Instructor Spotlight

Instructor Spotlight

Christina O’Brien graduated from University of NH with a Bachelor's in General Studies (concentration in All Things Outdoors).  Her background is in environmental education - teaching kindergartners through senior citizens - and wildlife rehabilitation. She  lived and worked all over the US, moved to Idaho in 1990 with her husband Mike to manage what was then The Nature Conservancy's Thousand Springs Preserve (now part of Thousand Springs State Park), and to Boise in 2000 to help with Mike's aging parents. That entailed a career change to work at HP for 13 years. She's now retired and fills her hours with volunteering, hiking, gardening and learning. 

Chris teaches the “Mental Fun & Games For Your Dog”, "Scent Games" and “How To Help Your Barking/Lunging Dog” classes. Why, you might ask? Two border collies, who need both mental and physical exercise, and one of whom is a difficult dog. Chris is neither a dog trainer nor an animal behaviorist, but long experience has led her to many great local and online resources that help in both situations. 

Chris has found it impossible to tire out border collies with physical exercise; the more she works them, the fitter they become, and the harder it is to wear them out. So she added mental and olfactory exercise, and finds that it not only tires them out, it strengthens her bond with them, keeps their brain cells firing, builds confidence, and is just plain fun.

Her dearly loved late border collie Habi led her on an in-depth journey through behavioral modification and management techniques as Habi grew from a barking/lunging nightmare to a go-almost-anywhere/do-almost-anything companion. The “Barking/Lunging Dogs” class is Chris’ compilation of what she wishes she had known at the start of Habi’s saga. She is now applying all that to life with new difficult-dog Rowan. 

We love having Chris O’Brien volunteer her time, resources and experience with Community Ed!  This SPRING, she is teaching MENTAL FUN AND GAMES FOR YOUR DOG and HOW TO HELP YOUR BARKING/LUNGING DOG. Hurry! Her classes are always popular!