Welcome!

Big Paws Up is dedicated to helping owners and dogs create happy “packs”. 

There are really only two reasons anyone does anything, either because they have to, or they want to.  When one has to do something, they will look for any excuse not to do it.  When one wants to do something, they will do it whenever possible.  At Big Paws Up, my goal is for your dog to want to work with you.  Once that is achieved training will no longer be a battle of wills but a game and fun for everyone involved.  To reach this end, I will try just about anything from treats to toys to games.  I use positive reinforcement techniques to encourage and praise the dog in any situation.

I also do not believe that all dogs should act exactly the same.  A terrier will be feisty, a lab is generally love-y, and a border collie has boundless energy.  We fall in love with these qualities in our dogs and I do not believe they need to be trained out, so every dog ends up a cookie cutter of the one before and the one after.  The personality of each dog should be embraced and worked with so the dog you fell in love with can always be with you.

Finally, Big Paws Up only provides private lessons in the dog’s home.  This not only allows me to see the dog’s true nature and personality but it also allows a training plan to be customized to individual needs.  What is acceptable and expected will vary from home to home and I feel a training program should focus on those individual needs.

Who Am I?

Hi, I’m Cathy “Kitty” Hobgood and I have spent my life around dogs.  I think the longest I have ever lived without a dog is 6 months.  I have had all types of dogs, from terriers to spaniels and a variety of mutts.  I also enjoy working with dogs.  I have helped friends train their dogs.  I seem to have a knack for getting them to listen to me (dogs not people).

I knew I needed to make a change in my life and working with dogs seemed like the right direction.  I decided to invest in myself and enrolled in Animal Behavior College.  I completed my ABC Dog Training certification in October 2010 and Big Paws Up was born.