Back to All Events

The Hand & Paw Journey: A Shared Path to Individual Solutions

  • Rockin' Y Ranch 7600 Stillridge Drive Austin, TX 78736 (map)

ATTENDANCE STATUS 02/10/19: only 10 tickets left - register soon!

Whether working with your own dog or a dog professional working with a client’s dog, we all share the same journey with the same quest: How do we help this dog and his person? 

Statistics, jargon, and how-to recipes abound, but so much information can leave us overwhelmed and unsure. How do you determine what an individual dog and his person need? How do you find the best solution for each individual dog and situation?

Being a humane trainer requires that we figure out what we need to know. But where to begin? What path should we take?  Suzanne’s comprehensive approach considers the whole dog – physical, mental & emotional – as well as the whole relationship between dog and his person. 

This way of thinking about training and dogs provides a structure that helps anyone – regardless of experience – sort through and understand the dog, his person, and their relationship in a nuanced way. 

  • Is it mental? Attention, distraction, focus, understanding? Does the dog need skills or thinner slices? How do you ask the dog, “Do you understand?” 

  • Is it emotional? Is the dog worried, anxious, angry, frustrated, bored, fearful, aroused? Is the environment supportive, or is it a struggle for the dog?

  • Is it physical? Is the challenge based in structure, function, or both? Learn what the dog can tell you about his abilities by how he moves, changes position, catches treats, and more! 

  • Is it the relationship? How do the dog and his person work together? 

  • Is it a combination of many factors? If so, what to solve first? 


As Suzanne takes you inside the canine brain to help you see what she sees, you will refine your ability to improve your observation skills, question, analyze, and test drive your understanding and training plans.

Using guided problem solving, videos, live case histories with dogs and their people, a variety of interactive “try it yourself” exercises, and working in small groups you’ll learn how to:

• Hone your observation skills

• Turn observations into accurate interpretations

• Learn how to “ask” dogs questions (and handlers too!)

• Use Suzanne’s unique IF/THEN flowchart approach to identify issues

• Triage & prioritize

• Assess pros & cons for possible solutions

• Create an effective training plan that works for both the dog and his person 

Please join us for a special weekend full of new ideas, techniques, approaches, and a well exercised funny bone that’s sure to leave your head and your heart full.

Space for this seminar is limited and we expect it will sell out as Suzanne’s previous Austin appearances have – early registration is encouraged! 

If you would like to be considered for a case history during this seminar, please register and then submit your request at:

Suzanne will review all submissions and contact you directly about 10 days prior to the seminar.


This is a two-day seminar beginning at 9am Saturday, February 16th and ending at approximately 5pm Sunday, February 17th. One day attendance options are not available for this seminar. 


The beautiful Rockin’ Y Ranch (, 7600 Stillridge Drive

Austin, TX 78736


Early Early Bird (register by December 15, 2018):

Individual: $345

Group (5 or more), Shelter, and Rescue rate: - $325 per person*

Early Bird (December 16, 2018 - February 09, 2019:

 Individual: $365; 

Group (5 or more), Shelter, and Rescue rate: $345 per person*

Full Price (February 10, 2019 until close of registration at 5:00pm (CST)** February 15, 2019: 

Individual: $395 

Group (5 or more), Shelter, and Rescue rate: $375 per person*

*Contact Margaret ( to register your group, shelter, or rescue.

**Please note the specific time deadline for registrations received after February 09, 2019! IF space is still available after 5:00pm Friday, February 15, 2019 registrations will be available on a first come, first served basis until 8:30am Saturday, February 16, 2019. No registrations will be available after the seminar begins. 

 Available Scholarships:

K-9 Search & Rescue Scholarships: The Sterling Gillis Memorial K-9 SAR Scholarship honors a promising young SAR dog who was tragically killed. One space is reserved for a handler from an established K-9 SAR unit at no charge. 

Caretaker Scholarships: These scholarships support the animal shelter and rescue personnel that do such important work. One half-price scholarship is available for every 30 attendees at the seminar.

Please contact seminar hosts to apply for either of these scholarships. 

Are you a dog professional? 


Earlier Event: February 13