|Cherie Inherited Some of Her Connection With Animals From
Her Mom and her Aunt
|Cherie Maitland - Training Director, Behavior Specialist, trainer, prior Pet Partners and Lend a Heart
Therapy Dog Team, CGC Evaluator, and owner of Our Furry Friends since 1999 - is an animal lover
and educator from way back. She moved to California from Vermont in 1984. Her varied work
background includes personal coaching and counseling, small business management, accounting,
teaching and running kids after-school and summer camp programs.
Cherie began working with dogs at the SPCA as a volunteer in the 1980's on the California Coast.
In the early 1990's she was introduced to the world of humane horse handling and Natural
Horsemanship. It made so much sense to Cherie to train and guide a horse by understanding their
point-of-view, that she sought out people who were doing the same thing with dogs. She assisted
with dog training classes, behavior problem appointments and went back to the shelter as a
volunteer adoption counselor and dog handler. She studied and trained with a variety of other
trainers from a wide range of philosophies. After adopting a "problem" dog, (who became the
wonderful dog you might have known as Pepper,) Cherie needed the behavioral expertise of several
local, prominent trainers. After years of studying with and assisting other trainers, and working with
dogs at the shelter, Our Furry Friends was born in 1999 in Santa Cruz, California.
Cherie helps families teach their dogs to be well-behaved members of the family. She teaches
effective and humane methods for basic obedience and a wide variety of other types of classes
including Agility For Fun, Training for Therapy Dog Visits, Helping the Cautious Canine, Feisty Fido and
more. Ms. Maitland also offers classes to help people prepare to take and pass the AKC Canine Good
Citizen Test. Cherie is also an approved AKC CGC evaluator. Cherie helps with more serious
problems including fearfulness, anxiety, aggression towards people, dogs and cats, nuisance barking,
and safety with kids and dogs. She hails more from the new school of training, incorporating learning
theory and understanding canine psychology (see Philosophy & Methods) to teach people to be
great dog owners, handlers and leaders. When needed, other approaches are incorporated, because
she believes that there is often something valuable to learn from most approaches and that flexibility
and tailoring methods to a specific owner, dog and situation is crucial. Cherie's instincts about what
people and their dogs need to be a better team, combined with her practical knowledge and
step-by-step teaching style is extremely effective.