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Cheryl Smith

Operations Manager and Program Director

Cheryl has over forty years of experience in canine behavioural training and has been recognized as “one of Canada’s Top Dog Trainers”. 
She began as an educator working with disadvantaged children, and subsequently transitioned to a career as a Human Resources Specialist. In 1972 began instructing dog obedience classes.

Sheryl Trekofski

Senior Instructor

Spurred by a nagging desire to take the spiritual connection she feels for dogs, Sheryl undertook and graduated from an Ottawa-based dog training institute in 2011. As a professional dog trainer and handler since 2011, Sheryl has worked with some of the best animal behaviourists and trainers in the world, including Cheryl Smith, and JaneMadigan. Sheryl has also attended workshops and seminars with Dr. Ian Dunbar, Sophia Yin, Nicole Wilde, Ken Ramirez (Karen Pryor Clicker Training Institute), Suzanne Clothier,Kathy Szabo, Alexandra Horowitz and Victoria Stilwell.

Finola Pitcher

Senior Instructor

Finola has also studied a broad range of experts in the canine field, such as Dr. Ian Dunbar, Jean Donaldson, Dr. Pamela Reid, Pia Silvani and Turid Rugas, and keeps current by attending seminars yearly and reading contemporary articles on dog and animal behaviour. Finola’s approach is based on Dr. Ian Dunbar’s lure-reward method and positive reinforcement techniques. She employs these techniques with compassionate but firm rules, limits and restrictions to help the dog learn appropriate behaviours for human society.

Caroline Picotte

Senior Instructor

Caroline is a graduate of Cheryl Smith's Professional Canine Handler & Instructor program. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology from the University of Ottawa, has over 16 years of professional experience in client service, and is fluent in both English and French. Caroline is a professional member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) and the Canadian Association of Professional Pet Dog Trainers (CAPPDT), as well as a member of Responsible Dog Owners of Canada (RDOC). She is continuing her canine education and training through these organizations and with coaching, courses, and seminars by some of the best dog trainers and animal behaviourists including Cheryl Smith,  Dr. Ian Dunbar, and Pia Silvani.

Caroline is available for private training sessions as well as boarding and board & train. She lives in Barrhaven with the two loves of her life, her Morkie Chloe and Chihuahua Timmy.

Niall Sheehan

Daycare Manager, Instructor

Niall Sheehan is a graduate of an Ottawa based Canine Instructor program and has been working with Cheryl Smith since 2011. Niall has been involved with dogs since an early age and in 2008 after 15 years in IT, he started PoochedPups.com as a dog walking business. This experience was the first step in a long overdue career change. Niall now manages the Doggy Daycare at TAG Dog Training Education Centre.


The rest of the team

Monique Charron

Senior Instructor

Monique has worked in International Development since 2001 and has recently joined the team at Veterinarians without Borders allowing her to work with animals to help alleviate poverty in developing countries. In 2012 Monique learned about Cheryl Smith’s canine training program and became an apprentice soon after fostering a reactive Great Dane that she could not help. She has since acquired many skills to better work with, understand and love dogs like Hagrid but also;how to train dogs to better integrate the human world and guide dog owners on how to respect and train their beloved animals.

Monique has attended several seminars and workshops including the annual Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) conferences. The first event of this sort was the ‘Canine Conflict Resolution’ workshop given by Cheryl Smith. It was an informative seminar that inspired her to learn more. Since then she has attended several Ian Dunbar presentations, a TTouch week-long training course as well as the Pia Silvani Canine Play workshop held in Ottawa in 2015.

Monique has grown up with dogs, her favorite a German Shepherd named Lara. As a child she spent all her free time at a small rural stable with horses that she trained and showed.

Sharon Hobson

Agility Instructor

Sharon has been teaching agility since 2001. She discovered the sport a year earlier when looking for something to do with her 18-month old rescued yellow Lab, Shiloh.

Agility opened up a whole new world to both of them. Not only did the training help them bond, but they traveled around Ontario together, competing at trials and meeting all sorts of kind and wonderful people who shared their love of the sport. Shiloh was not an easy dog to do agility with – as a ‘social butterfly’ Shiloh often preferred to go off to visit other dogs and people instead of running a course! But he taught Sharon that the joy of agility lies in achieving those perfect moments on a course when handler and dog are in perfect harmony and work together as one. Shiloh and Sharon attended many workshops and clinics together to improve their proficiency, and deal with the various issues that crop up in learning how to communicate effectively while running around a complex course of jumps, tunnels and contact obstacles.

Shiloh crossed the Rainbow Bridge in 2009 but he continues to live on in Sharon’s lessons because there is almost nothing that any dog can do, that Shiloh hasn’t done before! All the issues he presented over the years have given Sharon the motivation to find a way to deal with them. But most of all, Shiloh left a legacy of pure joy for the sport of Agility. Nothing makes Sharon happier than seeing students use their bodies to communicate with their dogs, and succeed at a maneuver that had previously seemed impossible to achieve - giving them that “perfect moment”.

Sharon lives in Fitzroy Harbour with her husband, Jim, and their two horses, three dogs, and two cats. She is the proprietor of Hotdiggity Dog Training

Terry Levere

Terry was born and raised in Ottawa. She attended Woodroffe High School and took her Nursing degree at Ottawa Civic Hospital. Her internship specialty was Neonatology and Emergency Medicine. After graduation she went to Nanaimo for a time ,returning to Ottawa and working at Riverside Hospital for the remainder of her career.

She joined Forever Friends three years ago as a client with her Golden Retriever Parker. Her passion for her dog was immediately evident as was her passion for learning everything about this new world of dog training. She and her dog Parker became an ambassador for the school in a short space of time.

Terry and her invisible dog Barney continue to impart her knowledge to our clients at TAG and they are a valued addition to our instructional staff.

Her special interests include music and acoustic guitar playing in particular. She is a skilled woodworker and a staunch and vocal fan of the Ottawa Senators.

Meghan Scott

Senior Instructor

Meghan Scott has worked with dogs in many different areas. She graduated from the Veterinary Assistant program at Algonquin College in 2004 and began an apprenticeship at Forever Friends Dog Training in February 2006 under Cheryl Smith. In October 2009, Meghan became an evaluator for the Canadian Canine Good Citizen Test (CCGC) with Responsible Dog Owners of Canada. Meghan and her Boxer, Kyra, passed their CCGC test in October 2009–quite an accomplishment! Meghan has also  completed her Animal Psychology Certification Diploma. 

Meghan offers her home and time as a foster parent for many different dogs over the years. She nurtures them and helps them to learn, to love and to live in a human environment with ease, ultimately helping them find that purrfect forever home. 

Meghan keeps her dog education current by attending seminars by Chris Bach, Jean Dodds, Cheryl Smith, Bach Flower Remedies,  Pia Silvani - Play!, Ian Dunbar’s seminar on learning theory and puppy training. Meghan was a canine handler at the Canine Conflict seminar held by Cheryl Smith in May 2012 and Pia Sivania's Play Seminar in September 2015. She has also volunteered her time as a ring steward at the Kars Dog Club. Most recently Meghan was the Head Instructor for Ottawa Humane Society's L.E.A.D Program.  

Meghan has a real passion for helping people communicate with their dogs more effectively and has proven to be a very knowledgeable and informative instructor. Meghan shares her home with her husband Jeff and their 3 dogs; Kyra, Boxer; Tyson, American Pit Bull; and Karma, Boxer as well as their cat, Toby and 3 lizards Clyde, Grout and Dragon. 

Margarita Melis

Margarita was raised by German Shepherds on the prairies of the Spanish peninsula. In 2011, Thor, a particularly handsome and challenging dog, entered her life and set her on the path to learn more about her canine friends’ behaviour.

This path led her to meet Cheryl Smith in 2016, thanks to whom Margarita gained a deeper understanding of Thor’s issues, enriching their relationship further and allowing them to restore a peaceful family life.

This inspired Margarita to begin her apprenticeship with Cheryl Smith. In addition, she became certified in pet first-aid, worked as a dog walker, volunteered for the SPCA and worked at a dog rescue and kennel, where she continues to provide care for dogs from all walks of life.

Margarita's hobbies include hiking with her dogs, scuba diving and recreational flying. She lives in Ottawa with her husband Nick, as well as Thor, a motivational barker, and Tillie, an accomplished puppy instructor and professional food burglar.

Melissa Courville
Nathalie Hansen
Janine Proulx


Ora Kendall

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17 Grenfell Cres Unit#1, Nepean, Ontario Canada K2G 0G3, (613) 695-0TAG (0824) 

Phones are answered 9:00 AM - 6 PM Monday to Friday, weekends from 9:30 AM - 3:00 PM.