Meet The Trainers
Kristen Belshaw, Owner/Trainer
Kristen Belshaw (formerly Askey), the Owner of Sunny Dogs Training Company, is a resident of the Myrtle Beach area of South Carolina, and has been training dogs formally since 2006. Kristen received her training certification from Animal Behavior College (ABC), which provided her with the background to what what she already knew - how to work with dogs and enjoy a fulfilling relationship with a dog in the family setting. Additionally, Kristen is a certified evaluator for the AKC Canine Good Citizen(R) (CGC) program, and a Mentor Trainer for ABC. With her training expertise, personal experiences, and instincts as a dog owner, Kristen brings a compassionate and knowledgeable approach to dog training. Please visit Kristen's Sunny Dogs blog to learn more about her approach and experiences.
Kristen's passion has always been with "saving the dogs". The number one cause of canine death in the United States is euthanization. Since she can't save them all - and none of us can - she does her part as a forever mom of rescued dogs, and trains dogs so that folks who love their dogs will not need to surrender them due to behavioral problems. Kristen enjoys working with the families she meets and has built a wonderful family of successful Sunny Dogs trainees over the past few years.
A native of Massachusetts and graduate of Boston University's College of Communication, Kristen began her quest to work with dogs when she adopted nine-month old German Shepherd Dog, “Hilde”. Hilde was intelligent, excitable, vocal, protective, and just a bit haughty. Hilde’s life pre-adoption was one that allowed her to do whatever she wanted — anytime, anywhere, anyhow. Obedience classes became a must so that Hilde’s strong and stubborn persona wouldn’t dominate her new human household and parents. Those classes were what helped Kristen build a stronger bond with Hilde based on better communication and obedience, while teaching and providing Hilde some structure in which she could live loyally and happily in their home. Kristen wholeheartedly believes in the importance for dog owners to find this balance with their dogs so they too can reap the valuable benefits and joy of their dog’s unconditional love.
Since 2006, Kristen has met and worked with hundreds of people in the Grand Strand area and surrounding locales, including clients, humane society volunteers, fellow pet professionals, kennel clubs, and anyone. If there is something that she can assist with to make a person's life better with his/her dog, she is happy to help.
Amanda Gipe, Trainer
Amanda Gipe is a dog obedience trainer who resides in Myrtle Beach, SC. A native of upstate New York, Amanda has a Bachelors degree in Psychology from the University of Albany. Upon receiving her degree and moving to the Myrtle Beach area with her family, she chose to follow her passion for animals and pursue a career in dog training. Amanda received her dog training certification from Animal Behavior College, with Kristen Belshaw as her dog training mentor, and loves working with and being around all animals. She has a passion for helping animals and provides an empathic and compassionate approach to dog training. Amanda is dedicated to providing knowledge to help improve the lives of not only the pet dog, but the owners as well.