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Hours of Operation
By Appointment Only


Our Staff


Marlene and James (Jae) Stachowiak, Instructor/Founders

Endorsed by the prestigious National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors (NADOI) and Club Canino de Panama, Marlene started teaching in 1962. She has provided hands-on training for more than 10,000 dogs and handlers. Her professional experience, extensive breed knowledge, understanding of canine psychology, and development of training methods are a documented success. She has titled dogs in lure coursing, conformation, and obedience, as well as participates in agility and tracking.

Marlene Prepares to Take Samson and Sage Kayaking

Marlene is frequently a guest on radio and television, widely published, and has guest lectured at the University of Georgia, College of Veterinary Medicine. She is a certified tester and observer for the Alliance of Therapy Dogs (ATD), board of directors member, AKC Canine Good Citizen (CGC) evaluator (#398), and AKC Obedience Trial Judge, Emeritus. Her degree in education was completed at Southeast Missouri State University.

Jae, retired from the military, earned degrees in education, business, and electronics. He is a member of Mensa™ and ITD.


Lois Fair and Dogs

Lois Fair, Instructor

Lois moved to Aiken from Philadelphia in 1995. She previously owned Shetland Sheepdogs and now has Australian Shepherds and cats. Active since 1979 in obedience and breed clubs, Lois has taught obedience and agility at the highest level. Her training preparation and experience includes five years of study with a nationally known competition instructor. Her dogs hold titles in conformation (UKC), obedience (AKC, UKC, ASCA), and herding. She is a former member of Mighty Dogs, a Canadian-based professional agility demonstration team, and participates in herding sport activities, therapy dog work, and purebred rescue.


Georgia Smelser, Instructor Assistant

Georgia was a middle school teacher in Columbia County from 1973 until her retirement. She began training dogs in 1993 when a Shiba Inu became part of her family. Since that time, Georgia has attended classes and numerous seminars on conformation, obedience, rally, and agility. She has titled Shibas in AKC conformation and in AKC, UKC, and ASCA obedience at advanced levels. Her dog, Kodi, is the only Shiba in the US to have both a championship and utility dog title. Georgia and her dog also enjoy participating in the therapy dog program.

Georgia Smelser

Terry Gray

Terry Gray, Instructor

A graduate of the University of Georgia, Terry has been training dogs since 1980. She has put obedience titles on the following breeds: Great Dane, Labrador Retriever, Afghan Hound, Cocker Spaniel, and German Shepherd. Terry is also enthusiastic about photography, riding, and training her horses.


Nanette Johnson, Instructor

Nanette began training dogs in 1987. She has been a member of many dog clubs, served as training director, and titled Shetland Sheepdogs. A graduate of Southeast Missouri State University, Nanette is a photographer and the owner of Paw Prints Photography. Several remarkable felines live with her, as well.

Nanette Johnson

Nancy Kille

Nancy Kille, Boarding School

Nancy purchased her first German Shepherd in 1968 and now enjoys raising and training her German Shepherds. She has participated in AKC obedience, tracking, and conformation shows, herding instinct certifications, and the therapy dog program. Additionally, she titled dogs in the sport of Schutzhund (tracking, obedience, and protection). Nancy is an evaluator for the AKC Canine Good Citizen Program, an officer in two local dog clubs, and member of several national dog clubs.