Training Staff


PhyllisWhat would you like your dog to do? Setting goals and identifying the small steps along the way will set you and your dog on the path to success. As the Training Director, I wear many hats. We will get to know each other right away as we talk about you and your dog and your partnership together. I have been teaching people and their dogs and training new instructors for 25 years. (Board Member and Treasurer)


RandyWhat was that noise? Who is that over there? Can your dog do what you ask out in the world of work and play? You will meet me when you and your dog are ready for some new challenges. Starting out as a volunteer more than 20 years ago, I soon became an enthusiastic class instructor. Now I am a Field Trip Instructor, focusing on you and your dog working together in public places. (Board Member and President)


CarolDropped your keys, a penny, can’t find the TV remote, or need your telephone? I know firsthand that a service dog can help. Zoe has learned to assist me just as my previous dog did. An instructor for many years, I will meet you later in your training as your Field Trip Instructor, when you and your dog demonstrate what a great team you have become. (Board Member and Secretary)


CarolineThat’s exactly right. Click! Good dog. Puppies are a sponge, soaking up learning with energy and abandon. Let’s put all that enthusiasm to work for you. Does your dog have a behavioral challenge? I began learning about positive training due to my own dog’s behavior issues. I volunteered at a shelter and have been teaching others to train their own service dogs for 10 years. You will meet me as your Instructor. I particularly enjoy working with beginners and introducing you and your dog to clicker training.


RebaSomeone’s at the door, let’s go see who it is. That’s the smoke alarm, let’s get outside right now! Our dogs can be our ears and save a life. Your dog can let you know someone has called your name or that a siren is coming down the street. I have been a service dog instructor for more than 15 years, teaching teams from the beginning stages to the certification level, and you will meet me as your Instructor. I have a special interest in working with the deaf and hard of hearing. (Board Member and Vice President)

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Our Clients Say

“The clicker training technique Savvy Canines teaches is very simple, yet powerful. Dogs actually enjoy learning tasks their partners want them to do when the clicker is used properly.”—George and “Rover”
"I am slowly getting back into the world as I recover from my neurological disorder, and this journey toward recovery has been greatly accelerated by training and living with my Service Dog. I spoke with people who had been devastated by their illnesses and had become virtual shut-ins, and I observed how training and living with a Service Dog changed them. Their lives were transformed by getting back into the world; these folks now have the confidence to “fight the good fight.” Then one day I saw that same confidence in myself. I now go just about everywhere with my Service Dog. I want to thank Phyllis Allan and Savvy Canines for being so amazingly kind and patient with me and my dog. I would definitely recommend Savvy Canines of Arizona to anyone who is considering training a Service Dog."—Bruce and “Elwood”
“The Savvy Canines trainers are knowledgeable, consistent, and competent and love dogs. Phyllis provides a flexible schedule, comes to my home, and the cost is reasonable and well worth it. The classes twice a month are great for Molly to meet other people and dogs and to show off what she has learned. Molly and I are very pleased with the training from Savvy Canines.”—Diane and “Molly”
"Working with Sarah is the most important thing in my life. The gentle, positive training of Savvy Canines continues to increase the amazing bond between us. As my disabilities increase, Sarah is learning new ways to help me, both at home and out in public."—Susan N. and “Sarah”
“Minnie and I have worked with Savvy Canines since its inception. From the first day Minnie has loved Phyllis and the training sessions with her. Minnie loves the challenges, the games (and the attention). The one service that sets Savvy Canines apart from other training programs is the individual attention to each client. They work around your schedule, find creative ways to get tasks accomplished, and do it all in a professional, caring way. Minnie and I LOVE the trainers and the time spent learning new tasks. Thank you Savvy Canines. You are pawsitively the BEST!”—Reva and “Minnie”
Our trainer has helped us establish a fantastic rapport with our dog! The clicker training has been great. Our dog is attuned to our needs and anticipates my commands for helping close doors on the cabinets and the refrigerator, and thoroughly enjoys adjusting the pedals on my wheelchair! We have been especially pleased with our trainer's willingness to work around our schedule because of my medical problems.—Mr. and Mrs. Larson
"We own and train Australian Shepherds, and when I became disabled, my wife thought I might benefit from a Service Dog. She made a call, and I was surprised when Phyllis Allen (whom I had seen on a TV program about service dogs) came to my house to tell us about the Service Dog training program. She explained the program, assessed my needs, and met the dog I intended to use for training. I was impressed that she would come to my home to meet us and to explain how the program worked. Phyllis is a superb teacher. Savvy Canines uses a positive training method called “clicker training.” Before I met Phyllis I had never used the clicker method, and I am now convinced that it is one of the best training tools for teaching a dog complex tasks. It is definitely a thing of beauty when your dog “gets it” and accomplishes a new skill."—Bruce and “Elwood”
“The positive reinforcement we get from trainers at Savvy Canines of Arizona is exceptional, always so patient and helpful. Chloe is a work in progress, but she does make life easier by picking up dropped objects. We could not have done this on our own.” —Susan and "Chloe"
“Kay (our instructor) is terrific in helping people understand their canine friends. She has a real understanding of dog behavior and is able to quickly tune in to what is going on in a human-dog relationship.” —Pamela H. and "Molly"
“Our instructor helps both human and animal understand and accommodate to one another. We were also impressed that Kay carries out her training sessions with a kind, gentle approach—even with the pet owner!” —Pamela and Roger H. and "Fred" and "Molly"
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