Meet the Office & Veterinary Staff at By the Bay Dog Training

John Van Olden – President/CEO

John’s dog training career began over twenty years ago when he signed up to work in the military’s K-9 police department. He was responsible for training and taking care of his canine partner, and even after his service was complete, the passion he gained for helping dogs be all they can be remained. He went on to found the training company K-9 Advantage and preside over PAWSitive Solutions. He was also a founding member of the International Association of Canine Professionals.

A few years ago, John got the idea for Canine Trade Group, a company dedicated to bringing dog owners and dog trainers together. He would handpick the best possible trainers across the country, and frustrated owners could get in touch with a certified, experienced, reward-based and local trainer with the click of a button. By The Bay Training is a proud part of this revolutionary network.

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Cristin Ellis – Operations Manager

Cristin has over ten years of experience in the dog training field before becoming a part of the Canine Trade Group team. Cristin’s expertise was in agility competition training, but she had to learn behavioral training after her own dog, Sike!, began exhibiting signs of aggression.

She used Canine Trade Group techniques and found the behavioral balance she was looking for. Now, Sike! is the wonderful, happy member of the family Cristin always knew he could be, and she has all the tools to help potential clients realize how effective CTG’s training techniques can be.

Cristin lives with three dogs,  Sike! a 12 yr old Border Collie, Phineas a 6 yr old Border Collie, and Elsa a 5 yr old Border Collie.

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Nicole Zulkowski- Veterinary Relationship Manager

Ever since she was a child, Nicole knew that she wanted dogs to be involved in her life and her career. She attended Ursinus College and graduated with a BS in Biology, aiming to work in the animal field. All throughout high school and college, Nicole worked various jobs involving animals. Later after graduating, she worked as a veterinary technician and as a handler at a dog daycare. It was here that her interest in dog behavior came to full fruition, and began seeking opportunities in the dog training industry.

Nicole found Canine Trade Group and joined their office staff, talking to owners about their dog problems and guiding them to the right training program that would address all their needs and training goals. She has studied the dog training course that Canine Trade Group’s trainers take, which has built her understanding and experience in complex canine behaviors.

She lives happily with her two dogs: her Pitbull mix named Willow and a Boston Terrier/Pug mix named Brooklyn.

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Dr. Karen Usselman V.M.D. – On Staff Veterinary Consultant

Dr. Usselman is originally from western New York, attended Cornell University and then the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine in Philadelphia.  She graduated in 1996 and joined Brenford Animal Hospital in May 1996.  She is currently a partner with the practice. 

Dr. Usselman enjoys working with dogs and cats.  She is particularly interested in internal medicine, ultrasonography, behavior and dentistry.  She serves as the treasurer of the Delaware Veterinary Medical Association and has taught in the Delaware Technical College Vet Tech program.  Dr. Usselman is married to Dr. Jeff Booth and has two children, three dogs and a cat to keep her busy at home.


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