About Us


Raising Canine is dedicated to providing quality, science-based education and business services to animal professionals, so they are able to dedicate their time to enhancing the owner-animal relationship.


Raising Canine uses science based methods for the training and behavior modification of animals. Our goals are to make training as fun as possible for the animal and the owner; to resolve behavior problems without doing any harm; and to keep animals in their homes and out of shelters. We are committed to turning the profession of animal consulting into a respected and educated field. To accomplish this goal, we are actively involved in various professional organizations including the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT), the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers (CCPDT) and the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC). We believe in and are committed to a national certification for trainers as well as formal education and continuing education for all animal consultants. We work with both owners and consultants to educate and help in every way we can.


Through her emphasis on professionalism and fascination with behavior, Susan provides clients with a comprehensive but incisive review of contemporary dog training, its foundations, current state and future trends – and strategies for working in the field.

Susan is the co-author of Positive Gun Dogs: Clicker Training for Sporting Breeds, the first book published in the United States advocating positive methods for training bird dogs. She is the author of many articles including Starting Your Own Dog Training Business and When to Ask for Help, which were published in the Association of Pet Dog Trainers’ The Dog Trainer’s Resource: The APDT Chronicle of the Dog Collection. She is a contributing author for the book “Top Tips from Top Trainers.” She has authored many other articles and book reviews, and is also the author of a column on learning and behavior for the APDT Chronicle of the Dog.


  • CPDT-KA from the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers;
  • CDBC from the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants; and
  • CTC from the San Francisco SPCA.


  • Curent member Review Panel Committee for the IAABC;
  • Current member Advisory Board for the CCPDT;
  • Former List Manager for the APDTlist (8 years);
  • Former Membership Coordinator for the IAABC;
  • Former member of the Board of Directors of the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers;
  • Past Chair of the APDT Member Relations and Communications Committee;
  • Past committee member for the APDT Member Relations and Communications Committee; and
  • Past member of the APDT Sponsorship Committee.

Susan spent 3 years running a sanctuary for unadoptable, primarily aggressive, dogs. The sanctuary was limited to 15 dogs and the dogs lived in the house with Susan. This was a most enlightening experience, and provided an understanding of what clients experience when living with an aggressive dog. Susan currently lives in Austin, Texas with her dog, Jimmy Joe, where she runs her Internet-based education and consulting business.

Our Start

Sue&JA-CroppedSusan Smith was born and raised in Alaska. At age 29, she decided it was time to experience the rest of the U.S., so she moved to Texas and opened a Mail Boxes Etc., USA franchise in Austin, Texas. The MBE store gave Susan a good, practical education in running a business.

In the early ‘90s, Susan decided it was time to do something else, so she began exploring her options. She had three criteria: ability to make a comfortable income, flexibility of scheduling and a sense of enjoyment and accomplishment within her work. She was able to eliminate most of the list she came up with through the “enjoyment” factor; however, dog training met all her criteria.

She began apprenticing, reading and training. By 1996 she had sold her business and was building her animal consulting business.

In 2002 she moved to upstate New York to start a sanctuary for unadoptable dogs for the Animal Haven shelter in Queens. Animal Haven had purchased a 30 acre farm and the goal was for the dogs to live in the house with a lifestyle as close to “normal” as possible with aggressive dogs.

After three years, during which she got the sanctuary up and running, Susan decided to return to Austin and started thinking about what she wanted to do when she returned. She began consulting with a business coach, defined her criteria and began thinking about what she wanted to accomplish. She came to the conclusion that she wanted to maintain her original three criteria (comfortable income, flexibility and enjoyment), and added the criteria of helping her chosen field become a viable and respected profession.

This led Susan to provide remote, science-based training, consulting and business education to trainers, as well as providing a variety of products to help trainers more efficiently run their business.

A Growing Reputation

Raising Canine was the first business to provide a wide variety of remote courses and seminars to the animal training field. These courses provide high-quality, science-based information for training and consulting, as well as established principles for running a business.

Susan and Raising Canine have been able to attract quality speakers who, through remote media, are able to reach a wider audience for a very reasonable price. The remote courses are available live, recorded and on-line. Some courses are simply a lecture format, some are interactive, some require homework, and some are a combination of several media.

In 2018 Susan decided it was time for another change, so she picked up roots and moved to Arizona, where she continues to run her education-based business.

Raising Canine Today

Raising Canine’s goal has always been to provide quality education, products and services to animal professionals. We have solidified that goal through the creation of a mission statement that keeps it in the forefront of our minds, at all times.

Today, Raising Canine is still the largest and best known remote education service within the animal community. We continue to provide cutting edge information to trainers, and have expanded our clientelle to all species – not just dogs.

Even today, with our vast understanding of behavior and learning, there is still much misunderstanding of this subject within the training world. Raising Canine feels that all animals should be treated humanely and with the most advanced techniques available, and it is our goal to disseminate that information to animal professionals.