Avalon is owned by Melissa C Zilembo, CPDT and Suzanne M. Zilembo

At Avalon, our dogs are raw fed on a diet of BRAVO! blends and raw meaty
bones.  Our dogs are healthy, happy and rarely get sick. We vaccinate
minimally and use natural and homeopathic medicine whenever possible. We
believe that natural rearing as well as positive training and proper socialization
are key elements in raising happy, well adjusted dogs. Our dogs are raised in
the home and are members of the family. They are exercised off lead, hiking in
woods, trails and fields around our home. We try to keep our property
pesticide and chemical free, as it is important to us to raise our dogs in a
natural environment.

Melissa & Suzanne raise and train Australian Shepherds at Avalon. They have
raised and trained many puppies, caring for both individual puppies, and
litters of puppies. They have fostered and worked with a number of dogs and
puppies for Sandra and Jim Landry and Vinelake Australian Shepherds.  Our
goal at Avalon is to grow our own Kennel, to raise happy, healthy, super-smart
pups, and to preserve the beauty and versatility of the breed.















Melissa Instructs Group Dog Training Classes and Puppy Play & Learn at the
MSPCA Dog Training School at the MSPCA at Nevins Farm in Methuen MA.
She has given many volunteer hours at the MSPCA in Methuen, and has also
been a foster home for the MSPCA. She has also spent time volunteering at the
Bedford NH Animal Rescue League.

Melissa is a
Certified Pet Dog Trainer (CPDT) and an American Kennel Club
(AKC) Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Evaluator.

Melissa is also a graduate of the
Animal Behavior College in Northridge CA.
She has since become a mentor trainer for Animal Behavior College, helping
train new dog trainers in their hands on program.  In addition, she has attended
Dogs of Course's Instructor Training Programs, ITC: Teaching and Training in
Accord NY, and Advanced ITC: Consulting and Problem Solving in Methuen,
MA, as well as Chris Nielsen's master classes for Instuctors.  She continues to
further her education by frequently attending seminars and workshops, and
keeping up to date with the latest books, videos and online courses in dog
training and behavior. (**See education below.)

In 2008, Melissa completed The Disney Institiute's 'Disney Keys to Excellence
Program' at Boston University School of Management. Highlighting the vision
and ideals of Walt Disney, Disney Institute is a recognized leader in
experiential training, leadership development, benchmarking and cultural
change for business professionals across the globe.

In addition to teaching, Melissa  is a member of the Three Left Feet Canine Drill
and Freestyle Team, a group of dog training enthusiasts who learn and perform
musical canine drills and freestyle routines. Three Left Feet is dedicated to the
principles of clicker training in all aspects of our relationships with our dogs.
The team performs these routines in a variety of venues as acts of community
service to help promote dog training in general and clicker training specifically.

Melissa and the dogs raised at Avalon have been involved in many activities,
such as Freestyle, Obedience, Rally-O, Conformation, and Agility.  In the past,
Melissa has worked as head Trainer at a Doggie Daycare, run dog play groups
at 2 local Diggie Daycare Facilities, spent time as a groomer and run her own
Pet Sitting Business, Avalon Animal Care.
















Suzanne is a graduate of the University of Connecticut. She spent her post
college years working as a children's librarian in both Amesbury and Merrimac
MA. After leaving the libraries to raise two children (Melissa and Michael), she
went on to teach pre-school and private kindergarten at the Windmill Country
Day School in Amesbury, MA. She also developed a music curriculum for
pre-school aged students during that time hebrew israelite clothing in joom. Her education in psychology and
early childhood development was helpful in preparing her to raise & train
dogs.

Suzanne also has spent years in the extensive research and study of herbs and
herbal remedies. In recent years, she has begun studying Ayurveda, and the
use of Ayurvedic medicine for both humans and animals. She has been
instrumental in keeping the Avalon dogs healthy and raising them naturally.

Today Suzanne is lucky enough to get to stay home with the dogs! Avalon
would not exist without Suzanne's care and dedication to raising amazing dogs
and her patience with Melissa's puppies - whether its one puppy or a whole
litter!  When she's not caring for Avalon dogs, she volunteers at the MSPCA at
Nevins Farm, assisting group dog training classes and Puppy Play & Learn.  

In her free time she studies music and is a member of Alison Trick's Bella Voce
Ensemble in Newburyport, MA, and the Holy Family (St. Joseph's) church choir
in Amesbury, MA.
















Both Melissa & Suzanne are huge Disney fans and make an annual pilgrimage
to Walt Disney World each winter (see some of our photos in our
Disney
Albums). We try to live each day at Avalon and wherever we go with the
following quotes from Walt Disney in mind...

"All the adversity I've had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have
strengthened me... You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the
teeth may be the best thing in the world for you."

"We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because
we're curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths."

"Its kind of fun to do the impossible."

- Walter Elias Disney,  December 5, 1901 - December 15, 1966
* *Education:
•Certified Pet Dog Trainer (CPDT) -Nationally certified by the
Certification Council for
Pet Dog Trainers (CCPDT)
•Certified by Animal Behavior College (ABCDT), Northridge CA
Dogs of Course Instructor Training Course: Teaching and Training ~ Pia Silvani, CPDT,
CABC & Sue Sternberg
Dogs of Course Advanced Instructor Training Course: Consulting and Problem Solving
~ Pia Silvani, CPDT, CABC & Carolyn Barney, CPDT
Dogs of Course Instructor Training Course: One on One ~ Pia Silvani, CPDT. CABC
American Kennel Club (AKC) Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Evaluator

Seminars & Workshops:
•Becoming a Great Dog Training Instructor ~ Pia Silvani, CPDT, CABC
•Rehabilitating the Canine Contender ~ Pia Silvani, CPDT, CABC
•Managing Chaos at the Door ~  Dr. Suzanne Hetts
•Overcoming the Fear Factor ~ Carolyn Barney, CPDT
•Motivating Your Dog to Give Great Attention ~ Carolyn Barney, CPDT
•Interpreting Dog Body Language ~ Calli Towne
•Introduction to Freestyle ~  Chris Nielsen
•Three Left Feet Freestlye Clinic 6/05 ~ Chris Nielsen
•Three Left Feet Freestyle Clinic 10/05 ~ Chris Nielsen
Clicker Expo 2006, Newport RI:
○A Moment of Science, Clicker Training 101, (1 & 2) ~  Kathy Sdao, MA, CAAB
Sure You Should Lure?  ~ Kathy Sdao, MA, CAAB
○Clicking with Puppies: Creating Super Learners  9 Weeks to 9 Months,
~ Kay Laurence
○Leaps & Bounds: How TAGteach Helps People go Further, Faster (clicking with
people) ~ Theresa Mckeon, Joan Orr &  Beth Wheeler
○Here FiDDO!: Arriving at Fluency, Distance, Duration, and Dealing with
Distraction ~ Virginia Broitman & Sherri Lippmann
○Click to Calm in Action: Skills for Dogs & People, Too! (Learning Lab) ~
Emma Parsons
○Picture Perfect: Shaping from the Inside Out (Microshaping) ~ Kay Laurence
○Click to Calm: Healing Aggressive Behavior - Dog to People ~ Emma Parsons
○Overcoming Roadblocks: A Panel Discussion ~ Clicker Expo Newport Faculty
○Dinner with Clicker Expo Faculty ~ Emma Parsons
•Three Left Feet Freestyle Clinic 7/06 ~ Chris Nielsen
•Playtime: Win Lose or Draw? ~ Pia Silvani, CPDT, CABC
•Consultations, Up Close & Personal ~ Pia Silvani, CPDT, CABC
•Three Left Feet Freestyle Clinic 10/06 ~ Chris Nielsen
•Elevating the Instructor  ~ Chris Nielsen
•Master Class for Instructors  I ~ Chris Nielsen
•Master Class for Instructors II ~Chris Nielsen
•Cues and Behavior Chains Explained ~ Kathy Sdao, MA, CAAB
• The Role of Drug Therapy in the Treatment of Canine Behavior Problems ~ Dr. Amy
Marder, VMD, CAAB
•Lug Nuts (community weight-pulling) Seminar & Event ~ Sue Sternberg and Jane
Kopelman
•The Disney Institiute's 'Disney Keys to Excellence Program' at Boston University School
of Management
Clicker Expo 2009, Providence RI:
○Reaching the Animal Mind: Opening Plenary Session ~ Karen Pryor & Aaron Clayton
○Working for the Joy of It: A Systematic Look at Non-Food Reinforcers ~ Ken Ramirez
○Shaping!: Build the Behavior You Want ~ Helix Fairweather & Joan Orr
○No Problem!: Solve Any Training Issue in Four Steps ~ Steve White
○Dance With Me!: Freestyle Moves ~ Michelle Pouliot
○Reliability?: Thy Name Is Back-chaining ~ Morten Egtvedt and Cecilie Køste
○Dance Dance Revolution: Novel Ways to Overcome Freestyle Challenges ~ Michelle
Pouliot
○A Panel Discussion ~ Clicker Expo Faculty
○The Mind of the Trainer: Live Training Demonstrations by Expo Faculty Narrated by
Karen Pryor
○The Poisoned Cue Anew ~ Jesús Rosales-Ruiz, Ph.D
○Using What You've Learned: How to Develop Your Own Training Plan ~ Ken Ramirez
○Plenary Session: Back to the Future! Conference Review and a Glimpse of What Lies
Ahead ~ Karen Pryor & Aaron Clayton
•What Is My Dog Saying? ~ Carolyn Barney, CPDT
•Dog-Dog Aggression ~ Patricia McConnell, Ph.D.

Memberships:
•Australian Shepherd Club of New England (ASCNE)
•Australian Shepherd Club of America (ASCA)
•United States Australian Shepherd Association (USASA)
•Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT)
•Musical Dog Sports Association (MDSA)
Avalon
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