V Force Dog Training Taking your team to the next level
Melissa of V Force Dog Training Quite simply I am the trainer and handler I am because of the dog I fell into. Its taken time, blood, sweat, tears, and luck, but it's been a fun ride. I acquired Vader as a pet, a possible agility dog, and he became so much more. I fell in love with dog training and dog sports and have never looked back. It became my passion and I devoted myself to it. I tore through every book I could find on dog behavior, how scent works, and dog training. I attended seminars I could find and went to watch other dog trainers instruct. Every year we go on more adventures and our bond grows stronger. From NW1 to NW3 Elite within the span of a year, I've loved our journey and continue to experience joy as I work and grow through education and trial experience. I've since started teaching others both in search and rescue work, nose work, and basic obedience/cgc through group and private lessons.
I love seeing the 'light bulb' go off as handlers make connections and improve their handling and skills. Trouble shooting is my one of my favorite things. The happiness of owners as they see their canine friend succeed and improve, there is nothing greater. Nosework is a sport that can help decrease reactivity in dogs, improve confidence in more timid or fearful dogs, and improve the bond between dog and human as we learn to listen and communicate with our canine partners. Something so simple, can improve so much. I have my dog to thank for sharing his world with me and I'd like to help your dog share his world with you through this wonderful sport.
Accomplishments Certifying Official in Search and Rescue for AWDA Invitation to 2017 NACSW Nationals Invitational Official AKC Scent Work Judge 7th ranked NACSW Elite dog team in the nation on the national qualifying list. 2017 Sar Instructor at AWDA Seminar First dog team to accomplish NW3, NW3 ELITE, ELITE L1, ELITE L2, ELITE L3, and ELITE CH in the Pittsburgh area 1st place (High in Trial) at an elite trial X 3 2nd place overall at an elite trial Too many to count elite search placements NW3 Elite, NW3-C, NW3-E, NW3-I, NW3-V NW2-3rd place in vehicle search NW1on two different dogs with a 2nd in containers ORT Birch, Anise and Clove on two different dogs L2C, L2E, L2V, L2I, L1V, L1I, L1C, L1E L2V 1st Place Overall, 1st and 3rd place searches L2C 2nd place Overall, 1st and 2nd place searches L2E 3rd place Overall, 1st and 2nd place searches L1V-2nd Place element search L1C-1st Place Overall, 1st place, 2x 2nd place, & 3rd place searches L1E-2x 3rd place searches Attended and competed at the first Summit Trial in the U.S. AKC SIA, SEA, SCA, SWN, SIN, SEN, SBN, & SCN titles Multiple placements at AKC Trials USCSS DDN title with high in trial overall placement and high in trial champion placement 2016 Assistant Sar Instructor at AWDA Seminar 2015 AWDA Sar Trailing Certification 2014 USMA Sar Trailing Certification AKC CGC Title AKC Trick dog titles on two different dogs TDI Title AKC DS and DSA dock diving titles AKC 2016 Dock Diving Nationals Invitation UKC USJ Dock Diving Title-Made it into finals at first competition AKC CAT lure coursing test and CAA Advanced AKC FAST CAT BCAT title AKC CGC Evaluator (All levels including star puppy) AKC TRICK Dog Evaluator
Education Notable seminars and events listed, however there are also too many to simply list that have helped me over the years. From attending other SAR teams trainings, to traveling to work with SAR trainers, nose work instructors, dog trainers, or simply to watch other teams work with their dogs and instructors. They all have my thanks and gratitude. There also numerous texts and online educational classes I have taken to help 'build my toolbox' in regards to dog training. Forever a life long student, keep learning and growing.
2019 Patterns, Handling, & Games McManus Seminar 2019 Midwest Veterinary Conference 2019 Michael McManus Games Seminar 2018 Tony Gravely Seminar 2018 Jacey Kelly Seminar 2018 Michael McManus Games Seminar 2018 RA Boyles Scent Work Work Shop AWDA K9-Search and Rescue Seminar 2018 AWDA/Bullocks K9-Search and Rescue Seminar 2017 Kocher Method Sar Seminar 2017 Nosework workshop with Cindy Luster 2016 Kocher Method Sar Seminar 2016 NACSW Founder Ron Gaunt Nosework Seminar 2016 Nosework seminar with Stacey Barnett 2016 Kocher Method SAR seminar 2015 Nosework Seminar with Sergio Rojas 2015 USMA SAR Seminar 2014 Kocher Method SAR Seminar 2014 USMA Sar Seminar 2013 6 years of obedience/behavioral/training classes with different methods 1.5 years of agility classes with different methods 1 year of therapy dog class with different methods Lessons taken with 4 different CNWI's Lessons with 2 NACSW CO's and previous nationals competitor Multiple Online Nosework Classes Dog in white at an Elite Trial Educational/Teaching Continuing Education Classes Volunteer at an L1C, ELITE trial, L1I, NW3's, USCSS, and ORT's Spectated at an L1C Masters degree in Psychology Bachelors degree in Psychology Associates degree in Veterinary Technology Certified Veterinary Technician College Instructor/Educator