My life has pretty much always been about animals, and throughout my life I have been fortunate to have worked in several different countries with a wide variety of animal species. I graduated from New Mexico State University with a Bachelors of Science in Zoology and Psychology: and that degree fits perfectly in what I love to do which is observe, interact and train animals! Shortly after graduating I moved to Florida and began my first training job, working with Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, sea lions, seals, river otters, alligators and a variety of birds, turtles, and sharks. After about a year things changed dramatically and I moved with our 12 dolphins to Roatan, Honduras. I worked mainly with our open ocean program, where we train dolphins to follow a boat into the open sea for research, animal behavior observation and human interaction, led human interaction and educational programs and participated in wild whale and dolphin research.
When I returned to the US I met my husband, Barry Brown and we moved from New Mexico to South Dakota, where I had the wonderful fortune to meet Terry Besler, of Happy Tails Dog Training. Terry introduced me to Dr. Christine Teets and I began working as a vet assistant at All Cats-N-Dogs Hospital. I worked for Dr. T. for about 5 years and fell in love with the Rapid City area and outdoor life it offers I also worked for Happy Tails and taught a variety of dog training classes.
But, soon the ocean and the dolphins called me back again, and my husband and I moved to Curacao, Netherlands Antilles in 2004. While there I worked for Dolphin Academy and the Curacao Dolphin Therapy and Research Center. I worked with animal assisted programs, trained dolphins to do open water work, participated in sleep and circadian rhythm studies of mothers and their young, taught courses on dolphin behavior and anatomy and had the opportunity to meet a wide variety of people from all over the world. I also spent many years volunteering as a dog trainer and behaviorist for our local island street dog rescue organization CARF (Curacao Animal Rescue Foundation).
In December 2016, my husband and I moved back to the US, along with our three dogs: Inca 13.5 years, Indi 9 years and Joy 6 years. Inca is the Dalmatian we originally took with us to Curacao, and Indi and Joy are what we call “Curacao West-Pointers”, which are actually true mixed breeds and island street dog rescues. Well, Barry and I decided to call Rapid City home once again, and what a change it has been from a Caribbean island! As fortune would have it, I am once again working for Dr. Teets, but now for the new clinic, TLC Pet Hospital! I am also teaching dog training classes at Happy Tails and doing private dog training through my own business, Training Fido. So, I am very excited to be back with old friends, and have a great opportunity to meet new friends as well. I certainly look forward to meetig you and your four legged family menbers when you walk in our doors I will be the one saying “Bon dia, Con ta bai”, which in the island language means “Good morning, how are you?”
After receiving 3 bachelor degrees from the University of Wyoming in Animal and Veterinary Science, Agricultural Education, and Microbiology, I spent time as an Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources teacher, which involved coaching FFA CDE (Career Development Events) teams in Wyoming and South Dakota. I especially enjoyed working with the Veterinary Science CDE. Through this work, I decided that though I did enjoy teaching, I especially enjoyed Veterinary Medicine and started working on paths to spend more time in educating people on Veterinary Medicine specifically. This made it very easy to come and work at TLC Pet Hospital for Dr. Teets as she also greatly cares about education and preventative medicine.
My fiancé and I enjoy all sorts of outdoor activities from camping to ice skating even, working on remodeling our new home. When not working on house projects our animal children keep us very busy. We have 4 dogs (Mercer the German Shepard/Border Collie, Murphy the Border Collie, Regan the German Shepard Mix, and Bos the Great Dane), 4 horses (Princess, Moneymaker, Esméralda Emily, and Marlo), 13 chickens, 2 ducks, 5 rabbits (Charlie, Oliver, Cinnabun, Willow, and Celia Rosa), a Guinea Pig (Dominos), and a rat (Squeakers). And to my fiancés dismay or happiness more than likely more to come. (He is hoping for cows!). I am hoping for birds, as they are one of my passions.
I ultimately hope to continue my education in Veterinary Medicine as far as possible and I am taking classes to become a Registered Veterinary Technician and am going to be applying to Vet School in the Fall. So, I can continue to help all animals to be happy and healthy and animal parents to feel like they are educated about what is best for those special family members.