(618) 344-4096 | 2330 South Center, Maryville, Illinois 62062

New Training Classes

New DAY Classes:

Basic Classes:
Tues., Aug 14th, 7 pm (Vicki)
Thurs., Aug 16th, 1 pm (Cindy)
Thurs., Aug 16th, 6:30 pm (Vicki)
Sat., Aug 18th, 10 am (Vicki)

Intermediate Classes:
Thurs., Aug 16th, 7:45 pm (Vicki)

Drop in Advanced:
Please call Cindy

Drop In Therapy Dog Class
Every Wed. @ 7:15 pm (Niki)
Every Sat. @ 12:15 pm (Niki)

Got Your Six Service Classes
Every Wed. @ 6:15pm (Niki)
Private, In-Home, Board and Train
also available.

Please call Cindy

618-344-4096 for info.

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Dog Training

Cindy’s Critter Camp is proud to have on site training and behavior modification, provided by Cindy, Vicki and certified professional dog trainer/behaviorist Niki. Cindy, Vicki and Niki will work with you and your dog to create a training program to address all of your dog’s training and behavioral needs.

Call Cindy’s Critter Camp at (618) 344-4096 for your pet’s personal training and behavior needs.

Classes Offered

Evaluations: Convenient appointments can be made for a private session to evaluate your dog’s behavior and discuss training recommendations.

Basic Manners: This five week class is for dogs from 12 weeks of age and older. We will help you resolve behavior problems and improve obedience! Cindy, Vicki and Niki’s programs use positive reinforcement to guarantee your dog’s training success. Your dog will develop social skills, and learn basic obedience skills such as sit, down, loose leash walking, come when called, holding commands with distractions, release command and climb/place. Problem solving for any and all behavioral issues: house training, jumping, bolting, etc., is always part of training. This class is also designed to prepare you for more advanced level training, up to competition level if desired. Training provides your dog with a fun challenge and an opportunity to build confidence and trust for you and your pet!

Intermediate Classes: This five week class is a continuation of the basic training class. Dogs will continue to develop skills learned in basic training with longer periods of holding the commands. You and your dog will learn new skills such as turns and pivots, place, send out, out-of-site sits and downs, and loose leash to prepare to go off leash. An emphasis will also be on polishing your personal handling skills.

Drop In Advanced Classes: Drop In Advanced Classes: Classes are every Tuesday at 7:45 pm. These classes are available to all dogs and pet parents upon completion of our basic and intermediate classes for the life of your dog.

Canine Good Citizen: This six week class prepares dogs for testing for the AKC Canine Good Citizen certificate. For additional information about the CGC test requirements, go to http://www.akc.org/events/cg/index.cfm

dog training

Tag-Jump-300x200Private Lessons: Convenient private sessions with the Trainer are available for basic training, problem solving, and mastering advanced competition related skills. Sessions may be scheduled at the owner’s residence if preferred.

In-kennel Training: The Trainer will train your dog while your dog is boarded for a minimum of one week.

Electronic Collar Training: One or two lessons are usually needed to learn how to safely use an electronic collar. All training is done at a threshold level. Important skills which are learned include off leash heeling and come when called off leash. Problem solving is provided to eliminate any maladaptive destructive behaviors, i.e., chasing cars and cats, digging, getting in the trash, counter surfing, fence jumping, and aggression issues.

Therapy/Service Dog Classes: Please see Niki’s not for profit Got Your Six: Support Dogs For Veterans for more information.


Pet Adoption Discount: New owners who adopt from a rescue group are entitled to a free evaluation. Owners are also given a 10% discount for the Basic Manners class within the first month of adoption.

Veterinarian Staff Discount: We offer a complimentary six week basis manners course to all veterinarians. Veterinarian staff receive a 20% discount for the basic manners class, or attend the start lecture for free!

Rescue Group/Foster Discount: Discounts apply for volunteers/staff who help the homeless pets. Please call for details.

Veteran Discount: In appreciation of your service to our country, we would like to honor both active duty personnel and veterans with a 10% discount for basic manners class.



Over fifteen years of experience teaching pet owners to speak the secret language of dog.

Dog Trainer Niki Lanahan

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We are proud to have on site, dog training and help with any behavior problem between dogs and their humans. Certified Professional Dog Trainer/Behaviorist Nicole Lanahan graduated from the Tom Rose School of Dog Training in 2001. For six months, Niki resided at the dog trainer’s school. She studied and trained hundreds of dogs in order to complete the necessary rigorous requirements for certification as a qualified dog trainer and behaviorist. During the six months of school, she learned: basic to advanced obedience, competition obedience, competition agility, tracking, search and rescue, pet therapy, service dogs, schutzhund, military and police dogs, electronic collar training, and of course pet behavior problem solving. Niki excelled in helping pets overcome behavior issues.

After graduation, Niki opened and operated a groom shop and training center for five years, competed in obedience and agility (elite level) with her rescued black lab Shawnee and currently her red aussie, Tag. She has also accomplished 13 years of private lessons, in home lessons, supervised large doggie day care sessions, obedience classes with the public and board ‘n train training. Additionally, Niki is certified with the AKC to teach and test for Canine Good Citizen.

In 2014, a local church appointed Niki to foster and train two therapy/service dogs for the community. In October of 2015, she started Got Your Six Support Dogs (not for profit) for Veterans and First Responders. (Click the logo to go to the site) When Niki is not training and helping people and their pets, she enjoys writing books (10 published), singing in a band and spending time with her family and dogs.


Catch Niki’s energy and passion for dogs! You can find Niki on Facebook otherwise just give us a call at the Critter Camp for more information and ask for Cindy!





Karen the Dog TrainerA little about Karen….
I have been training dogs since 1983. It began when my sister had a very unruly Labrador Retriever, “Daisy”. Dr. Helms, from Hawthorne Animal Hospital, suggested she take her dog to the Edwardsville Kennel Club’s obedience classes. I decided to tag along with my Golden Retriever, Buffie.We had a ball going to classes and working with our dogs. It was so exciting watching them learn. We went on to compete and did very well in competition.

Our interest grew and we began attending seminars, training camps, etc. Over the years, I have attended numerous seminars, Bob Self, Sharon Long, Andrea Vaughn, Debbie Quiggly, Dianne Bauman, Connie Cleveland, Terry Arnold, Lynn Weinberg, Sandy Ladwig, Bridget Carlson, Gary & Kathy Platt & Julie Hill – All top obedience competitors with multiple Champion Obedience dogs. Most can be found on Facebook or have their own Website.

In addition to seminars, we attended several Obedience training camps with Terry Arnold who was the Top Obedience trainer in the country for many years running. I also attended a private training camp hosted by Lynn Weinberg at her facility in Memphis, TN.

For several years I took private lessons from Judy Lee – who was at that time the top trainer in the IL & MO area & number 10 in the country She was a wonderful trainer, mentor & good friend.

To sum up my education in dog training, I have had the good fortune to learn from many dedicated & talented people which all had one thing in common. The belief that dogs learn through positive reinforcement which includes a lot of patience, a lot of love and many, many treats!! We have learned to communicate with another species !!!!!

In addition to attending seminars & training camps I also developed an interest in organizing seminars & did several for Mound City Obedience Training Club ( St Louis, MO) & Belle City Kennel Club (Belleville, IL).

I also organized the Not Ready For Prime Time obedience match for several years running. This was a fund raiser for the North County Obedience Training Club (St Louis). This included renting an appropriate location, arranging for appropriate flooring, ring gates & necessary equipment such as broad jumps, high jumps, etc. and hiring judges. This match drew people from several states – Tennessee, Kansas, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri, Wisconsin — & grew to an eight ring show with well over 200 entries. Frankly I did most of this from my kitchen table!

I am a retired obedience judge for the Australian Shepherd Club of America and the Mixed Breed Dog Club of America.

I have held classes for the Edwardsville Kennel Club, The Madison County Humane Society, Mound City Obedience Club, Belle City Kennel Club & lastly had training Classes at my own facility known as “ Red Barn Dog Training”.

All of my (Karen’s) classes, from puppy to advanced, build on a solid, basic foundation. Methods that work if a person wants to take their dog into competition or just want a well-mannered companion.

In the last few years I have developed an interest in Agility. I had the good fortune to have a very talented dog – my Tony – which I trained in agility. Unfortunately, I was not able to show him due to my
arthritis problems but he was shown by a good friend and went on to earn his Masters titles in Standard & Jumpers before he was forced to retire due to seizures & arthritis.

All in all, I love working with people & their dogs. The bond that is created between a person & their dog while training, I believe will lessen the likelihood that the dog will ever be surrendered or abandoned.

Karen Scopel





Patrick Ferland Dog Training

 Patrick Ferland: Dog Training, LLC

“Best Friends for Life”

Patrick’s company was founded in 2007 after receiving his dog training certification and graduating from the Animal Behavior College.  Patrick’s goal is to help dog owners achieve the best relationship possible through exercise, consistency, love and discipline.  He has assisted owners with numerous problem behaviors and enjoys coaching families through what may seem like stressful times with their dog.  Patrick teaches the Saturday morning classes at the Critter Camp, is a Canine Good Citizen evaluator, and also is available for private in home training.

Feel free to contact him:

Phone: 618-670-9000
Email: patrickferland@4pawztrainingk9s.com
Website: www.4pawztrainingk9s.com
Facebook: Patrick Ferland Dog Training