Dana Vachon grew up in a family of animal enthusiasts. After graduating college at TCNJ, she worked for several years in technology and project management, always longing to move into the world of animal behavior. In 2011 Dana took the plunge and began working as the resident puppy expert at Philly Unleashed.
In 2012, Dana earned her CPDT-KA (Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed). Dana currently works with Philly Unleashed specializing in coaching dog owners through their dog’s life stages from early development and adolescent behavior into adulthood. In 2016, her talents were recognized when she was asked to film an instructional video through TawzerDog on building and running a safe, fun, and effective puppy curriculum.
Dana also specializes in canine anxiety issues, in particular separation anxiety, agoraphobia, and low stress handling for dogs who suffer from trauma after being trained using aversive or harsh methodology.
Dana is an AKC, Canine Good Citizen Evaluator, and currently co-instructs the Shelter Behavior Rotation for the University of Pennsylvania’s Matthew Ryan School of Veterinary Medicine.
In addition to training dogs, Dana volunteers at the Philadelphia Zoo, where she works in animal care, learning husbandry and positive reinforcement training in an effort to promote low-stress handling for the animals at the Zoo.
Dana resides in South Philadelphia with her rescued pit bull, Fawkes, and two cats, Olive and Jasper.