Activity Weekend 2020

We are delighted to be running our annual Activity Weekend at a new venue this year. Please find full details below, we hope that you can join us

Moulton College, West St, Moulton, Northampton NN3 7RR

Saturday 30th May and Sunday 31st May 2020


Guest Topic Class Type Location No. tickets
Saturday 30th May
Chirag Patel Teaching with Kindness, Creativity and Science Lecture Theatre 69
Jane Ardern Impulse control Practical Field 1
Sandra Fraser Training the Assistance Dog Practical Classroom 4
Saturday 30th May – APDT AGM – 5.00 – 6.00pm in the Barn – Members Only
BONUS – 7.30pm
Susan KcKeon Untangling the Web: The Why, What and Wherefore of digital marketing After dinner Talk Theatre Open to all
Sunday 31st May
Sarah Fisher Animal Centred Education (ACE) Free Work Lecture Theatre 93
Gemma Fisher Focus with distractions Practical Field 0
Jane Ardern Proofing Behaviour Practical Classroom 0

Read full details on our guest speakers and their workshops below.



(includes tea and coffee)
Spectator (practicals only) B&B
Lunch  Dinner
£95 per day £25 – 1 day

£40 – 2 day

£40 – Single
£65 – Twin
£10 per day £10 per day



To book on to our Activity Weekend please:

1) Complete the form here

2) Submit payment here

You will then be sent full confirmation.


Further information:


Timetable for Saturday and Sunday:

Please note that all workshops are full day events so you can only attend one each day.

  • Registration 9.00 – 9.30am
  • Morning session 1 – 10.00 – 11.30am
  • Break 11.30 – 11.45am (Tea)
  • Morning session 2 – 11.45am to 1.00pm
  • Lunch – 1.00 – 2.00pm
  • Afternoon session – 2.00pm – 4.00pm


Saturday additional events:

AGM – 5.00 – 6.00pm – Members only

Marketing talk – 7.30pm – 8.30pm – free to attend


Meal times (pre-booking required)


Breakfast – 8.00-9.00m (Saturday and Sunday)
Lunch 1.00-2.00pm (Saturday and Sunday)
Dinner 6.00-7.00pm (Friday and Saturday)


Activity Weekend Tutors


Chirag Patel

Teaching with Kindness, Creativity and Science

About Chirag


Chirag entered the field professionally in 2004 and has since become a leading figure in the profession internationally. He consults on the behaviour management and training of all animals living under human care including (pets, zoo and laboratory animals). Chirag is passionate about the application of ethical behaviour change science to improve the life of animals living under human care by teach animals to be active participants in their own daily and veterinary care in a low stress manner.


About Chirag’s Workshop

During this workshop we will spend the half of the day discussing and exploring ways to working with clients, inspiring behaviour change, “dealing with difficult clients” and coaching skills. The other half looking exploring practical common training exercises taught in many classes and 121 lessons. We look at fun and creative way to teach these exercises and skills in lessons in a way that is easy for clients to follow and understand. This workshop will allow opportunity for you to ask questions and discuss these topics throughout the day.



Jane Ardern

Impulse control

About Jane


Jane owns Wagga-Wuffins Canine College. She has been training dogs for over 20 years and has been working full time as a professional for over 13 years.

Jane has a BSc (Hons) in Canine Behaviour and Training from Hull University, an Advanced Diploma in the Practical Aspects of Companion Animal Behaviour and Training and CAP2.

She is the Kennel Club Accredited Instructor Scheme Dog Trainer of the Year 2015 a prestigious award presented to her at Crufts 2016 in March.

Jane has a City and Guilds Award in Education and Training.

She is a member of The Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT UK) Membership no. 1058 and a Registered Animal Trainer with the Animal Training and Behaviour Council (ATBC).

She shares her home currently with five dogs, a 13 year old polish lowland sheepdog Snoopy, and four working cocker spaniels, Pickles, The Stig, Mia and Drift.

Jane breeds Working Cocker Spaniels under the Riverirk Affix and works them regularly through the season.

About Jane’s Workshop

Planning Effective Training Sessions for High Performance

Behaviour Assessment improving Precision Latency and Speed

Changing Cues 


Building Sequences, Chains and Merges

Shaping Body Awareness 

Handlers should bring:

Clickers, Treats, Toys



Sandra Fraser

Training the Assistance Dog

About Sandra


Chair of the charity Dog Assistance in Disability (Dog A.I.D.) Helping physically disabled people become more independent by helping them train their own pet dog to become an Assistance Dog.


Assessor and tutor for The APDT . Been an APDT member since its conception in 1995. Looking forward to retirement to have more time to train more dogs!


About Sandra’s Workshop


In their shoes’ using props you will gain an insight into how a physically disabled person copes with the every day issues and then learn to train a dog! With your own dog you will learn the basics of task training. 


Sarah Fisher

Animal Centred Education (ACE) Free Work

About Sarah

Sarah Fisher is a canine and equine behaviour advisor. She has worked with animals for over twenty years and is the founder of Animal Centred Education. She is experienced with a wide range of breed types and teaches staff workshops for many of the UK’s animal welfare organisations including Battersea. She has also worked in Europe teaching staff workshops for shelters including SPCA Malta and GIA (Romania) and has taught workshops and clinics for dog trainers and behaviourists in Holland, Greece, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, South Africa, Ireland, Romania and Poland.

Sarah gives presentations on a variety of topics at dog training and behaviour seminars in the UK and abroad, and is a regular speaker at the annual Dog Behaviour Conference. She also conducts behaviour assessments for private clients, animal welfare organisations and court cases.

Sarah is a published author and has participated in numerous television and radio programmes over the years including the recent Nightmare Pets SOS for BBC1. She runs Animal Centred Education (ACE) courses for trainers, groomers, veterinary nurses, physiotherapists and animal behaviour counsellors who wish to broaden their expertise by learning detailed observations combined with Free Work, and a blend of techniques inspired by animals and by other professionals working in the world of animal welfare and behaviour.

About Sarah’s Workshop

This seminar will include a mix of Power Point and practical demonstrations. The day will focus on ACE Free Work, detailed observations and appropriate learning exercises at a pace to suit each dog.


Free Work is a simple, low impact activity that can be rewarding for the dog, and illuminating for the guardian/care giver; it can be set up in any environment.

The aim is to give the dog opportunities to engage with a variety of different items enabling guardians and care-givers to highlight items the dog really enjoys, and those he actively avoids.

For example, a dog may avoid soft textures under foot because:

  1. a) The surface is novel and new experiences can sometimes make all beings feel unsafe (the dog may have lived in a kennel, or a barren environment and never experienced the sensation of different textures underfoot).
  2. b) Standing on something soft creates more movement in the joints and soft tissue which may be uncomfortable due to undiagnosed pain/discomfort.
  3. c) The dog had a bad experience when moving on something soft that may not have anything to do with the actual surface but the dog has paired (associated) that sensation under foot with something that made the dog concerned.

As the dog starts to relax and slow down, postural struggles, habits, and worries about handling or other aspects of daily life become more apparent enabling guardians and caregivers to modify their own habits and address these small, or more obvious, concerns. Sometimes it is our own habits that create the behaviours in our animals we wish to modify.

Stripping everything back and giving the dog complete freedom of choice enables dogs to reset, rebalance and release. It also gives the guardian the opportunity to gather data from the dog whilst the dog is at liberty to gather data from the environment. This low impact exercise can help to improve the posture and ensure the dog works every muscle in his body without engaging in fast, arousing games.

Using a blend of different textures, scents and tastes helps to engage the sensory part of the nervous system. Placing treats on objects of varying heights can help to improve posture and release tension in the neck, back and hindquarters.

Free Work can help dogs to settle and calm and has been beneficial for some dog with noise sensitivity as they focus more on what they smell, eat and feel rather than focusing purely on what they hear; a dog that is more relaxed through the body will be more relaxed on an emotional level too.


Gemma Fisher

Focus with distractions

About Gemma

Gemma Fisher is a professional dog trainer who specialises in:


– Puppy Development

– Dog Behaviour

– Agility Training & Handling for Competition


She has a vast amount of experience in raising puppies into amazing family pets. Plus they make incredible agility competition dogs too. Her local training business, Daybreak Dogs, served the local community from 2008 after the birth of her first son, through to September 2019.


The innovative training workshops & seminars she provides take place at venues across the UK.


About Gemma’s Workshop


Would this workshop work for you?

Struggle to get your dog to focus in busy areas?

Does your dog think EVERYTHING is their business?

Would you like more control of your dog when they get excited?

Then this workshop is for YOU!


What will it cover? Gemma will be delving into her highly acclaimed Inbetweener Dogs online dog training program toolkit. You will learn..


  • Simple games to add into your life with your dog
  • Training exercises to improve your dog training skills
  • Bombproof ways to get and keep your dogs attention – no matter the distraction


Here’s what’s possible with the Inbetweener Dogs games – meet Sarah & Zuri, from her online program:



My dog is so easily distracted and doesn’t do well in a group class – can I spectate instead?

You will learn lots of valuable information by both taking part with your dog, or watching as a spectator too.



Susan KcKeon

Untangling the Web: The Why, What and Wherefore of digital marketing
(Bonus after dinner talk – Saturday 7.30pm)


About Susan

Susan is a qualified marketing communications professional with over 27 years’ experience working with a wide range of businesses. She is also an experienced dog trainer and behaviourist who specialises in working with sighthounds, especially ex-racing greyhounds. 


She ran a successful behaviour and training business for eight years, providing behaviour consults, training classes and workshops, and in 2017 ran a series of successful marketing webinars designed for dog trainers. Currently, she works for Dogs Trust as a Clinical Animal Behaviourist, providing behaviour consultations to adopters of Dogs Trust dogs who require more specialist input for behaviour issues.


Susan is a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, the Institute of Direct and Digital Marketing, APDT, and a registered Animal Training Instructor with ABTC. She lectures on marketing and business-related topics for dog trainers and is also a regular speaker at conferences and workshops.

Susan shares her home with her husband, Sean, their three dogs, Ava (Greyhound), Sherlock (Saluki), and Dobby (Saluki x Greyhound), and Matilda, their cat.


About Susan’s Talk


Focusing on digital marketing and untangling the intricacies of the web, Susan will provide a whistle-stop tour of:


  • The digital landscape: why digital marketing matters
  • Being found online (for the right reasons!)
  • What makes a good website?
  • SEO, PPC, CTA, CTR – simplifying the digital alphabet soup
  • Choosing the right channel – why less is more
  • Email marketing – how to avoid being junked or marked as spam
  • Social networks – managing the wormhole of social media
  • Practical and free resources