Good trainers are hard to come by.  Ruffgers is fortunate to have found Courtney, joined the our team in April 2019. She moved down to Fort Myers, FL from Naperville, IL to further her education at Florida Gulf Coast University. She is in her last semester of college and will graduate in May 2020 with her Bachelor of Science in Nursing.  
 
 
 Courtney has always loved dogs from a young age. She was raised around German Shepherds. In 5th grade, Courtney started training her Rhodesian Ridgeback mix, Barley. In 2010, she adopted her second dog, Smoky. Courtney and Smoky have traveled around the country competing in dog agility, including CPE Nationals, AKC Nationals, and AKC Invitationals.  Now that Barley and Smoky are retired, Courtney occasionally competes in dog agility with her Australian Shepherd, Surf. She has been focusing most of her attention on nursing school and her new border collie puppy, Wave.
 
Courtney’s training experience is very broad, as she worked at the Sea World in San Diego for a summer with the marine mammal trainers, using positive reinforcement to teach the dolphins, sea lions, and whales. She saw the benefits of using positive reinforcement and uses the same techniques with her dogs. She believes dog training with rewards is fun and helps build the trust and bond between the dog and the owner.  Ruffgers is grateful to have such an experienced trainer on our team!