Stacy and Piña doing a therapy dog presentation at Clark Elementary School
Communicate and Educate!
Stacy's approach brings together her
doctoral studies of Educational Psychology and her vast experiences in teaching
and learning from humans, horses, and dogs.
Stacy has a
B.A. in English and Spanish Literature, an M.Ed in Curriculum and Instruction:
World Languages, and is “ABD” for a Ph.D in Educational Psychology. Her 16 years of teaching experience range from classes for 3 year-olds to graduate school students. She currently
holds a Spanish K-12 Post-Graduate teaching license with the Virginia
Department of Education and is the lead teacher in a local elementary and middle school Spanish program that
she started in 2008.
While she no longer considers herself a "horse girl," Stacy spent almost 30 years handling, riding, and training horses as well as managing horse farms, racing barns, and an equine veterinary clinic. Stacy showed her beloved mare, Sadie, whom
she owned for 12 years on the National circuit. She left the horse world soon after Sadie's passing.
Stacy has had a love for and a fascination with dogs all her life. She has fostered/owned many and handled countless
dogs. Stacy has worked
with multiple trainers in various different disciplines including basic to
advanced obedience, Tracking, Nosework, Protection, Agility, Rally-o, Wag it!, therapy work, and sheep herding. She has finished multiple dogs with their CGC title, also with various therapy dog titles, and she and her deaf Pit Bull, Luna, have earned their NW1 title and passed al 3 odor recognition tests. Stacy has been an active
volunteer, handler, evaluator, trainer, foster parent, and behavioral consultant/specialist for numerous local shelters and rescues.
Stacy and Luna doing therapy work
In 2011, Stacy started the Fluvanna Pit Stop, which was a part training, part Pit Bull rescue effort. In 2015, she changed her business to Maestra K9 Services. Through this program, Stacy consults with owners and foster families
regarding behavior and wellness. Her experiences and studies of how learning is best achieved lead her to an effective, positive instructional approach for humans as well as dogs, and she oftentimes brings one of her own dogs to assist her with evaluating and modeling appropriate canine behavior while she instructs the humans.
Stacy has been a member of the Pet Professional Guild and is currently a professional member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers. She has logged over 500 hours of consultations and is also an evaluator for the AKC Caring Good Citizen (CGC) test She continues her own education by participating in seminars, taking online courses, and reading books on various training/behavior modification topics. Stacy is also very active in the genre of therapy dogs, and has a huge interest in evaluating and helping dog-handler teams get certified and started on therapy work. Three of her six personal dogs are certified through Love on a Leash. They work with the Books on Bikes team in Charlottesville (http://www.booksonbikescville.org/) as well as with children in Charlottesville City Schools.
Stacy lives in
Fluvanna at Lake Monticello with her husband Antonio and their 56 dogs (3 Pit
Bulls, 1 Corgi, 1 Border Collie, and 1 Podenco from Spain.)
Professional Member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers