Welcome to Pawtastic Dog Training
Kate and Sophie’s passion for training saw them join forces in 2018.
We understand that every dog is different and are passionate about delivering services that are tailored to your needs. We believe in building a strong relationship between you and your dog. From family dogs requiring some training fine tuning to dogs with reactivity issues, our focus is on delivering the best outcome for both canine and companion.
When not training, I go running with my own dogs on the beach. I enjoy painting, reading with my kids and hanging out with my family - and our 4 dogs, Djindi, Illy, Lottie and Koa (as well the cat Trixie).
Kate Robinson - Director/Head Trainer
I trained my first dog as a child of 8, so when we got Djindi (who is now 10), I started training with her immediately and was offered a job at a training centre as a dog walker. I started dog training professionally in 2012 after completing my certificate at NDTF. I eventually became the Training Coordinator. When I moved to Ocean Grove I opened my own business.
It is my passion to work with people and enable them to get the best from their dogs by building the necessary communication and understanding between dog and owner. A dog is never too young (from 8 weeks) or too old to benefit from you, the owner, learning more about them.
I have experience of helping hundreds of dogs and their families. I have worked with the full range, from rowdy puppies to rescue dogs with serious behavioural problems. I have fostered rescue dogs, volunteered with Lort Smith and assessed dogs for suitability to work with children, the disabled, and the elderly in the Lort Smith Pet Therapy program. I also work with neurodiverse clients helping with assistance dog training.
I am now studying for my Certificate IV in Training and Assessment to develop my skills in training trainers. I attend regular seminars and courses to keep my training up to date.
Sophie Noss - Director/Head Trainer
My passion for dog training started as a hobby while I held a 9-5 office job. It became a more serious pursuit after the arrival of my anxious dog, Lou. She was reactive, seemingly defiant and erratic in her behaviour. I couldn't understand why all the training I had been doing with her had not "paid off". I decided to complete my Certificate III in Dog Behaviour and Training in 2017 to learn more. By the end of completing my course, I knew that this was what I wanted to do as a career.
I love seeing the relationship change between a dog and owner. Seeing both parties grow in confidence and abilities is what makes this job worth it every single day. I also love seeing the "aha" moments people and dogs have that turn a frustrating situation into a successful path forward.
I would like to continue to expand my knowledge in how to assess and rehabilitate anxious dogs. I have learned a lot through my experience with Lou as well as a number of client dogs exhibiting anxious behaviours and reactivity. This area of training is incredibly rich and complex and there's always more to research and learn.
I enjoy spending time with my young family, bushwalking and diving. Being a new mum is keeping me very busy and giving me great experience with understanding working with kids and dogs.
Nina Smart - Senior Dog Trainer
Animals, and dogs especially, have always been a source of great enjoyment in my life. My personal end goal when training animals is ultimately to improve the relationship between pets and their owners so that they too can live happily and enjoy the time they spend together.
Having previously worked as an Animal Management Officer in Local Laws with The Lost Dogs Home and The Glen Eira City Council I was exposed to dogs with a range of behavioural problems which has taught me the importance of empathy and non-judgment, two qualities which I try to incorporate into my work with dog training clients who are trying to do the best they can for their pets.
I enjoy working with all types of behaviour cases and hope one day all animals will be trained with compassion and that the use of fear, pain or coercion will no longer be considered acceptable.
Wendy Barker - Senior Dog Trainer
My journey in the dog world started when l was 16yrs old, when l attended my first obedience class with my Border Collie. Over the years this has led into a love of competing in Obedience and Agility competitions and gaining several titles. Now over 30 years on l continue with competing particularly in Nose Work with my current dog and am proud of his achievements. I am amazed how dog sports have evolved over the years as well as their popularity. I have been an Obedience Instructor for over 10 years and love teaching people and their dogs the skills they need to have a happy relationship. My biggest reward is watching the dogs improve and watching how proud the owners are when they progress.
I am currently studying Cert. 3 Animal Studies and love learning about animals and how we can improve our relationship with them. I am a big believer that we never stop learning and always looking to gain more knowledge.
l love spending time with my family, volunteering at a local animal
shelter and teaching my dog new things.
Susie - Senior Dog Trainer
Information about Susie
Karen Witcomb- Office Super Star
I have been working with the girls for 12 months and love it. I never realised there was so much to dog training! I enjoy talking and hearing about the clients and their dogs although I have no dog training experience!
I moved here from the UK 15 years ago with my husband and 2 boys and love it, being by the ocean! Love reading and cycling which I have recently taken up and the occasional glass of champers.
Roxy, my shadow, we have had her as long as we have been here, my little best friend!
Victoria Paine - Junior Burger
I have always loved dogs since a child when we rescued a Golden x Border Collie. As I grew up with my career, I was not in a position to own my own dog, but instead became all my friend's dog auntie and did plenty of pet sitting on the side. As COVID struck, my partner and I took a sea change and thought it was an excellent opportunity to adopt little Wilma. Which then led me to meeting Kate and Sophie at Pawtastic Dog Training and signing up to do my Certificate III in Dog Training and Behaviour.
I love working with our lovely clients and helping them build the best relationships with their pets. There's no 'one size, fits all' and I love learning and developing my skills.
Outside of dog training, I like to keep active, play sport and long walks on the beach.