Sarah Westcott – Head Trainer

Dog TrainerSarah Westcott, CPDT-KSA is the President of Doggie Academy, Inc., a Certified Professional Dog Trainer-Knowledge and Skills Assessed and co-author of the award-winning book Play Your Way to Good Manners: Getting the Best Behavior from Your Dog through Sports, Games, and Tricks.

Sarah teaches private lessons in your home or at the Brooklyn Dog Training Center, teaches group classes at the Brooklyn Dog Training Center, offers online training and is available for agility seminars and workshops.

Sarah officially launched Doggie Academy in 2007 after working with some of the top trainers in the United States to study the science of how dogs learn as well as how to be an effective teacher to their human companions. In 2009 she earned certification through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers as a Certified Professional Dog Trainer-Knowledge Assessed, then became one of the first people in the country to earn the Certified Professional Dog Trainer-Knowledge and Skills Assessed title.

Sarah is the founder of the Brooklyn Dog Training Center. She has worked as a Trainer for The Good Dog Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to training and certifying dogs for animal-assisted therapy as well as a Behavior Counselor at a multi-location Manhattan dog care facility. Working with rescue groups like the ASPCA, Sarah has fostered several behaviorally challenged dogs including an aggressive Maltese, a petrified Pit Bull and one puppy that was seized by Humane Law Enforcement after being left for dead in an abandoned house. She and her late dog, Charleston, volunteered as a therapy dog team for The Good Dog Foundation. Charleston was a Labrador Retriever rescued from the Humane Society of New York.

In 2019, Sarah & Kate published their award-winning book Play Your Way to Good Manners: Getting the Best Behavior from Your Dog through Sports, Games, and Tricks. It was named the 2019 Best Book in Training or Sports by the Dog Writers Association of America.

Dog Sports

Sarah enjoys training & competing with her dogs in a variety of dog sports, though agility is her primary focus. She first got involved in dog sports after she adopted Hank (a Labrador rescue who turned out to be 1/2 Redbone Coonhound). Hank taught her a lot about training challenging dogs. He passed away in 2019 and is greatly missed.

Hank RN AX AXJ MXP3 MXPB MJP3 MJPB OF CGC TKA APD ARCH RL1 RL2 RL3  earned titles in AKC agility, USDAA agility, AKC tricks, AKC Canine Good Citizen, AKC Rally Obedience and WCRL Rally Obedience. Sarah and Hank were honored to be amongst the competitors at the first Master’s Agility Championship at Westminster and were thrilled to win the 24″ Excellent Standard class. In 2017 he was ranked third in the country in WCRL Rally Obedience for Rally Level 3.

usdaa agility

Sarah has trained with some of the top agility handlers & coaches in the world including Frankie Joiris, Minna Martimo, Jessica Ajoux, Soshanna Dos, Perry DeWitt, Stefanie Rainer, Janita Leinonen, Jaakko Suoknuuti, Timo Liuhto, Tuulia Liuhto, Marko Makela, Rebecca Thrift and Elina Jänesniemi.

Sarah is now competing with her Border Collie Fever (Speedoggie Going To Need More Cowbell). Fever AX AXJ OF DN CGC TKA MAD BID SSB has earned titles in AKC Agility, USDAA Agility, UKI Agility, AKC Tricks, Canine Good Citizen and Dock Diving. Sarah and Fever also enjoy training in sheep herding and disc dog. In 2018, Sarah & Fever competed at the Border Collie National Specialty at Purina Farms in Gray Summit, MO. They placed in several events and earned their Open FAST title there.

agility dogs

In 2019, she & Fever traveled to Finland to train at OneMind Dogs International Week and competed in some Finnish competitions while they were there. That year, the team also competed at the Cynosport World Games, US Open and European Open Team Tryouts.

riddle puppySarah is also currently training her puppy Riddle (Speedoggie What The Dormouse Said) in agility foundation skills. Riddle is Fever’s niece, but she is a very different dog. Sarah is having to change up her training routines for this little spitfire!

In addition to titles in AKC agility, USDAA agility, UKI Agility, AKC Rally Obedience, WCRL Rally Obedience, AKC tricks and Dock Diving, Sarah has also titled dogs in Barn Hunt and qualified in AKC lure coursing and UpDog Challenge.

Sarah is available for seminars and lessons in all levels of agility. 

Television & Print

Fever & Hank posing for The Body Shop

Charleston filming Law & Order

Sarah also works as an on-set animal handler for film, television and photo shoots. Charleston appeared as a cadaver dog in an episode of Law & Order and Hank has appeared in an episode of The Hunt with John Walsh. Fever was seen in an episode of Blacklist:Redemption in early 2107, in a commercial on Animal Planet that aired during the 2018 Puppy Bowl and is featured in several episodes of the Netflix show Seven Seconds as a shelter dog named Whiskey.

See our Media page for more appearances.

As a full-service dog trainer and behavior counselor, Sarah draws from her extensive toolbox to craft a unique lesson plan for each client based on their needs and goals. She believes that training should be fun for both dog and human so that the journey is just as rewarding as the results.

 

 

Services offered