Kim Schiro - Head Trainer
Kim is a Certified Dog Trainer who graduated with honors from Animal Behavior College and a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT). She is an active participant in the Best Friends Animal Society Community Training Partner program and works as a Mentor Trainer for other students who are going through the ABC Certification Program.
Kim has studied under the guidance of many respected professional trainers learning a wide range of philosophies from each one and regularly supplements her education by attending training seminars and workshops. She is certified in animal nutrition and Dog CPR/First Aid; she also has professional experience with various other animal species. Kim is president of the Chicago Dachshund Lovers Club and actively competes with her dogs in agility and herding, earning several titles with each of them.
Kim helps dog owners teach their canine companions to be well-behaved, happy members of the family. She specializes in not only obedience and agility training but also more serious issues including fearfulness, anxiety, nuisance barking and aggression. Her approach to training always emphasizes positive and humane methods. Kim lives in Chicago with her dogs, Tommy, Sampson, Jack and Speedy the turtle. For fun, she can always be found with her dogs on the agility course or the farm herding the sheep.
Jorge Sanchez – Trainer
Jorge completed his dog training certification through Animal Behavior College with honors. After completing his requirements for his certification, he stayed on with KDC for six months longer to further his knowledge in training on a volunteer basis. He holds a certification in first aid/CPR and specializes in puppy training. Jorge also owns a successful dog walking service in the North Chicago area. In his spare time: Jorge enjoys sharing adventures with his wife, Rosa, playing various sports, mentoring teens with his church and volunteers with PAWS Chicago.
Amber Haseltine – Trainer
Amber completed her dog training certification through Animal Behavior College, working with Kim as her mentor trainer and is excited to join the KDC team. She has also earned certification in pet nutrition, first aid/CPR and specializes in training shelter dogs. In her spare time, she goes on adventures with her American Bulldog, Danali and volunteers at Chicago Canine Rescue.
Debbie Watkins – Trainer
Debbie graduated from the University of Illinois with a BA in Business and has been an avid dog lover since childhood. She has trained with various obedience and agility trainers throughout the Chicagoland area for the past 5 years, and has currently been assisting Kim with her agility classes. On weekends, Debbie enjoys competing in agility trials and secretly dreams of traveling the US in an RV competing nationwide upon retirement.
Debbie lives in Lincoln Park with her very patient husband, Dave and their three dachshunds, Marlow, Henley, and Coco, the latest addition to "the Pack".
Karen Didrickson - Trainer
Karen has always had an animal centered life. Her best friends growing up were childhood pets Lindy, the beagle, and Callie, the appaloosa horse. After Karen attended her first agility class, with Kim, in 2012, she knew she was hooked, and has trained with various instructors in the Chicagoland area. Karen and her dogs Tillie, the Australian Shepherd, and Wes, the Border Collie, can be found competing in agility on the weekends.
“I just wanted to take a moment and say thank you for everything from jumping through tunnels to walking next to Logan. I have to tell you that I initially questioned the decision in taking an Obedience class again. My friends even wondered why I did it. But somewhere between the first week and the last week of Obedience I realized something; I realized I didn't do it so that Logan could walk better with me, I didn't do it because Logan needed a stronger hand. I did it because I needed to understand how to walk with Logan not the other way around. I did it because I needed to be a stronger leader for my boy. He doesn't need a stronger hand. The class was for me not for him.”