About Pet Professor

Welcome to Pet Professor - Your local Dog Trainer in the Inner West

Pet Professor services the Inner West, Eastern Suburbs, Parramatta, Canterbury/Bankstown, Lower North Shore and North West regions of Sydney. For our cat consultations, you can be anywhere in Australia or New Zealand as we easily book consultations via Video Conference. 

Why Pet Professor?

When working with me you are guaranteed to access to a skilled and knowledgeable trainer. 

We work to first figure out your needs, find the best solution that fits into your lifestyle and training abilities and work towards building the dog you dreamed. Working together, I will help reduce the stress and anxiety that some dog owners needlessly suffer through when owning a dog. 

Practising training, gaining certifications, attending conferences and continuously studying keeps me up to date on all the latest scientific, evidence-based methods of training which means that your dog receives the best training possible, in the most ethical way.

Past clients have told me that they love just how easy “concept training” (training with games) is. 

Using easy-to-play training games we can quickly and effectively get your dog from zero to hero, with real-life results – whether just got a new puppy, or need help with a behaviour that you’ve been ‘putting’ up with for years. 

Day Training with Samoyed
Learning to lay down during Day Training session

Professional. Educated. Skilled.

Hi, I’m Marianne Curran – a certified dog and cat trainer in the Inner West.

In 2018, with the vision to be able to help more clients and their dogs, cats and other pets to live their best lives, I started Pet Professor. 

Since then, I have worked with a variety of dog training – from Peeing Pups to Dangerous Dogs, my focus is finding the reasons why your pet is the way they are and formulate prevention and management strategies along with training and behaviour modification plans. 

I offer training and management plans PERSONALISED to you and your dog and the individual circumstances that brought you seeking help in the first place. 

 

We aren't all the same.

Unfortunately, the animal industry, especially the training aspect, is full of dud ‘professionals’. It is an unregulated industry which means that anyone can call themselves a dog trainer. Experience doesn’t equal expertise. 

Unlike some other trainers who will tell you they know dogs because they have years of experience having “had dogs growing up”, very often they lack any formal skills or training or worse, use outdated and unethical training methods on their client’s dogs. 

Too often my client’s have paid good money for what they thought was a ‘professional’ trainer who made the dog worse, 

When their training didn’t work they resorted to cruel punishment methods to try and train a scared and anxious dog.

This type of story is sadly more and more common these days.  

 

Behaviour Modification Shar Pei Scared
Private Consultation with Samoyed

The best mentors and training

Since 2014, I’ve mentored with some of the best positive-reinforcement trainers in Sydney including the President of the APDT (Association of Pet Dog Trainers), as well as the Vice President of the PPGA (Pet Professional Guild Australia).

I’ve work on hundreds of behaviour and training cases for both cats and dogs, everything from inappropriate toileting, biting and nipping children or adults to aggressive behaviours towards owners or visitors or other animals in the home. 

I’ve worked to help dogs overcome their fears and anxieties, reducing the stress in their lives.

 

To date, I have obtained the following certifications:

2016-18 – Certificate IV in Companion Animals Services, Delta Institute

2018-19 – Pro Dog Trainer, AbsoluteDogs

2019 – Living and Learning with Animals, Behaviour Works

2021 – Master Course in Aggression, Aggression in Dogs 

2021 – Separation Anxiety Training Course, Dr Moira Hechenleitner

I have attended conferences around Australia including:

2016 – APDT Conference

2017- Delta Institute Dog Behaviour Conference

2018 – PPGA Conference;  Sydney Animal Behaviour Service – Behaviour Update Seminar & the Australasian Animal Trainers Conference – Melbourne Zoo

2021 – Lemonade Conference (FDSA)

Proud Member of Associations

FAQs

My business is a mobile business which services the Inner West and Eastern Suburbs of Sydney. For the most part, I come to you, to make training easier for you. Some classes are located in the Inner West and Surry Hills.

I designed programs for new puppy and dog owners, dogs with manners issues and also dogs with deeper behavioural problems to be able to get the best out of your time and your dog’s training. I have up to five free phone consults each week for new clients to be able to discuss their training problem – book yours in today to get started on creating a personalised training plan for your dog. 

I hold a Certificate IV in Companion Animal Services (Delta Institute) as well as being a Pro Dog Trainer (AbsoluteDogs). I have completed the Living and Learning with Animals course by Dr Susan Friedman from Behaviour Works.

I am a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers and the Pet Professional Guild Australia as well as the Animal Training Academy.

Unfortunately, there is no easy answer to this question! There is only one of your dog in the whole world after all, they need to be trained as an individual.

Some behavioural problems that are well rehearsed – where your dog has been doing them for a long time – take longer to re-train.

I have a variety of training options and each one works differently. I can only take an educated guess based of how long it might take. There are lots of contributing factors such as the environment your dog lives in, your time commitment to training, how quickly your dog learns and so on.

I’ve design programs that will get you some quick wins that you will see from the first day of training – to take the pressure off you and your dog and start rebuilding your relationship. I create a personalised training plan that suits you and your dog and your specific needs. You can expect changes from the start as long as you make the commitment and follow the plan. It’s a bit like having a personal trainer at the gym- they can show you how best to eat, work out and look after yourself, but you’ll only see the difference if you actual do it!

I love treats as much as the next person – spending the day at the spa, the movies, at the beach eating ice cream… all of these things I find reinforcing and will sometimes give myself for a ‘job well done’.

I have the same attitude with your dog’s training – yes, I ‘reinforce’ behaviour, for a job well done, and yes, food is a good reinforcer for dogs. It’s small, fast to use which means that we can get through a training session quickly and it has high value attached to it.

I aim to give reinforcers when your dog gives me good behaviour, so that I see it happen again in the future. As for reinforcers, I also use play opportunities like chasing a ball, playing tug, even giving access to sniffing on walks – whatever it is that your dog likes as other alternatives.

Reinforcement is scientifically proven to work – as stated by the Law of Effect “Behaviours will repeat themselves, or not, as a result of the consequences of the same behaviour in the past.” – Thorndike.

The initial consult determines the best course of action for problem bahaviours based on why they are happening with you and your dog.

I complete a functional assessment to help figure out why the problem behaviour occurs. The assessments will show clearly the root of the problem and therefore we can then make changes to either the environment, the consequences, or both, to prevent the problem in the future.

Unfortunately, the dominance theory, like the bell bottoms, tie dyed shirts and disco music of era it originated from, is totally outdated.

In a nutshell, dogs spend their days either trying to gain access to things they want or avoiding things they don’t. Your dog doesn’t wake up each day and try and dominant you and you shouldn’t worry about labeling them as such.

Instead of worrying about the label ‘dominance’ we can take a more holistic view – by describing what it is your dog is doing and what they get as a result of doing it. You can very quickly figure out what function the behaviour serves– to get something or to avoid it and therefore find new ways for your dog to behaviour in those instances.

Need help today?