Even More Success Stories
At CATCH, we are proud to help our dog training students embark on professional careers. Meet some more of our successful CATCH students and graduates.
Bryony Aviles, Basics Pro Graduate, CPDT-KA
Owner, Sandy Paws Dog Training, Guilford, CT
Making a difference:
In addition to her professional credentials, Bryony is committed to helping abandoned and rescued animals. She has volunteered extensively with animal rescues and shelters, including in New York and Colorado, and now in Connecticut through the East Haven Animal Shelter, Connecticut Humane Society and Branford’s Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter. Most recently, she has become a trainer for the CT-based, Homeward Bound rescue group.
Vincent Olito, CCDT,
Owner, Camp Ruff Ruff, Staten Island, NY
Favorite part of working with dogs:
Working with dogs is rewarding in so many ways. If I had to pick a favorite I would start with being able to communicate with any dog in any environment or social situation. I also love helping human and dog relationships improve to keep dogs out of shelters. Helping shelter dogs find homes brings tears to my eyes.
On graduating from CATCH:
I believe it was the best decision I made to have CATCH for my education. The curriculum is so well laid out that I don’t think I could ever have created this strong foundation of knowledge and skills on my own. Whenever I go to a seminar or read a new book I can understand everything any trainer is teaching! I cannot say enough about how rewarding this career “passion” is and how grateful I am to the CATCH team. Every day/week/year it gets better and better. Thank You CATCH – always proud to be part of the family.
Kasey Litt, CCDT
Owner, Kritter Keepers, Acworth, GA
My experience on-campus:
The experience and thoughtfulness of the instructors and being able to work with the dogs every day and take what we read about and put into action right away was incredible. What you wanted us to know is that there are lots of methods and ways to do things and we need to have them all in our toolbox and customize for each dog. You made us think on our feet.
I am a certified dog trainer with many years of experience working with animal shelters across the country. I am currently an avid volunteer with Mostly Mutts Animal Rescue and Adoption in Acworth, GA. In addition to dog training, I love working with all animals from our feathered friends to our scaly companions and everything in between. I have extensive experience with turtles, fish, parrots, cats, rabbits, chinchillas, goats, horses and pigs.
Darcy Litt, CCDT
Owner, Darcy Litt Consulting, Bergen County, NJ
Since graduating CATCH:
I started my own Walk & Train business, which is going great. Also, I volunteer at St. Hubert’s Training Center, and did volunteer at the ASPCA Rehab Center when it was at St. Hubert’s. I never would have had those opportunities if I hadn’t taken the CATCH Program.
John Swaney, CCDT, CPDT-KA
Trainer, Cold Nose Companions, Burton, OH
John started his dog training pursuits when he adopted a German Shepherd, named Ginger, and realized he had a dog that needed a job to do as an outlet for her rambunctious behavior. In 2010, he became a member of a local volunteer K9 search and rescue team. Until Ginger’s retirement in January 2016, John and Ginger assisted statewide police and fire departments, as well as those in adjoining states, in locating missing persons. John and Ginger had multiple national certifications specializing in area search for finding live people that are missing. Ginger loved the work and John found this volunteer career very rewarding, so much so that he adopted his second German Shepherd, Hogan. John and Hogan recently achieved their live find area search certification, as well as a Canine Life and Social Skills (C.L.A.S.S.) BA certification.
Erika Perez, CCDT
Owner, Euro-K9, Maywood, NJ
Growing up in eastern Europe, it was my experience that animals often did not get the respect they deserved. I always hoped the day would come that I can do something to change that. This is why I decided to become a professional dog trainer. Love for nature and animals, has been the only constant in my life since my childhood. I believe dogs are family. My goal is to help dogs and their humans live in a happy fulfilling relationship. I advocate for animal welfare, because the way we treat animals says a lot about us.
Melita Wright, CCDT, CPDT-KA
Founder, Lucky Dog Camp, Pennington, NJ
Melita’s training philosophy:
Melita trains by using motivation not intimidation. She specializes in educating new puppy owners, helping people with their adopted dog, and behavior modification. She wants to teach people how to read and understand what their dog is trying to communicate to them by understanding a dog’s body language. Dogs don’t “speak” English but they have a lot to say. If we can learn to read a dog’s postures and signals we can better understand his feelings and motivations and be better able to predict what he is likely to do. She trains by building trust and respect, not punishment and dominance.
Sara Bright, CCDT, CPDT-KA, BBA
Founder, Best Friends Dog Academy, Iowa City, IA
Originally from Iowa City, she spent several years living on the East Coast, where, in 1994, she was one of the original volunteers who worked together to create Delaware Valley Golden Retriever Rescue (DVGRR). Serving in a variety of roles ranging from Board President to hospice foster home, Sara most recently worked as the Director of Adoption & Education at DVGRR. Since moving home to Iowa in 2015, Sara worked as the Dog Training Coordinator at the Iowa City Animal Care & Adoption Center, as a foster home to dogs with behavioral and medical challenges, and with the Iowa City Animal Services Supervisor to create a prison dog program and a local animal response team. She is also a responder with national animal disaster response teams, most recently deploying to Houston, TX following Hurricane Harvey to work with Best Friends Animal Society as they sheltered and rehabilitated over 400 dogs.