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Meet the team!

Owner and Head Trainer
Megan Wallace (She/her), B.S., CNWI, CCUI

Megan Wallace, NOCO Unleashed's owner and head trainer, sitting outside on the grass and smiling with her black and white border collie Tori. Megan is wearing glasses and her brown hair is pulled back out of her face in a loose ponytail. She is wearing a light pink T-shirt and blue jeans.
Megan working one of her black and white border collies on some goats in a large dirt ring

Megan has been training dogs since age 11 when she attempted to certify her family dogs as therapy dogs. While the family dogs were a bit old to pursue new careers, being 11 and 13, Megan was at the start of a lifelong passion for dogs which eventually became her career. This passion led her into the world of dog behavior and training, and started a quest for knowledge that has been never ending. With a gift for relating to people as well as their pets, Megan strives to find solutions to behavior problems that work as well for the owners as they do for dogs. She stays up-to-date with the most progressive dog training methods by attending seminars, reading training books, and taking classes with her own dogs.

 

Megan believes that training should be fun for the dogs and the owners, and strives to help every person find the joy in dog training. She does this by teaching straight-forward, dog-friendly methods that cater to the needs of all dog owners. Megan is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed (CPDT-KA) through the Certification Council of Professional Dog Trainers, and is a Certified K9 Nose Work Instructor (CNWI) through the National Association of Canine Nose Work, and a Certified Control Unleashed Instructor (CCUI). She also works with dog training professionals to learn how to run successful businesses as an Assistant Coach with The Modern Dog Trainer. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology from Colorado State University. She is a member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers and the National Association of Canine Scent Work.

In her free time Megan enjoys spending time with her husband James, and their three dogs, training and competing with them in a variety of dog sports, and enjoying the wonderful local Colorado music scene. She also enjoys volunteering at the Rocky Mountain Raptor Center, where she handles their educational ambassadors, as well as giving presentations. She continues her love of education by teaching the public about raptors, and how humans impact their lives. Her goal in life is to help humans and dogs (and all animals!) understand each other just a little better.

Certifications and Continuing Education Attended:

  • Sue Ailsby (Training)

  • Kay Laurence (Behavior and training)

  • Leslie McDevitt (Behavior and training)

  • Patricia McConnell (Behavior)

  • Jean Donaldson (Behavior)

  • Dan Estep and Suzanne Hetts (Behavior)

  • Amy Herot (Nose Work)

  • Leah Ganglehoff (Nose Work)

  • Dana Zinn and Sue Sternberg (Nose Work)

  • Dog Scout Camp, 2009, 2010, 2012

  • Clicker Expo 2012

  • Volunteered at Penn Vet Working Dog Center, April 2013

  • K9 Nose Work Camp, 2013, 2015, 2018, 2019

  • K9 Nose Work Instructor Certification Course, 2015

  • Certified in Pet First Aid by the American Red Cross

  • Art and Science of Animal Training Conference 2019

  • Virtual Nose Work Camp 2020

  • Certified Control Unleashed Instructor 2020

  • Certifying Official with the NACSW 2023

Administrator & Trainer

Skye Wiersma (They/them), IAABC-ADT, CCUI, CTDI, AKC Evaluator

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Skye is our Administrator and part of our trainer team! They are genderfluid and live with ‘invisible’ chronic illness, which is a short way of saying their disability isn’t always apparent to others. They are excited to be a part of a team that prioritizes queer and disabled people’s safety and inclusion in dog training. 

 

Skye grew up with pet dogs, but wasn’t active in the training world until they happened upon a dog trainer job opening at Petco in 2018. They fell in love and started reading, listening, and watching every dog- and dog training-related educational content they could get their hands on. Their passion has only grown over the years and Skye is now a Certified Control Unleashed Instructor, an Accredited Dog Trainer through the IAABC, an AKC evaluator, and a Certified Trick Dog Instructor with Do More With Your Dog. They love working one-on-one with our CU members and coming up with creative new set ups for group classes that mimic a variety of real world situations.

 

Outside of work, Skye spends the majority of their time working, playing, and learning with their two dogs, Newt and Juniper. Newt is a goofy, loving standard poodle and Skye's at-home service dog. He can have big, excited feelings about everything friend-shaped, so his public access training is currently on hold. He is also training to compete in NACSW Nose Work for fun! Juniper is Skye's adolescent German Shorthaired Pointer who they adopted in October of 2022. Juniper has given Skye invaluable insights and skills to work with dogs who have high exercise and hunting drive needs. Juniper is Skye's first dedicated sport dog and their favorite sport to play together is Barn Hunt. They also love lure coursing and are training to compete in Flyball, Nose Work, and Rally!

Certifications and Continuing Education Attended:

  • AKC Evaluator - 2018

  • Certified Trick Dog Instructor course through Do More With Your Dog - 2020

  • IAABC Accredited Dog Trainer - 2022

  • Leslie​ McDevitt's CCUI program - 2022

  • HeartDog International Wellbeing Summit - 2022

  • Resilience Rainbow Tour - Denver 2023

  • L.E.G.S. Family Dog Mediator - in progress

  • Decoding Your Canine Summit - 2023

  • Needs Must! Masterclass - 2023

  • KIENO Conference - 2022, 2023

  • Predation Substitute Training Instructor - in progress

  • Dr. Amy Cook (Behavior) - Courses, webinars

  • Sarah Stremming (Training & Behavior) - Courses, webinars, podcast, Patreon resources

Dog Trainer

Rachel Rairdon (she/her)

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Rachel started training and competing with dogs in obedience, rally, and agility when she was 8 years old through the 4-H dog program. She loved it so much she continued all the way through high school. When she started looking at career paths she realized that she was only interested in working with dogs, specifically in dog training, and that's what led her to NoCo Unleashed! Rachel has been interning with Megan and working towards her Certified Control Unleashed Instructor title for the past year and is now stepping into her new role as one of our trainers! She will also be supporting our amazing Nose Work teams when Megan is out of town.

Rachel loves to spend her free time with her dogs Kona, an 8 year old Border Collie Lab, and Aspen, a 9 month old Heeler Mix. She enjoys hiking with her dogs, training with her dogs in various activities and spending her time at local coffee shops.

Certifications and Continuing Education Attended:

  • Megan Wallace - Behavior & Nose Work mentor

  • Control Unleashed instructor certification - In progress

Dog Trainer

Doree Donovan (she/her) CNWI, NACSW Judge

Doree trainer profile

Doree is one of our Nose Work instructors! She and her husband live in Longmont, Colorado with three dogs and 9 ducks. They love living close to all three of their daughters and their one grandchild. Their Border Collies, Riot and Coco, keep the family on time and their Dutch Shepherd Nina protects the property from unwelcome rodents.
 

Doree has been a Certified Nose Work Instructor since 2012 and a NACSW judge since 2022. She has trained and competed with her dogs in K9 Nose Work, DSA IMPROV, dock diving, agility, obedience, and rally; but her greatest passion lies in search and rescue work. She certified three of her Border Collies as FEMA disaster dogs and was a member of Pennsylvania Task Force One and New Mexico Task Force One. Doree and Riot are certified by Search and Rescue Dogs of the United States (SARDUS) as a cadaver team (swift water, still water and land). She and Riot helped the clear neighborhoods after the Marshall Fire, working in freezing weather around smoldering foundations of destroyed homes. Doree and Nina are certified in Wilderness Airscent Type III (scent specific) and Urban Air Scent (scent specific) through SARDUS. Coco is in training for trailing and has her NW2 title.

Certifications and Continuing Education Attended:

  • Certified Nose Work Instructor - 2012​

  • NACSW Judge - 2022

Certifications and Education

Why do certifications matter?

You will notice that our trainers have letters behind their names, or are working towards them. While we do tell you exactly what those letters stand for, they still might not seem significant if you don’t know what’s behind these achievements. The truth is, the dog training industry is unregulated and even though our team doesn't need any of these letters to do their jobs, they represent a commitment to continuing education. Each of these certifications represents time spent learning new skills, making videos to prove our ability to teach these skills, studying for tests, communicating with mentors, and networking with out colleagues. We put in these hours of learning and mastering new skills in order to bring the most up-to-date knowledge on training and behavior, so that you and your dog will be successful in anything you do. Our promise to you is that we will always strive to bring you the best client experience possible!

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