Rachel Woollven

Head trainer and behaviourist

My working life began in the substance misuse field after leaving university in 2001. For the next 13yrs I worked with addicts in the Criminal Justice System in prisons, rehab facilities and the community.

I did enjoy this phase of my life but I always knew deep down it wasn’t something I wanted to do forever. it was a depressing job at times as the success rate for change and the want to change was so low.

I’d always loved animals, especially dogs but was never allowed one growing up. I would always seek out friends and family who had dogs and spend hours playing with them, probably when I should have been doing other, more important things!

My first dog came into my life when I was a young adult in the form of a very bouncy, floppy eared Weimaraner called Henry. Due to my complete ignorance an through no fault of his own Henry proved to be a challenge to say the least!

Also, shortly after he came to live with me I had a serious car accident and broke my back, so I actually had nothing to do with him for around 18 months.

Two years later I separated from my partner and we had also acquired a rescue Rottweiler, Casey. I was left with two big dogs that I had never even walked by myself! During my recovery I had started to research dog training and behaviour methods, which became even more important once my partner left as I was determined not to rehome either dog.

In 2010 I completed my advanced diploma in Companion Animal Training and Behaviour a Canine Connection Company was born! I spent the next four years reducing my hours in the drugs world and building the business up and in 2014 left the world of drugs behind completely.

Fast forward six years, with lots of hard graft and more study Canine Connection Company is now a thriving dog training and walking adventure business in the heart of the canine community in Kent.

People often ask me what it is I love most about my job and its simply teaching owners that any form of training or behaviour work is a two way conversation between them and their dog. Once this happens the joy I get from seeing their relationship and connection blossom is priceless.

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