working gun dog which I assisted my Dad in training.
In 2015 I brought home a Staffordshire Bull Terrier puppy, Apollo. Little did I know that this chubby little puppy would take me all the way to Crufts, coming second in Level 1 in the Inter-regional Rally Competition 2017. Apollo has his Gold Good Citizen award and competes in KC Rally. He also enjoys training tricks and doing fun agility.
At home we also have Atlas, an energetic miniature schnauzer who is my sons constant companion. Atlas loves agility and high energy games such as tug.
I attended classes at FITdogs to train Apollo in Rally and the Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme, realising my passion for dog training. I enjoy learning through continued personal development and I have currently been on several workshops in puppy training, life skills and canine cognition.
My passion lies in helping puppies and older dogs gain new skills and watching their relationship with their owners flourish.
I also have particular interest in teaching proprioception as well as improving the precision of our advanced rally competition dogs. Judging and chief stewarding Rally obedience competitions also enables me a unique view into the judging criteria of the sport and enables me to learn from watching many types of dog compete. I pass the benefits of these experiences onto the clients within my classes.