When I was eight years old, my dad brought home a cute Shetland Sheepdog puppy.
I was so excited, and I immediately wanted to keep her. My dad wasn’t sure, but I convinced him that I was ready to take care of my own pup.
I named her Heather, and completely fell in love with her. I immediately began training her tricks, and she loved it. My dentist loved animals and put on a pet show once a year.
I was so excited to bring Heather and show her off. I did so for numerous years and won first prize a few times. When I was in 4th grade,
I began visualizing myself on stage doing animal shows. I decided to start this dream by joining dog 4-H. Heather and I did numerous shows in obedience and showmanship. I continued 4-H and showing when
I received my next dog, Shadow, a Border Collie Mix.
Once I had Shadow, I realized I wasn’t enjoying dog training anymore. I was training with a choke collar and was using harsh training methods. It was no longer fun. Luckily, I was showing my dog at an obedience event, and my judge told me about an awesome book Don’t Shoot the Dog by Karen Pryor.
He said this method of training was more fun and humane. I read it and learned all about clicker training. Because I felt so passionate about dog training and learning how to train with rewards, I was hooked.
I began attending professional dog training seminars when I was only in high school. My mind absolutely loved problem solving on how to get my dog to listen in ways that were coming from being a team.
When I graduated high school, I decided to attend Ohio Wesleyan University in Delaware, Ohio. I received my Bachelors in Psychology and minored in Zoology and theater.
The psychology classes that I personally studied were focused on how animals learned. My advisor was a pro at animal learning and helped me learn a ton about animal psychology. He definitely was my mentor at that time.
I actually did. It wasn’t exactly how I planned it to be, but I got involved in zoos. When I was in college I did an internship with the animal show at the Cleveland Zoo. I then progressed to the Columbus Zoo after college where I worked in the reptile department and then participated in the animal shows for a summer.
After living in Ohio all of my life, I decided to move to Utah and worked at the bird show for a summer at the Utah Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City. As a result, I have much experience training many animal species. I trained parrots, raptors, ferrets, prehensile-tailed porcupines and more!
It was so cool being able to communicate with so many different animal species! I really love animal training a ton and I think it is fun to see how you can train any animal by using rewards.
After working at zoos, I realize I worked best doing animal training with dogs. Salt Lake City, Utah is where I networked with different doggie daycares and began holding dog obedience classes at multiple facilities.
I really enjoyed it so I decided to train professionally. After more networking, I began getting calls for private Salt Lake City dog training in people’s homes.
Yes, much of dog training is helping the owners understand why their dog is doing behaviors and helping the owners get the tools to change the behavior. When I first began training professionally, I had difficulty with getting the owners to do their homework.
After becoming a certified life coach in NLP, (neuro-linguistic programming) much changed. I was able to communicate with the people-end of dog training better.
My Salt Lake City dog training clients did their homework, loved working with me and got results. It is amazing what can be done with NLP. I can easily teach dog owners how their thoughts and emotions affect how their dog behaves.
Johanna Teresi, Utah Dog Trainer and Owner of Four Legged Scholars LLC, Dog Training, Salt Lake City
As expected, I grew up with dogs and was the one in my family most interested in training them. I had a variety of other pets (cats, a ferret, and rodents).
As a teen. I regularly volunteered for a local animal shelter. I loved working with animals and was sure I’d be a veterinarian. My passion shifted to Salt Lake City dog training as I grew older.
I attended Utah State University. Initially I had an interest in Wildlife Science. After, I attending classes on behaviorism was hooked!
I quickly switched my major to Psychology, worked with Dr. Carl Cheney, and graduated with my Bachelor’s degree in 2008. Animal behavior became my passion. As a result, Utah dog training suited me well.
I’ve been training since 2008. I started a part-time dog training business with a full time job at the Cache Humane Society located in Davis County in Utah.
I became a manager here and I helped with Utah dog training here. In 2014 I moved to the Salt Lake area as a single mom and had to switch careers to care for my daughter.
Mid-2018, I joined Johanna’s family at Four Legged Scholars LLC, Dog Training, Salt Lake City. However, I have known Johanna for over 10 years. I couldn’t be happier to live my dream!
Dog body language and communication is a particular interest of mine, as is the science of reward/punishment. I love being a detective to discover the underlying causes for behavior in order to bring about permanent change to bring peace to the whole family.
I love to continue my education and primarily use social media to keep up with the newest research, ideas, and innovations in dog training. Salt Lake City has been a fun place for me to practice much of this knowledge that I have learned from college and through my owner personal research.
I am currently doing group dog Salt Lake City dog training courses with Four Legged Scholars LLC.
For private training the locations that training can be held varies. I will serve Clearfield, Syracuse, Layton, Riverdale, Roy, Ogden, Kaysville, Farmington, Centerville, Bountiful, Woods Cross, North Salt Lake, the Capital Hill area, the Avenues area, South Salt Lake City, Millcreek area, Sugarhouse area, Murray, Holladay, West Valley City, Midvale, Taylorsville, Salt Lake County, Davis County, Weber County, and more.
I look forward to hearing your story and helping you to feel hope, happiness, and peace in your home and in your relationships with your furry friends!
Alyssa Giles, Salt Lake City Dog Trainer Partnering with Four Legged Scholars LLC, Dog Training, Salt Lake City