Deena Cooper is one of Canada’s most respected dog trainers and behaviour modification specialists. Through her company Deena Speaks Dog, she has been training, boarding and modifying the behavior of our canine companions for over 20 years.
Many years ago she discovered her uncanny ability to work with dogs (and their equally hard-to-train owners), which comes from an innate and deep-felt understanding of the doggy psyche. Long before it was the norm, Deena advocated and campaigned for the humane and nurturing dog training methods that have made her so popular, and that are more widely accepted today.
Her recent focus has been on communicating her methods and philosophies to the widest possible audience, for the benefit of the dogs, their owners and their neighbours. In Toronto, the increasingly crowded city in which she lives and works, increased density and pace-of-life have made the need for happy, well-behaved dogs even greater. To that end, she has embarked on a series of ambitious and groundbreaking initiatives designed to make a “dog’s life” something to envy.
She says, “Using positive reinforcement, I want to help people and dogs have the wonderful, nurturing relationships that pet companionship is all about. Too many dogs end up in shelters because their owners haven’t been able to achieve this. I am fortunate to speak both English and ‘Dog’, and I get great pleasure out of helping people and dogs live happily and successfully together.”
In her efforts to "spread the word", Deena Speaks Dog became a weekly one-hour radio programme on 1050 CHUM AM for the 2010 season. In the program, Deena and her guests discussed a wide range of dog-related topics. The program served as a forum to inform and entertain, and Deena spent a portion of it taking calls from listeners with questions about behaviour modification and training; sharing her simple and effective techniques of dealing with the full gamut of behaviour-related issues. She says,“The key to having a well-behaved and happy dog is in training the owners to understand their dogs’ behaviour. You could say that I’m a people-trainer, and I happen to train people with dogs.” She has also made several television appearances, including Spice TV’s The Princess Show, CBC's Steven & Chris, City TV Animal House calls and CTV's Property Brothers. She has also written a column for several newspapers.
Along with an informative high-traffic website (www.deenaspeaksdog.com), and a range of products including Canada’s first and only first aid kit for dogs, Deena’s dedication to the betterment of dogkind (sic) is self-evident. She has consulted for television and print, and regularly attends courses and seminars to refresh and update her knowledge and skills. She has been a member of the Canadian Kennel Club for ten years, is a member of the Association of Canadian Professional Dog Trainers, is certified in pet first aid and CPR, and is a certified evaluator for the CKC’s Canine Good Neighbour program.