PET POOCHES aren’t a problem for this canine-crazy trainer from Leeds.
Richard Edge has trained 2,000 pups in the past 15 years – from bomb disposal dogs in India to abandoned pooches in Taiwan.
Now the 42-year-old from Whitkirk has proved he’s top dog after receiving a prestigious qualification that only 30 people in the world have achieved.
Richard, who only packed in his job as a printer two years ago, will be presented with his certificate for the Kennel Club Accreditation Scheme for Instructors in Dog Training and Canine Behaviour at the Crufts tournament next month.
He said: “Getting the qualification was an intense process but it acknowledges the hard work that I have put in over the years.”
The two-day assessment took into account his training in obedience and agility.
Richard is also doing a degree in canine behaviour and training through the University of Hull, meaning he will soon be a bona fide pooch professor.
Having worked as a printer since the age of 16, Richard was inspired to go into dog training after taking on chocolate Labrador pup Bentley.
Richard now lives in east Leeds with his wife Gail and their black Labradors Guinness, 10, Drake, four, and Bentley, who is now 16.
He added: “It’s a passion of mine.
“My dogs are my children, and Bentley is the reason everything changed for me.”
Speaking about his biggest achievements, he added: “I’m a lad from Whitkirk and going to Taiwan to train people to help abandoned dogs was one of those occasions you never forget.”
Richard’s top tips
The most common problem dog owners have is with lead work, according to top trainer Richard Edge.
He said: “If you are having issues when you are passing other dogs, it is the lead work that is causing it.
“Buy an appropriate lead, a nice comfortable lead that you can have loose when they are in the right place – at your side.
“Get a lead where the dog is at the side of you, not an extendable lead where the dog is in front.
“Lead work is an exercise, not a social event – that will come afterwards.”
For more information about Richard and his dog training, visit his website at www.suburbandogtrainer.co.uk.