The Trainers

Meet the Trainers

Caitlin Crittenden

Caitlin is the founder, owner, and head trainer of Life Dog Training. Caitlin has loved animals since she was a little girl. Her list of pets growing up ranged from guinea pigs, cats, gerbils, fish, mice, and anything she could catch in nature.

Her interest in dog training began in middle school when her family adopted their first rescue dog, a Shetland Sheepdog named Tasha. She soon began checking out every dog book at the library she could get her hands on.

Her Border Collie, Mack, was her first real effort at training a dog of her own. As a Border Collie, Mack was a pleasure to train with his intelligence and willingness to please but also a challenge with his “one step ahead of you,” “think for himself” personality. Not to mention some of the quirks he had coming from a rescue situation.

“So Mack became my learning ground, and challenging him mentally meant continuously looking for new things to teach him and ways to help him fit into the adventures I loved going on.”

Caitlin taught Mack a word list of over 90 commands, he traveled the country with her for work; he lived out of hotels and campgrounds, he adapted to dozens of unique living situations with unique people, animals, and landscapes, and she says, “it has been a joy, and it has made me appreciate the value of a dog being able to adapt.” 

Since adopting Mack, Caitlin went onto pursue dog training as a career. Through seeking out ongoing learning opportunities she continues to learn from a wide variety of trainers, who employ a variety of methods. She holds strong that there is almost always more than one way to teach something, but finding the best approach to try for each client requires knowing the dog, the life situation, and most importantly, the owner and family. 

She is a huge advocate of the Sirius Puppy style of raising puppies, and she says, “She has a deep respect for trainers like Ian Dunbar, who have contributed so much to the field of dog training.”

She also appreciates many other trainers such as Barbara Woodhouse, Keren Pryor, Brian Kylcommons, Jamie Penrith and many, many more, less well known, local trainers, who excel in what they do both in communicating with and helping people and dogs.”

Kaitlyn Trevathan

Kaitlyn joined Life Dog Training in 2022. Kaitlyn has successfully trained her own canine partner Sebastian as a Service Dog. Kaitlyn is an amazing addition to the company. She is smart and continually pursing learning even more to excel as a trainer for her clients.

Kate is innovative, knows how to persevere until there is breakthrough, and she cares a lot about both people and dogs. 

Kaitlyn loves seeing others succeed – both human and dog, and has been a wonderful advocate for others.

“My name is Kaitlyn, but in the dog training world I go by Kate. I graduated college in 2021 with a degree in Biology and Healthcare management. 

I was pursuing a career in nursing when life had other plans and opened new doors. In July of 2022 I started training my current Service Dog and fell in love with dog training. It quickly become my way of decompressing, relaxing, and having fun.

I love the feeling you get when you work on something with a dog, whether that be a new skill or task, and it all of the sudden clicks. When it does, you can see the excitement in the dogs because you also get so excited.

I am also a big fan of taking videos and being able to watch them back when you feel you aren’t getting anywhere in training, so you can visibly see how far you actually have come. 

In November 2022, I started training at Life Dog Training and have loved connecting with both our human and dog clients.”

Check out Kaitlyn and Sebastian's social media

River (Rivy Riv)

River is a nine-year old Curly Coated Retriever. She is in love with birds, water, food, people, and dogs. She loves touch and thinks she is a lap dog. She is clumsy, physically tough and emotionally sensitive. She is great at slapstick comedy and keeps us laughing. She is also fantastic with kids and puppies. She’s my confidence builder for shy dogs.

In memory of: Mack (Buddy)

Mack passed in 2018. You will see pictures and hear stories of Mack throughout this website. Mack was the dog who started it all. He was a Border Collie, Australian Shepherd mix. He was well-traveled and a great teacher to other dogs. He liked cats and lived for food. He was a great adventure buddy and my original guinea pig for anything new. He was extremely smart, very goofy, sensitive, gentle, a bit mischievous at times, and he absolutely loved people. He was a one of a kind.