Lisa Ricketts

Hi, I’m Lisa. Welcome to Starbarks Dog Training

When we bring a new dog into our home we are embarking on a journey of discovery.. for new puppy owners this can be understanding the challenges of managing a fury little pup who is delectable when asleep but a hooligan when awake, an adolescent pooch who is still having “toddler tanties” like any teenager or a rescue dog who has arrived with baggage and needs support and understanding to feel safe and trust in a new environment.

We are all always learning, and I’m so excited to be able to share with you what I’ve learned about how to better understand our dogs so we can communicate and connect with them more effectively at any stage of your journey together.

I’ve been lucky since starting starbarks dog training over 7 years ago to be able to help both owners and their dogs through ethical behavioural support, and training, it is a joy for me to see both owners and dogs understanding each other better and kicking training goals.

So here is a little bit about my journey…

Contact Lisa
0403 791046

Like many of us, my love affair with our furry companions began in shared childhood adventures with my family dog, a mischievous Norfolk terrier called Toffee.

Since those early days, I have been privileged to share many more adventures with the dogs in my life. I should have known looking into the cheeky face of my first puppy, a Labrador X, aptly named Sassy, that life was about to become interesting.

My first rescue dog, a hansom kelpie X, introduced me to the impact that our often misguided attempts at training and lack of understanding can have on our dogs.

My time spent working with Kobe sparked a need in me to understand more about the relationship between dogs and humans, so I spent nine months volunteering with the RSPCA while living in Queensland. It was an experience that only confirmed my need to learn more.

My most recent rescue dog, is a beautiful bloodhound X, called Bella. This special girl, nicknamed “Bellows” by the local dog walkers, is ruled by her nose and can sniff out anything at 100 paces... She is a challenging girl who has taught me the importance of thinking outside the box when training our dogs, as one size definitely does not fit all.

The dog training world can be a challenging place and DR Google, can mislead and misinform sometimes with disastrous consequences..

It is important to me that I experience a range of training and education styles to support and improve my understanding of training concepts and how to apply them, so I can share this with my clients.

Since completing a Certificate IV in Dog Behaviour and Training with AVT and becoming a qualified IMDT instructor, I have been very lucky to spend time with some amazing trainers.

• Ken Ramirez, world renowned animal trainer to further my understanding of the fundamental science of training and how this impacts our ability to train effectively to support our dogs.

• Craig Olgilvie an international trainer who uses interactive play to support and educate, working with police and military dogs as well as pet dogs

• Attended various workshops from Aggression to Obedience class activities with IMDT trainer and founder Steve Mann, both here and in the UK

However sometimes we get a bit stuck in a training loop, and need to be open and look beyond training to understand the “why” that sits behind the behaviours we are seeing in our dogs. Pure training is not always the solution but part of the puzzle that explains dog behaviour.

Working with my business partner Neri, and as part of the dog whispering family I met the amazing Shaun and Kim Ellis, wolf behaviourists in the UK. Time at the wolf and dog development centre has helped me learn about myself and given me a deeper understanding of our dogs, their communication and their struggles in our urban world.

Spending time understanding and learning the Hemene ( meaning we are one, we are the same) Approach which promotes understanding the unique characters that influence both us and our dogs and is rooted in relationships.

This approach sees beyond the symptoms and unwanted behaviour, to repair and understand the interruptions to your dogs development and how this can influence behaviour. Enabling us to communicate effectively, connect and build relationships beyond training cues, with our dogs that last a lifetime. What dog or dog owner doesn’t want that?

I look forward to sharing what I have learned on my journey both personally with my own dogs and professionally with you and your pooch sometime in the future…


Behavioural Solutions:
Any dog can exhibit unwanted behaviours which may be distressing to you, your family or your friends. Behaviour patterns which respond well to the techniques employed by Dog Whisperers may include:
Challenging Behaviour
– Do you feel your dog is in charge of you?

– Are you worried about aggression towards you, other people, or other dogs?

– Does your dog like to destroy everything they can get their teeth into?

– Does your dog chase its tail, spin in circles, or catch imaginary flies?

– Does your dog bark excessively, whine, pull on their lead or jump up on people?
The comprehensive Behaviour Solutions program involves Lisa coming to your house and carefully gathering and analysing all information relevant to your case. Lisa will provide a training program to support you and your dog’s needs, implementing appropriate strategies to reduce the problem behaviour.
Follow-up support includes an optional follow-up visit and handouts applicable to your situation.
Behaviour Solutions initial consultation lasts for approximately 2 hours and the follow-up session is about 1 hour.

Initial Consultation (2 hours) $350 inc GST
Optional follow Up can be tailored to suit the support required by both owner and dog, dependant on outcomes from initial consultation and training progress, this can include options such as Walk and train, In home follow up, socialisation.
Follow up Consultation (1 hour) $80 inc GST

Click here for the comprehensive Behaviour Solutions program services and costs

Puppy Training
In house Puppy Consultation
In house puppy training includes providing both training and practical demonstrations to help you raise your puppy. Essential areas covered include Calming, trust training, emotional regulation, socialising, toilet training and helping your pup learn right from wrong, using a positive hands on approach. This includes puppy problems such as biting, mouthing, jumping and what to do when they have the zoomies just as you are getting the kids ready for school !!!
Cost: $230 inc GST for 1.5 hour consultation,
In addition an optional follow up is available which is reduced to $70 (inc GST) when booked at time of consultation
Standard follow up consultation fee $80 inc GST

Obedience Classes
These classes are suited to dogs who have completed puppy preschool or a dog which is around 6 months of age. The classes run for 6 consecutive weeks, focusing on expanding the basic commands and communication including loose lead walking, sit, look, drop, stay, wait, recall, heel, and introduce the training concepts of intermittent reward and shaping, through interactive activities that challenge both you and your pup but don’t forget that training should be fun!!
Click here for more information or contact or 0403791046 to enrol or for further information.

Cost: $170 inc GST for 6 weeks

In-home obedience sessions
Includes general obedience training such as sit, drop, stay, heel, loose lead walking and recall. We can also cover some minor behavioural problems such as pulling on the lead.
In home obedience:
Cost: Initial consultation $230 for approximately 1.5 hour consultation.
Additional follow-ups $80 when booked at time of consultation.
*In-home prices are based on travel time – if location is further than 20 kilometres, a further $2.50 per kilometre will be charged. 24 hours notice is needed for cancellations otherwise a cancellation fee will be incurred.

Walk & Train
Well, here’s your answer – have one of our qualified staff walk and train your dog while you’re at work!
Dogs need constant training throughout their lives – otherwise they will quickly learn to do things the easy way. Even if already trained, your dog can quickly slip back into old habits unless desired behaviour is reinforced.

With this program, not only will Lisa walk your dog, but will provide expert reinforcement training. Your dog will benefit from both mental stimulation and physical exercise.
They will teach (or reinforce as needed) the basic obedience commands of sit, drop, stay, heel and recall. As an added benefit, your dog will learn to walk nicely on a lead too! Talk to Lisa about any other special dog training requests you may have.
The walk can end with some off-lead free exercise (provided your dog is not a runner!)
This program is ideal for dogs who are at home for long periods of time during the week. You will quickly notice the difference – many dogs are much happier around the house when they have had their daily ‘Walk and Train’

Initial mini assessment - $150 for a 1.5 hours inc GST
- $77 per walk*, prices are discounted based on the number of walks per 7 day period running from Monday to Sunday.
The 7 day period can be negotiated for individuals working a roster or FIFO schedule to ensure appropriate discount is applied at time of booking.
EG: 2 in a week $128

*prices may change based on travel – if walk and train sessions are further than 20k, a further 2.50 per kilometre will be charged. 24 hrs notice is needed for cancellation otherwise a cancellation fee will be incurred.

Please note, GST will be added to these costs.

Training fabulous pups for starring roles in Iona college presentation of legally blonde at his Majesty Theatre