About Wingham Pet Motel

Ros, Mike and their Fur Babies

With her intense interest in animal behaviour and training, owner-operator Ros with her partner Mike have created a rich environment for boarding dogs, with comfort & safety the priority – as well as plenty of enrichment, choice and importantly, fun for everyone! You rarely see them walking dogs on leads – instead the dogs follow because they know they will always be rewarded for their good choices.

In the carefully sanitised, vet-approved Puppy Square, Ros and budding trainer Tess have Puppy Playschool classes for dogs with their first vaccination who start aged 8 to 10 weeks of age.
The dogs who have gone through this socialisation programme are extremely comfortable boarding at the Pet Motel – and have a great time playing with other dogs due to their early socialisation.

Ros and Mike take two months annual leave each year and their housesitter family stays on the property and no animals are boarded.
During this time Ros travels to international dog behavioural training conferences and they both try to check off at least one of their bucket list of the world’s best snorkelling spots.

About Ros

  • Former Editor Dog’s Life magazine (DogsLife – Dog Breeds and Pet Care – Dogslife. Dog Breeds Magazine), Sydney, Australia & journalist on National Dog & Cat magazines, Sydney
  • Kennel attendant for Guide Dogs at the Royal NZ Foundation for the Blind
  • Coordinator and trainer of volunteers at Peninsula Animal Aid Shelter, Queensland
  • After three decades working with the often heartbreaking situations of rescue dogs, Ros is now passionate about reducing the large number of surrendered dogs by encouraging early puppy socialisation and owner education and training and Covid enabled her to further her studies (see below).
  • In her spare moments, she enjoys clicker training and dance routines with her canine guests —  and sometimes they end up in television ads like this Boris the Hungarian Vizsla shoots a commercial | Manning River Times | Taree, NSW

Professional development
To keep up with scientific advances in dog behaviour and training, Ros regularly engages in continuing education. Too many to list but here are a few workshops, webinars and conferences:

Monthly By Your Side Coaching with amazing UK dog trainers & behaviourists Chirag Patel and Lynn Harrison

Socialization: Raising Bold & Resilient Learners for Life, Laura VanArendonk Baugh

Puppy Start Right Course for dog trainers – Karen Pryor Clicker Training | The Leader in Positive Reinforcement Training
The Developmental Stages of Puppies – Eve LaforestDesensitisation & Counter Conditioning, Nancy Tucker, Fenzi Dog Sports Academy
Magic Mat Training with Julie Daniels Fenzi Dog Sports Academy

Ros is studying with the highly respected American dog trainer Susan Smith with whom she has weekly Zoom meetings. Discussions with the trainers group include how to ensure the Pet Motel boarding dogs are as happy and content as they can be. Ros will soonb have her knowledge assessed by the CPDT-KA (Certification for professional dog trainers and behavior consultants (ccpdt.org), an internationally recognised recognised certification for top-tier trainers around the world. There are only around 20 CPDT-KA trainers in Australia, so she’ll be very happy to be able to put those letters after her name!

Other courses & seminars:
Train this First – The shortlist for your new puppy – Julie Daniels
Adolescent behaviour and development – Chris Pachel
Come! The Art & Science of Recall Training – Chrissi Schranz
Capturing Behaviour – Michele Pouliot
FDSA & IAABC’s The Lemonade Conference – International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (iaabc.org)
The ABC’s of Animal Training and Behavior. Eduardo Fernandez PhD PPG

* Puppy Schools Essentials seminar for dog trainers – Dr Jen Nesbitt-Hawes BVSc (Hons) MVSt (Wild Med) MANZCVS (Vet Behaviour), Sydney (Dr Jen writes the cirriculum for many Australian veterinary clinic puppy preschool classes)
* Learning About Learning with Dr Susan Friedman (Welcome to BehaviorWorks.org) & Peta Clark (Peta Clarke – YouTube) – 4 day workshop Riverwood Downs
* Australian Association of Professional Dogtrainers (aapdt.org) Conference, Hunter Valley, NSW

About Mike

Mike is so passionate about dogs having fun, he can motivate even the most lethargic pet to play. He is devoted to making sure people are really ready to become puppy owners and is an entertaining speaker on the subject.

Mike is the Kennel Manager for the large dogs, devoted cat and rabbit and guinea pig carer, as well as taking care of the computer geek stuff and endless maintenance on the property. In his past life, he was Mike was a Railway Engineer and then Head Chef at two London restaurants.

Ros and Mike have 16 fur babies of their own, a Miniature Dachshund called Maggie, a Maine Coon, two tabby cats as well as rescued chooks and sheep, which are highly trained, just like the dogs!

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Our Boarding Dogs are TV Stars