Karen Decker owned dogs all her life, but it wasn't until 1990 that destiny came to her
in the form of a male Rottweiller/Labrador mix named Kelso. Kelso looked a lot like a
Labrador but it soon became apparent that he possessed 100% Rottweiler breed traits.
At six months of age, Kelso was maturing into a very dominant and aggressive dog
with a very sharp defense drive who felt biting was the way to handle everyone.
Karen's options were simple: euthanize him or try to work through this problem.
Karen decided to try to work through his problems. It took months of training (and
protective clothing!), but the reformation was incredible. Kelso went on to be a
trusted companion, family member and guardian for the remaining 11 years of his life.
It was Kelso that sparked not only a passion for working with dogs but also an
unquenchable thirst for knowledge regarding working breeds. She also gained an
understanding of how breed traits affect a dog’s behavior, as well as understanding
each dog is different-based on their individual adrenaline system, central nervous
system, emotional sensitivity level and past history. (Because of Kelso, aggression of
all types is an area of expertise at P.U.P.S.)
Shortly after training Kelso, her passion and obsession led her to training full time.
All these years later, the obsession and passion are the same, but her knowledge and
expertise are now elite.
In 2001, Sue Slebodnik came to P.U.P.S. looking for a trainer whose philosophy and
standards of training met her own. Sue decided to train one of her four dogs with
Karen, then she trained the second, then third, then fourth. After that, much to
Karen's liking, she never left! She, too, shares a passion and obsession for working
with dogs. She has been training her own dogs for 17 years and has been training
with P.U.P.S. since 2001.
Since Sue already possessed a great deal of knowledge, experience and common
sense, she was a quick study to learn the intricacies of P.U.P.S’ philosophy and
methodology. She has proved a huge asset to P.U.P.S. Each class reaps the benefit of
both Karen and Sue's expertise during each class.
Karen's Dogs Barley and
|Karen's New Puppy, Beda (pronounced Bay-ja, meaning
Peaceful Protector in Czech). Bred by Van Den Heuvelk K9