Education is key at AWL NSW Narooma Dog Training Club

The local Narooma dog training club has provided work placement and much hope for young partially-sighted woman Caitlin Blay. 

Caitlin Blay with Yve Robinson’s dog, Tillie. Photo by Rosy Williams

Caitlin Blay with Yve Robinson’s dog, Tillie. Photo by Rosy Williams

Education is the key word that sums up the activities of AWL NSW Narooma Dog Training Club Branch (NDTC). 

Volunteers to this branch are primarily involved with one-on-one and group education of the general public and their companion dogs.

With 90 handlers registered for dog training in 2016, the benefits of NDTC to the broader community are both positive and immeasurable.

NDTC is fortunate to have as its founder and mentor, chief instructor Yve Robinson.  She has decades of experience in both dog obedience and agility instructing.

A couple of months ago Yve was approached by Caitlin Blay, a partially sighted young lady from Moruya. Caitlin’s goal is to become a qualified animal care attendant and run a cattery on her parent’s property. 

To achieve this goal, Caitlin is studying the Certificate IV in Companion Animal Services through the Open College. Part of the requirement of her course is practical, hands on experience with a variety of domestic animals.

NDTC was delighted to act as host organisation, providing a work placement for Caitlin, so that she can learn how to work with and handle dogs.

With the assistance of her supervisor, Tania Le Strange and all instructors at NDTC, Caitlin attended Saturday afternoon sessions at NATA Oval and completed 14 hours of ‘on the job’ training.

She participated in all levels of dog obedience classes, attended agility training, and most recently assisted and observed handlers day.

She also assisted with the mandatory health check that all dogs undergo prior to attending classes, handling dogs of all breeds, ages and sizes.  Plus she was shown how to fit leads, halters and other dog equipment that NDTC has on sale. 

Not forgetting the business side of animal management, Caitlin was guided through the registration paperwork, checking of vaccination certificates, and now understands the importance of the class sign-in and volunteer registers.

She was also given relevant written information, such council guidelines for dog ownership and details of the AWL NSW organisation, to compliment her learning.  

“Caitlin has a very calm, gentle manner which puts most dogs at ease and they are very happy for her to handle them,” Yve said.  “And most importantly, she now knows which dogs she shouldn’t touch in order to keep herself and others safe.”

Caitlin is very keen to learn and currently volunteers for Riding for the Disabled.

NDTC is proud to have been able to support Caitlin with her education and would, without hesitation, welcome her back to NDTC in 2017 as a volunteer assistant to Instructors.

For further information about AWL NSW Narooma Dog Training Club Branch, please ring 0458 953 281 or email or check out the NDTC Facebook page.