At Blue Buffalo we realize the crucial importance trainers play in the relationship between pet parents and their four-legged friends. We’d like to recognize some of the incredible work being done by members of our True BLUE Trainer Program. For all her effort and outstanding work with dogs, for our next edition of our Trainer Highlight we’d like to recognize:
Ginger Hetrick, CCDT -Columba, SC
When it comes to working with dogs, Ginger wears many hats: trainer, rescuer, pet parent, shelter volunteer, and lover of all four-legged friends. It’s her tenacious dedication to dog training and her experience that make all of us proud to have Ginger as a member of the True BLUE Trainer Program.
A Love of Animals
When we asked whether Ginger is a pet parent herself, she was quick to respond, “Absolutely! Scarlett, our miniature poodle; Rhett, our rescued poodle; Duchess, our 11-month-old German Shepherd; Tara and Shep, both rescues and shepherd mixes.” With that many dogs, it’s clear that Ginger’s training skills translate to her home, where keeping a pack of five on their best behavior shows some serious talent.
How does she do it? “We enjoy our daily training routine, time in the yard being lazy, weekends at the lake and socializing at the pet stores. A nice walk is always a bonding time,” Ginger tells us.
When asked how long she’s been a trainer, Ginger responded, “After two years of study with CATCH Canine Trainers Academy and shadowing a professional trainer, I graduated at the top of my class as a certified dog trainer and behavior specialist. In August of 2015 I opened my business Pawsitively Obedient and have been making a difference in the lives of dogs and their humans, one client at a time.
And when we asked about what inspired her to get into dog training, Ginger told us, “I have always had the desire to make a difference in the lives of others, and my love of animals has always had a strong presence in my life. When life changes made it impossible to pursue a career in physical therapy, I started soul searching and seeking options. My searching landed me in conversation with CATCH Canine Trainers Academy and I knew instantly that I was on the right path to helping animals as well as their humans to live and love in a healthy, happy and bonding friendship.”
Ginger is proud to offer a variety of classes for her clients, telling us, “I offer basic and advanced obedience classes as well as manners, puppy manners and socialization, customized training and behavior management and modification. I also teach the importance of certain training tools and how to properly use them. I temperament test as well as help families choose the new pet that is best for their family and assist with introducing the new pet into the home.”
Sometimes four-legged students excel in ways we never expect. We asked Ginger to share a funny or interesting experience from her classes and she responded, “We had a client, a retriever/lab mix named Ella who was so very fearful in the beginning and barked constantly while I was talking with her guardians. She was okay and would train as long as her guardians were doing the training. Obviously though, her barking was so loud that her guardians could not hear my instructions. I tried the "click for silence" routine and it helped but she still barked. Not thinking, I placed my finger on my lips and muttered, "Shhhh." she silenced and tilted her head. I then put my finger on her lips, muttered, "Shhh," again she stopped barking as if she totally understood. A fluke maybe? However, after a few more sessions, Ella no longer barks. This may never work for another dog but it sure worked for Ella. Sometimes a trainer must be creative and do what works for that client. Dogs are all different just as we humans are.”
Some Sound Advice
Ginger offers the following piece of advice to her fellow trainers: “Train within your comfort zone! Don't be afraid to ask for help or to refer a client to a more experienced trainer. Always work at the dog's pace and remember to have fun!”
And when it comes to advice for pet parents Ginger says, “Nutrition, good health, exercise, training and love will provide a happy, well behaved, loved and tired furry one. Be the human your dog thinks you are and provide all the essentials.”
For her incredible dedication to training and selfless volunteer work with rescue animals, we’re proud to have Ginger as a True BLUE Trainer.
© 2016 Blue Buffalo Co., Ltd.
"Ginger has been a great asset to the Fairfield County Adoption Center in Winnsboro, SC. She is very knowledgeable and has helped many of our dogs acquire homes by working with them, assessing them and teaching them basic commands. She is very professional and presents herself well."
Janice E. Winnsboro. SC
We believe so strongly in force free, pain free, reward based training and the issues caused by aversive methods in the name of training that we have joined forces with The Pet Professional Guild and other Professional Trainers to Participate in Project Trade.
Project Trade is a movement to remove as many aversive training tools that cause pain and fear from the hands, homes, yards, and bodies of animals and their owners.
It's simple really!
Give us your old pinch, prong, choke, shock collar, Bark collar or Electronic dog fence and we will give you a discount on our services.
The discount depends on the equipment you trade.
Contact us! Let's get you signed up, make that trade and claim your discount.
"Ginger is my mentor from Catch Canine Trainers Academy and is as good with people as she is with dogs. If I were not a dog trainer, I would choose this woman to train my dogs without a doubt. Thanks, Ginger, for your time and patience!"
The American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior Recommends that veterinarians not refer clients to trainers or behavior consultants who subscribe to dominance theories and confrontational training but instead refer clients only to trainers who follow the scientifically based guidelines of positive reinforcement, classical and operant conditioning, desensitization and counterconditioning.