Katie Oilschlager is the owner of Think Pawsitive Dog Training LLC, Wisconsin’s largest indoor canine training and conditioning facility. She is an ongoing student of Greg and Laura Derrett, Susan Salo, Anthony Clarke, Susan Garrett, Margaret Simek, and Bob Bailey. She serves as an evaluator for AKC-CGC and as an agility judge for UKI. Katie has developed dog therapy programs and is actively involved in youth programs with a few of her dogs.
Katie has had a great fondness for dogs since she was a young child. Her training career began with her involvement in the 4H canine training program where she and her dog, Rusty, excelled. This left Katie with an increased confidence and a hunger for greater challenges. Over the years she has sought out and studied under the tutelage of some of the world’s finest instructors. She continues to seek advances in her training and applies her new knowledge and skill to her ever-evolving and expanding curriculum at Think Pawsitive.
Long before becoming the owner of Think Pawsitive, Katie graduated from the Wisconsin School of Professional Pet Grooming. Her natural talent was quickly evidenced by a growing client list. Thus, with her husband Todd, she opened and operated a successful grooming, dog daycare, and retail business for ten years. Her insatiable love of working with dogs led her to pursue expansion into canine training and agility competition. She has never looked back.
Katie is the proud owner of four Golden Retrievers, one Border Collie, one Australian Shepherd, one Parson Terrier, and one Border Collie/Papillion mix. Baloo(15-year-old Golden) has retired from dock diving, agility, and obedience. He has appeared on dog food labels and starred on the“Great Train Kids” television show. Merit (8-year-old Border Collie), Rippa (5-year-old Australian Shepherd) and Meeko (4-year-old Golden) compete in agility at the local and national level. Kanga (5-year-old Golden) and Buzz (2-year-old Golden) compete in dock diving and canine disc dog. Britta (4-year-old Parson Terrier) competes in canine nose work. Presley (7-month old Border Collie mix) is just starting out his foundation training.
Katie regularly competes in AKC, CPE, UKI, and USDAA agility with her own dogs and several of her students’ dogs. She has earned multiple Excellent/Masters titles, Championship titles, and Regional and National placements.
Using positive and motivational training methods, Katie has been extremely successful in teaching General Manners to puppies and adult dog as well as Agility Foundations, Canine Nose Work, Competition Agility, Obedience, and a variety of special skills classes including Core Strength and Rear-End Awareness, 2×2 Weaves, Contacts Criteria, Recalls, Tricks, and many more. She employs Operant and Classical conditioning techniques to achieve amazing results! Students are taught to use positive reinforcement (rewarding their dog for offering the desired behavior) in lieu of physical or verbal corrections which produce dogs that are happy, confident, and highly motivated to work hard for their handlers.
Think Pawsitive has earned a strong and well-known reputation as a premier dog training facility that attracts hundreds of happy visitors each week. Katie is very proud of Think Pawsitive, as it is an exceptional place that allows the development of safe, healthy, and rewarding relationships between dogs and their owners and providing uniquely enriching activities for every dog and owner who visits us.”
Katie is also extremely proud of the variety of outreach programs and charitable contributions that Think Pawsitive supports throughout the year. Canine Connections, a school-year youth program, engages young people in learning about dog training, sports, and the human-canine bond. Think Pawsitive staff and students host numerous outreach and education booths at a variety of diverse dog and non-dog-related events in the greater Milwaukee area. These unique opportunities reach tens of thousands of visitors and support various non-profits and civic groups. It is extremely important to Katie to support our community and to give our time and talents to non-profit groups. Think Pawsitive donates to numerous civic and charitable causes throughout the year. We are very honored to give back.
To set up a private lesson with Katie please contact her at:
Sarah has been involved in dog training and agility since 2008. She enjoys continuing her education in the sport of agility through workshops and classes with Greg and Laura Derrett, Susan Salo and Anthony Clarke. She also learns from a variety of other top competitors and experts inside and outside of agility.
As a child, Sarah always had dogs in her house. She grew up with great passion and love for them and knew that her future would lead her to pursue a career that would foster this passion. Currently, Sarah has three dogs including a Shih-Tzu/Poodle, a Lab mix, and a Border Collie. All three of her dogs participate in different canine sports including swimming, agility and nose work. When Sarah and her dogs are not working on agility and nose work skills, you can find them out hiking, working on tricks or just enjoying life together.
Sarah teaches Manners, Agility and Nose Work classes along with a variety of workshops and seminars.
Joan Zelinger teaches Agility Foundations, 2×2 Weave Poles, Foundation Jump Grids, Putting It All Together and Competition Handling classes and assists with presenting seminars and workshops. She also helps Katie with writing and editing Think Pawsitive’s curriculum. Joan applies her expertise as a retired high school teacher to her instruction at Think Pawsitive. Her ability to clearly explain and demonstrate theory and skills helps her students progress confidently through the curriculum. She balances patience and humor while challenging each of them to stretch their limits.
Joan strongly believes in the importance of continually advancing her own knowledge and mastery. She routinely attends camps and seminars with Greg and Laura Derrett, Anthony Clarke, and Susan Salo and many other agility experts. Joan has also had the good fortune of working with Susan Garrett, Stuart Mah, Ann Braue and Bud Houston. All have made significant contributions to her skill and understanding of the sport of agility.
Joan has been involved in agility competition and training since 1997. She currently owns two Australian Shepherds: Beacon (13 yrs. old) and Truman (11 yrs. old) and two 2 Golden Retrievers: Colter (4 yrs. old) and Quinn (1 yr. old). Beacon and Truman have excelled at the highest levels of agility competition and have placed in National competition. Colter is currently competing and Quinn is working through her agility skills classes. In her free time, she enjoys swimming, hiking and playing interactive games with her dogs. She loves to design and construct training equipment, toys and collars for her canine friends.
To set up a private lesson with Joan please contact her at:
Brenda’s love of animals goes back to her growing up on a dairy farm, remembering spending lots of time with the young animals, include the family dog and cats. She even remembers family members telling her to go to vet school, but she enjoyed working with the animals and watching them grow with confidence.
Brenda has always had a love for huskies and cats; however, living in apartments until she had a house, she was happy having 2 cats. In 2013, Brenda got her first Husky dog, Kiara. Kiara was a runt of the litter and was very shy and not confident in herself as a puppy. Brenda was determined to build Kiara’s confidence. After trying a couple of training facilities, Kiara was missing the confidence and that is when Kiara’s vet had recommended Think Pawsitive’s training program.
One Saturday morning, Brenda went to Think Pawsitive facility to talk to someone about their training program and discovered there was an agility trial event that weekend. It was very educational and inspiring to watch the owners and their dogs running through a course and the way their dogs were response to the owners. Brenda knew this was the facility for Kiara. This facility would let Kiara develop a relationship on her time to allow her to process the lesson and learn to grow confidence on her own.
Brenda was surprised at the progress her and Kiara had made throughout the years, began thinking about dog training as a way of life. Over the years, Brenda’s family has grown and now includes three dogs: Kiara, Banditt, and Smokee-Ash and a Frankie, calico cat, which rules over everybody in the house, of course.
The entire family’s favorite thing to do is hiking together out in nature. Brenda enjoys participating in the “Try It Demo’s” (Agility, Nosework, Manners) that Think Pawsitive does at any of their events. Her passion is helping others and their dogs develop strong and fulfilling relationships in the hopes they too can be as happy as Kiara and Brenda first made each other. Banditt and Smokee-Ash have strengthened Brenda’s spirit!
Olivia joined our team in May of 2020. She is an instructor for Puppy Enrichment Classes, K9 Splash Swims and our TAILS Academy day training program. One of her favorite things about working at Think Pawsitive is seeing the “light bulb” moment that happens in both the dogs as well as their handlers. Currently Olivia is finishing up her bachelor’s degree in Animal Behavior at Carroll University. Olivia loves learning about all species, in 2019 she studied abroad in Thailand studying veterinary science in both cats and dogs as well as elephants. Olivia has a passion for all animals as she grew up with dogs and exotic animals in her house. Currently at home she has a red and green wing Macaw, Great Pyrenees and a Corgi who she trains in agility here at our facility. Outside of work you can find her hiking the outdoors with her dogs.
Carly has been working with dogs since she was a child. Growing up volunteering for the Rock
County 4-H Dog Project and working at a dog boarding facility, she has a strong passion for animals and teaching them behaviors that keep them safe, happy, and enriched. Carly has two dogs (Moses and Jonah) and has experience competing in obedience, rally, agility, flyball, dock diving, disc, and canine freestyle.
Carly instructs classes and workshops for puppy, manners, agility, rally, canine
In addition to our permanent staff, Think Pawsitive also works with a group of talented visiting instructors who bring their unique skills to help educate and empower the people and dogs we work with.
CLICK TO MEET OUR VISITING INSTRCUTORS