Nikki Vanderbeke is a dog trainer and dog agility trainer and competitor. She has 15 years of experience in training dogs to be well-behaved members of their family, as well as teaching our canine friends to excel in agility.
She uses positive reinforcement techniques in both agility training and dog training and is committed to education and growth in the field of dog training and agility. She attends several seminars a year and stays in touch with all the current techniques and science regarding dog training and agility training.
In addition to offering agility classes for all experience levels, she also coaches agility teams one-on-one, either as a replacement for classes, or to problem-solve any issues they might be having.
Her philosophy about agility training and competition is that it is not about the ribbons, it’s about having fun with your dog.
Meet My Dogs
My first agility dog ever was Billy. He was always so excited to work and absolutely loved agility. Unfortunately, right when my son was a little bit older and I was finally able to compete more often, he started having trouble with his rear-end. Turns out he had DM (degenerative myelopathy), which is genetic and thus far has no treatment. I had to retire him at 9 years old.
My second Pembroke Welsh corgi was Blaze. She also had structural issues and never got past Beginners level.
Not surprisingly I stepped away from corgis after this! Charm is an Australian shepherd and the sweetest girl ever. She is what we call "soft" and requires careful handling. But she sure loves that tug toy! She is currently the only dog I am competing with. Covid surely put a pause on my plans with her!
Jinx is our youngest. Still in his teens, he is a crazy, but sweet Border Collie. He loves, loves, LOVES to work, but like so many performance dogs/BC's, he has a problem with overarousal around the agility ring. I'm currently working on teaching him to stay under threshold when confronted with other dogs running agility. Once we get there, he should be good to go to start competing.