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About Us / Our Instructors

Our pet dog training classes are designed to accommodate your needs. Many of our courses are ongoing and you can join at any time. This means weekly attendance, although recommended, is not mandatory; if you miss a week or two, you can come back and pick it up exactly from where you stopped, without falling behind. Advancement to the next level is based on completion of a task sheet. If you have lots of time to train your dog, you can complete our courses more quickly and if you are busy, or have an unpredictable work schedule, you can take your time. We are here to provide you and your dog with quality instruction and a flexible, supportive and low pressure learning environment.

Jane Masterson, CPDT


Jane Masterson has been training and walking dogs for 7 years. She worked as an assistant in the beginning dog training class at the Hyde Park Neighborhood Club from 1999-2002. This was a traditional class using physical corrections, such as jerks on a choke chain. Jane did not like this part of the training, so in 2002 she began to work at Call of the Wild School for Dogs. She worked there until 2004, first in daycare, and later in training. At Call of the Wild she learned Chris Bach's "The Third Way" method, which she loves. She also draws on the work of Ian Dunbar, Turid Rugaas, Pamela Dennison, Sue Ailsby, Leslie Nelson and Suzanne Clothier in her classes and private lessons.

Jane has always loved animals and studied animal behavior with Penny Ficken as an undergraduate. As a graduate student, she studied evolutionary biology under David Jablonski. After she finished her degree, she taught courses in evolution, genetics and behavior as an adjunct professor at the University of Chicago, Columbia College and Northwestern University. She decided to switch to full-time dog training after discussing with her NatSci 105 students in the fall of 2004 how lucky Irene Pepperberg was (see article about Pepperberg's work under links) because she got to work with animals all day long! Jane's homelife is currently enriched by one dog, two cats and three birds.

Jane is a Certified Pet Dog Trainer through the APDT.

Read interview with Canis Sapiens instructor, Jane Masterson on Puplife.com

Karen Banks (agility and flyball)
Karen Banks (agility and flyball instructor) has titled dogs in obedience, agility and flyball. She also teaches agility, flyball and greyhound classes at Best Friends' Windy City K9.

Charlene Finn (rally-o)
Charlene Finn (rally-o instructor) has titled two of her dogs in Rally-O.  Her mixed breed, Mickey, has earned his Level I (standard and fun) titles from CPE (Canine Performance Events ) and his Level III APDT title (Association of Pet Dog Trainers).  Sadie (another mixed breed) has earned her Level II APDT title.  Sadie and Charlene also take agility and canine freestyle.  Charlene also teaches in Mokena, Mt. Greenwood and Blue Island. Visit her website.