Professional dog trainer Sharon Burch stands in an airport terminal with a yellow labrador wearing a red service animal vest.

Sharon Burch

Owner, Professional Dog Trainer

Sharon’s love for animals and nature began when she was little girl. Her parents always had Labrador Retrievers in their family and they taught Sharon the value in all living creatures, showing her that you truly can adapt and communicate with animals. Sharon adopted her first dog when she was a teenager. He was a rescued 1-year-old Rottweiler German Shepard mix named Tyson. Her next dog, Bailey, a Doberman, changed Sharon’s life. Bailey was smart and she quickly showed Sharon that, without discipline and leadership, Sharon would be Bailey’s human rather than Bailey being Sharon’s dog! Working with Bailey helped Sharon decide to explore dog training as a career.

Sharon began her career in professional dog training while working as a kennel tech, watching dog training videos in her spare time. Within six months, she was offered an apprenticeship position for dog training. She exceeded all expectations and began to look for more learning opportunities in the dog training profession. After working at several dog training schools, she opened The 1 Dog Trainer Academy in 2008. She takes pride in each and every Cadet who attends her Academy and she will personally ensure that every dog and owner team will leave her Academy satisfied and confident in their new skills!

Our Senior Trainer, Cori Mitchell, poses with a brown dog named Ziva.

Cori Mitchell

Senior Dog Trainer

Cori has always loved animals and from a very, very young age wanted to become a veterinarian. That was the plan all the way through school, up until her first year of college when an allergic reaction to the felines made her realize that this dream would no longer come to fruition.

Still wanting to be involved with animals, she regularly “got lost” in the woods for the MDI Search and Rescue dogs during their training scenarios, and helped train her family’s Springer Spaniel to become a certified therapy dog. She never turned down the chance to go dog sledding with her friend and her Huskies during the winter!! Her family raised several litters of Brittany Spaniels and she always wanted to be involved, from the moment the puppies were whelped to each and every visit to the vet.

In 2011, she relocated to Florida. Her Border Collie was stolen three weeks later and for a while she wasn’t sure she would ever want to get another dog.  In 2012, the hopes of finding a Diabetic Detection Dog for her newly diagnosed four year old daughter brought her back into the dog world. Sharon became her dog trainer, her friend and, after completing an apprenticeship, Sharon became her boss. Part of her apprenticeship involved puppy raising and understanding the foundations of raising a puppy to become a working animal. During this process, Cori would have the pups live in her home and work on skills such as child socialization, foundation obedience, housebreaking, manners and much more.

Once she mastered the importance of puppy raising, she moved on to learning how to teach basic obedience, advanced obedience, service dog task skills and personal protection training. She works directly with clients with one on one classes and instructions on the handling of their dogs after they have attended one of the many courses taught. She has earned her AKC Evaluator’s title and continues her dog training education by attending seminars and webinars offered by various professionals in the dog training field. She has made a strong member of our pack and we look forward to many more years with Cori as our Senior Trainer.