Meet the team

My name is Rachel and I am the proprietor of Abbey Dog Training, which I established in 2008. I carry out classes, one:ones and home visits, for all of your training requirements.   I am a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT, UK) membership number 01148 and a licensed trainer for the Clever Dog Company.

I am also a trainer and assessor for Dog AID and a trainer for Darwin Dogs (both assistance dog charities).

Donna McDonnell

My name is Donna I am a dog behaviourist, with over 15 years experience. I specialise in aggression and separation anxiety, but I also carry out home visits and one:ones, where I help with a wide range of individual training requirements.

I am a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers UK (APDT UK) membership number 01200.

My name is Yvonne and I carry out classes and one:one training for a range of different training needs. I am passionate about training younger dogs and ensuring that they and their owners get off to the right start.

I have a degree in Animal Science and I am also a student member of PACT (Professional Association of Canine Trainers).

My name is Leanne and I am a Primary School teacher with a BAHons in education. My passion is to teach children about responsible dog ownership, force free training methods and how to work safely with dogs.

My dog Quattro comes to school with me every day and is in training to be an attending school dog with the help of the charity DHK (Dogs Helping Kids). This means that when qualified he will be a nurture, therapy and reading dog.

Tracey Wysocka

My name is Tracey I carry out puppy classes and one:ones and I have a passion for helping clients to harness their gundog breeds’ natural instincts.

I have an Advanced Diploma in Canine Psychology and I am an associate member of the Animal Care College.

My name is Dani and I assist in classes. I have have a passion for assistance dog training and my own dog Willow is a qualified assistant dog, who I trained with the help of Abbey Dog Training.


Association of Pet Dog Trainers, UK

Rachel and Donna are members of the APDT, UK (Association of Pet Dog Trainers) whose code of practice states that we will only use reward based ‘kind, fair and effective’ training methods. We will not use any aversive training techniques. Some common aversives include choke chains, shock collars, prong collars, rattle cans and sprays. All of these training methods are designed to inflict pain or discomfort on your dog, and it has been scientifically proven that reward based training is far more effective for dogs, and indeed for humans, than punishment training.

For more information on the APDT, UK, please have a look at their website:


Dog A.I.D.

Rachel is a trainer for Dog A.I.D. (Dog Assistance in Disability – Registered Charity No 1098619).

Dog A.I.D. is a charitable organisation which helps people with physical disabilities train their own pet dogs to be good companions, and help around the house with everyday tasks which able bodied people might take for granted – such as getting dressed, switching on lights and emptying the washing machine.  Dogs who complete all three levels of training become certified ‘assistance dogs’ and can provide help in shops and other ‘no dog’ areas.

Dogs can be trained to do just about anything you like, so long as they are physically capable of doing it and the task does not require opposable thumbs!

For more information on Dog A.I.D. please have a look at their website:

Darwin Dogs CIC

Darwin Dogs CIC is a Community Interest Company, a non-profit organisation, based in Nottingham.

They help people with mental health problems, or who are on the autistic scale, to regain their independence by training their pet dog specifically for their needs, thus giving them increased confidence, comfort and companionship.

Many mental health problems cause the person experiencing them to feel socially isolated, unwilling or unable to leave their home. A trained support dog can transform the lives of their owners by accompanying them when they go out, checking round the house on return to make the owner feel safe and even performing tasks around the house.

Professional Association of Dog Trainers (PACT)

The Professional Association of Canine Trainers (PACT) was founded by a group of highly qualified and experienced trainers and behaviourists, to provide an exceptional standard of theoretical and practical training for people wishing to become dog trainers.  PACT trainers working with the general public are highly knowledgeable, skilled and only use science-backed ethical and positive methods, i.e. no intimidation, coercion, force, nor any form of fear or pain-inducing methods.

Dogs Helping Kids (DHK)

Dogs Helping Kids is the UK’s unique charity dedicated to using highly trained dogs to help teach children non-violence, empathy, respect, kindness, love, responsibility, friendship and trust.

They are the only organisation in the country training and assessing dogs purely to work in the school and college environments as both educational and therapeutic aids. The impact School Dogs have on children and teenagers in the educational environment is amazing and changes lives forever. It is their vision to have a DHK School Dog working in every school and college across the country.