Karin Pienaar (Landsberg)
Karin has been working in the field of animal behaviour and behaviour therapy in South Africa since 1997. She completed her Diploma in Animal Behaviour in the UK, through the Centre of Applied Pet Ethology (COAPE) and is a qualified Practitioner member of the CAPBT in the UK and South Africa, as well as a Practitioner Member of ABC SA.
She worked as a Behaviour Practitioner for 9 years in Cape Town, but then moved to Johannesburg in 2007 where she, along with her business partners, established the highly successful COAPE SA along with its sister business ThinkingPets. ThinkingPets was later sold to Leigh Shenker who now runs it successfully.
After 20 years of consulting, Karin’s main focus now is presenting the COAPE Diploma and tutoring students, as well as course development for COAPE. She is the Course Moderator for the Diplomas, and one of only two Practitioners licensed internationally to offer COAPE’s prestigious courses. In addition to frequently appearing on Talk Radio 702/567 Cape Talk and several television programs, she has also been a valued part of the “Animal Talk” radio team. She writes for Animal Talk, Cat’s Life and several overseas magazines and is also contracted to Eukanuba as their Behaviour Specialist, presenting seminars across South Africa. Karin is often in the media relating to Animal Behaviour matters.
She heads the Enrichment Partnership Program between COAPE and the Johannesburg Zoo, where she and her team volunteer their time to work with the Zoo to develop bespoke enrichment programs to promote behavioural and emotional health in captive animals, using COAPE’s EMRA approach. They also provide training for both staff and animals to make husbandry tasks and medical examinations/treatments as stress-free as possible. For more information about the Zoo project, visit the Jhb Zoo enrichment programme page.
Wendy joined COAPE SA and its sister business ThinkingPets in 2007, and together with Karin and Peter founded COAPE SA in 2010.
Wendy retired from the Corporate World and relocated to Langebaan in the Western Cape in May 2011. She heads up the Cape Town Diploma lecturing team, and tutors both the Diploma and C0 courses as well as Moderating the C0 courses. She writes articles for Animal Talk and Estate Life and is kept busy with the financial aspects and the day to day running of the business. When she has the chance, she consults with clients for all aspects of canine and feline behaviour problems.
Wendy has been involved in the training and showing of dogs for the past 20 years. However, she has only made a career out of animal behaviour since 2006. Wendy holds the OCN UK accredited Diploma through the Centre of Applied Pet Ethology as well as a Certificate in Companion Animal Behaviour. She is a Guild Certified TTouch Practitioner, a qualified canine obedience and clicker training instructor as well as being a Practitioner member of both the CAPBT and ABC SA.
Leigh’s studies and career path started in the field of human behaviour, working primarily with youth at risk. However, her love of four legged creatures led her to change direction towards all things related to animal behaviour. Leigh was volunteering in shelters and recognised a real need for behaviour practitioners, both for the animals in the shelters and for post-adoption support. She therefore embarked on obtaining her qualification as a companion animal behaviour practitioner through COAPE. Leigh now holds the OCN UK accredited Diploma through the Centre of Applied Pet Ethology.
She has completed her clicker training qualification and has a real interest in natural medicine for animals, and therefore grows and sources many unusual medicinal plants. Leigh spends the majority of her time involved in shelter work and working with clients. Her dedication to shelter work is reflected in several programmes and systems she has set up, and she is committed to changing the traditional model for animal shelters and improving basic conditions for all animals, as well as assisting families who choose to adopt a rescue. Leigh took over ownership of COAPE SA’s sister company, ThinkingPets, in December 2015 and lectures and tutors the COAPE EMRA Advanced Diploma in Animal Behaviour in South Africa.
Leigh marks and moderates all the COAPE courses.
Prof. Peter Neville
Prof. Peter Neville is a founding partner of COAPE and was Clinical Professor at the Department of Veterinary Medicine, Faculty of Agriculture, Miyazaki University, Japan from 2008 to 2010, and has been Adjunct Full Professor at the Department of Animal Sciences, The Ohio State University, USA since 2009. He established the behaviour referral clinic at the Department of Vet Medicine, Bristol, UK in 1990. Peter has been in practice for the treatment of behaviour problems in pets for over 25 years and is a speaker in high demand at veterinary, behaviour and training meetings all over the world.
Author of the best-selling books: “Do Cats Need Shrinks?” and “Do Dogs Need Shrinks?” Peter is the independent companion animal behaviour consultant to Nestle Purina PetCare in the UK and also leads ‘behind the scenes’ safaris observing the behaviour and studying the ecology of African Wild Dogs and big cats first hand with biologists and vets in the field, and photographic tuition safaris in South Africa with renowned professional wildlife photographer, Neil Aldridge.
COAPE’s Prof Peter Neville co-authors ‘Breed-dependent differences in the onset of fear-related avoidance behavior in puppies’ in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior 10 (2015) 286-294. A later onset of fear-related avoidance behaviour was observed in CKC Spaniels compared with GSD and Yorkshire Terrier puppies: emotional and behavioural development varies among dog breeds.
Judy grew up with a great passion for all creatures great and small, so after school she naturally progressed to completing a degree in Zoology and Entomology. After her studies she took a break from her books and due to her love for animals, worked as a veterinary nurse at the Cape of Good Hope SPCA for a year. She then went back to her studies to become a research entomologist working for the Agricultural Research Council for many years.
Her passion for working with animals prompted Judy to enrol for the 3-year TTouch Practitioner’s course in South Africa in 2007.
She qualified as a TTouch Practitioner in September 2009. Following that, Judy completed the COAPE C01 Dogwise Stage 1 course with distinction in 2010. She is a qualified ThinkingPets Puppy and Kitten School Instructor and completed her OCN UK COAPE Diploma in 2014. Judy is the student Liaison at COAPE and handles all student queries. She is the tutor for all the AB courses.
Cheryl has been a lifelong advocate for animal welfare. She has worked for numerous animal charities in the UK, raising funds and performing home checks. She was involved in raising awareness of the conditions and cruelty of animal shelters in Romania and other European countries, and helping to arrange transport for dogs from Romania to the UK.
Cheryl has a wide range of experience working in IT, sales and administration. She was working for a large Global computer consultancy for many years when, in 2002, she decided to take a long sabbatical to travel the world with her now husband. Their passion for travel inspired their decision to relocate to South Africa in 2013. They moved to Somerset West, where she continues to volunteer for various organisations.
Cheryl now runs the successful Helderberg and Stellenbosch Lost and Found Pets and is a regular volunteer for a local charity HART. Cheryl handles all the administrative and IT aspects at COAPE.
Tarryn has a deep passion for animal welfare and love for rural Africa. While living in Mozambique for 4 years she volunteered at the local animal shelter (MAPS) and worked with many abused and neglected animals that seemed to be unadoptable. Wanting to know more about the behaviour of the animals in her care she qualified as a ThinkingPets Puppy School Instructor in 2010 and completed her OCN UK COAPE Diploma in 2013.
While living in Malawi, Tarryn ran the Blantyre SPCA as well as being country manager for Mission Rabies there. She used her knowledge to implement an enrichment and “train-to-adopt” program where the dogs were properly socialized and given basic training to make them more adoptable. This increased the adoption rate by over 180%.
In 2017 Tarryn and her family moved back to Cape Town, where she now volunteers at local shelters in her spare time. Tarryn assists Cheryl with the administrative aspects at COAPE, including processing student assignments.