Dogs have been an important part of Greg’s adult life, starting with his Frisbee-crazy sheltie mix during his twenties. Relying on obedience trainers in the area, Greg found that although the training was mostly positive in nature, something was missing. That feeling grew when he attended obedience training sessions at a local training facility with his first Border collie, nearly 20 years later. While this training was also mostly positive, some behavior issues surfaced and the feeling that “there must be a better way” grew stronger.
The next big step toward force-free training came after the adoption of an 18-month-old rescued Border collie. Tehya was reactive to other dogs. Greg found that training schools often did not have experience working with these types of behavior issues. Through his rescue contacts, Greg was introduced to force-free training methods, including the clicker training (Karen Pryor) and Control Unleashed (Leslie McDevitt) methods, among others. After seeing profound changes in behavior and lower stress levels with Tehya, Greg was convinced; positive reinforcement and force-free training created the best path for them!
His retirement in early 2012 allowed Greg to attend Karen Pryor Academy for Animal Training & Behavior (KPA) and earn his Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner (CTP) certification. Eagle Creek K9 Behavior and Training was founded to bring these positive, science-based methods and philosophy to other dogs and their owners. Greg furthers his education in canine behavior by attending webinars from noted sources including Karen Pryor Academy, The Professional Pet Guild (an association of force-free trainers) and T.E.A.M. Education in Animal Behavior, along with other sources. Additional learning resources include ORCA (The Organization for Reinforcement Contingencies, University of North Texas), SPARCS (The Society for the Promotion of Applied Research in Canine Science) and MOOCS (Massive Open Online Course) from universities that have included University Of Toronto Scarborough and Harvard.
Greg lives in the southern Minneapolis/St. Paul area with his wife, Sue, and two rescued Border collies, Tehya and Eva. The family has volunteered as a foster home for two regional Border collie rescue groups. Tehya and Eva currently compete in AKC agility and have earned their Master’s Standard, Master’s Jumpers with Weaves, and Canine Good Citizen titles.