Dayna Desmarais, IAABC-ADT
I have always been an avid animal lover and advocate. I grew up always having cats and dogs in my life and as a teenager my mother started to foster for rescue dogs. This is where my deep admiration for animal behaviour work began. I most often took in animals who had just been rescued from severe cases of neglect. Since then I have worked hard to become educated on animal welfare, behaviour, and general animal care so that I can continue to help pets in need.
In 2015, I completed an apprenticeship to become a Canine Behaviour Consultant, and in 2023 I received the International Association of Animal Behaviour Consultants - Accredited Dog Trainer designation (IAABC-ADT). I am also a Certified Professional Pet Sitter (CPPS), and I have completed certificate programs in Canine Emotion & Cognition from Duke University as well as a certificate in Animal Behaviour & Welfare from the University of New Edinburgh. Although I have finished my formal education in behaviour science, I regularly attend seminars and workshops to continue to keep up with the ever changing science. My methodologies are positive, reward-based training and I do not encourage the use of prong, choke/pinch or shock collars.
Most recently, I have taken on the role of President & Executive Director for The FAM Network (formerly SafePet Ottawa) - a charitable organization in Ottawa helping families flee domestic violence by fostering their animals. I was also a member of Women for a Humane Canada and sat as a founding member on the National Link Coalition.
In 2020, I was so fortunate to be able to purchase a new business - CocoMutts (a pet retail and grooming salon) and grow it to new heights amidst a pandemic. Because of this new found passion for animal health and nutirion I am now actively studying to receive my certification in canine nutrition from the Companion Animal Sciences Institute.
I was honoured in 2018 to be presented with the inaugural CBC Ottawa Trailblazers award and with the Tsirmpa Award at the Ottawa Wedding Awards for my work to make a difference in Ottawa.
You'll often see me at different rescue/charity events throughout the city helping to raise funds for different animal rescue organizations. I have also fostered for many different groups including: Loyal Rescue, Catahoula Rescue and Sit With Me Shelter Dog Rescue.
I can't wait to meet you and your fur-kids!
- March 2017: Animal Rescue Corps Training (Spoke both days - Canine Body Language & Assessment Techniques)
- April 2017: National Animal Welfare Conference (Spoke on behalf of SafePet Ottawa)
- November 2017: Canadian Violence Link Conference (Spoke on behalf of SafePet Ottawa)
- April 2018: Natinal Animal Welfare Conference (Spoke about Standards & Guidelines in pet care)
- June 2018: National Women In Shelters Conference (Spoke on behalf of SafePet Ottawa)
- November 2019: Canadian Violence Link Conference (Spoke on behalf of SafePet Ottawa)
- March 2020: World Pet Sitter Conference (Spoke about consistency in brand)