Hannah – Family Dog Service Instructor: I help families with any aftercare, whether it is advising on how to source a dog or puppy, how to encourage dog-child interactions, or how to create a safe space for your dog.  I also help to run the workshops that take place around the country.

My background is within education and over the last 6 years specifically with autistic children, within both a secondary mainstream school and an Autism Resource Base within a mainstream secondary school. I have grown up with dogs in the family, so I have now combined my love of dogs with my interest in Autism to do my dream job.

Robbie – Family Dog Service Instructor: I have a BSc in Psychology and have a real interest in autism. I have studied the characteristics and theories surrounding ASD, and conducted a major project looking at how autism affects the recognition of emotion in artwork. Alongside this, I have worked and volunteered at various groups for autistic adults and children.

For the past year, I have been working at a dog training centre and have assisted various trainers in teaching different dog sports and classes. From this I have gained a huge insight into the world of dog training and have started teaching my own puppy classes.

Working in the PAWS Family Dog team is providing me with a unique and exciting opportunity to combine my interest in autism and my love for dog training. I look forward to being involved in all the great work of the team.

Emmi – Family Dog Service Instructor: I have a Bachelor of Health care and a degree in Nursing, and I’ve worked with various different mental health disorders and different spectrums of autism. To continue my personal development I am currently studying for a Master’s degree in Psychology.

I have grown up with dogs and these days I train and compete with my own two furry babies. I have trained for various different dog sports and have gained great experience of different training methods and dog psychology.

Kate – Training Department Support OfficerI first joined the team in September 2011 and have enjoyed watching the service develop and grow into what it is today.  When I first started, I was involved with the research we did in the early days alongside the University of Lincoln, and the National Autistic Society funded by the National Lottery.

Over the years I have enjoyed following our Family Dog parents through their journey with their family dogs.  It is lovely to still be in touch with so many of them with our ongoing aftercare and private Facebook group.  Hearing all the good news stories makes all the hard work worth while.

My days are varied and busy, especially as I am now in a team which supports Dogs for Good’s training department.  My primary role is still with our Family Dog service and I deal with enquiries, sorting all the paperwork that goes alongside the workshops as well as arranging the catering at the venues we visit.

I feel very fortunate to work for such an innovative charity which enables me to help so many families and work in an office with dogs!  I look forward to welcoming many more families onto our Family Dog service and maybe meeting you in the future.