Skills 4 Dogs


Behaviourist, Trainer and Educator, at Skills 4 Dogs I offer Dog Training services and Dog Behaviour Change Programs with a very simple philosophy. I believe that training the animals of Mackay should be effective, fun, innovative, and growl-free. Dogs and humans involved in the process experience the benefits of force free, modern, evidence based methods.

Put your best paw forward and let’s get started today.


All my services put your animals’ needs front and center in a safe and caring environment. I can work in a variety of ways depending on the needs of you and your pet. Take a peek below at the descriptions of the services I provide, then go to page for more detail.

Puppies – best beginnings | Day school program | One on One | Puppy classes


About Us

Sandy Patterson Dip CBST

I set up Skills 4 Dogs in 2012 to offer the people and pets of Mackay a new fresh method of training. Skills 4 Dogs is a fully certified insured and registered business. I am committed to ongoing education. I regularly attend professional development workshops and seminars to keep fully up to date with positive reward, force free, scientifically sound dog training and behavioural training methods. I thoroughly enjoy helping people and dogs live a great life together and great outcomes are something I work very hard to achieve.

Professional memberships 

Pet Professional Guild Australia

Agility Dogs Association Australia

Dogs Queensland

Association Pet Dog Trainers Australia

My Story

Passionate. Patient. Persistent. Pet-lover. These are just a few of the characteristics that describe me. I know each animal is different, and I’ll work with yours to give them the specific guidance they need. Whether you’re thinking about getting an animal, have a new pet, already own a pet with behavioral problems, or have a well mannered pet that you would like to introduce to dogs sports,

I am here to help.

Peace of mind that I can help with your dogs problem behaviours

Highly qualified and experienced in Dog Behaviour Science and applying the most up-to-date dog training techniques

Qualified | Experienced | Up to date with Professional Development


  • Diploma Canine Behavioral Science and Technology

(Companion Animal Science Institute, James O’Heare)

  • Certified Instructor and Assessor for Pet Dog Ambassador Program         PPGA​
  • Diploma of Business

(includes modules. leading teams, training and assessment)

Professional Development

APDT conferences: Sydney 2011. Melbourne 2013. Gold Coast 2015

Chicken Clicker Training Workshop – Poultry in Motion with Terry Ryan. Sydney 2017 

Numerous online courses with Fenzy Dog Academy. 2018 2019

Numerous webinars to improve training techniques and latest in science regarding changing problematic behaviours in dogs. 2018 2019

Train without using fear or force | Training is enjoyable for dogs and humans

What do our clients think?

I contacted Sandy at skills for dogs after I had got my fear aggressive Rottweiler, Bella, to the point where she was losing the plot on seeing other dogs. I had been using harsh training methods and had made a scary situation even worse for her.

Sandy was very informative and explained why her force free methods work. Through using classical conditioning Bella is a lot calmer around other dogs, meaning she can enjoy her outings more and so can I!
Thanks Sandy.

Rachel Whitwham

Sandy is a very pragmatic, realistic & honest person who is as good a judge of humans as she is of our canine friends.
As a first time dog owner at the ripe old age of 48, I needed advice & help. Sandy to the rescue! This woman is like an interface between the furry ones and the humans – like a dog language translator. She taught me how to read my very anxious scaredy dog, help him to feel safe and to help me to understand his signs and signals. Don’t tell others, but I think Sandy might actually not be a dog trainer at all – she might be a really good human trainer in disguise.
Highly recommend Sandy. Experienced, patient and intuitive.

Laura Terry

Sandy is amazing! She helped us through some rough patches with our aussie bulldogs and her support continued well and truly after the lessons were over. Thankyou!

Becky Knights

Sandy is professional and amazing. Highly recommended, she listened to all my concerns and discussed realistic outcomes over a period of time. My rescue dog lulu was very nervous and Sandy helped me and lulu communicate better and have some good techniques for the long run. I would highly recommend Sandy to anyone who would like their puppy or adult dog to be an active part of their family.

Natalie Aitken

Sandy has turned our crazy dog into a calm boy who is fun to be with and not a hassle to take places. He also has a heap of party tricks now. Sandy’s classes are fun and laidback so that you don’t feel like you’re at school again. Classes are also very affordable.

Antoni Sabatino

I would recommend Sandy as we seen marked improvement in our rescue dog’s behaviour after seeking Sandy’s help. I am a veterinary nurse and still needed extra guidance helping our new family member. Everyone who seen her before and now cannot believe she’s the same dog!

Emily Bozier

Sandy is very patient with both dog and their humans alike. We have learnt our lessons together while having lots of fun and eating many treats. Jewel is now well on her way to being a very socialised puppy, much easier to take into public places. We would highly recommend Sandy to anyone needing some guidance with their fur baby.

Rae Ryan

Skills 4 dogs i cannot thank you enough for all your amazing advice and help. I rescued Libby and she was a handful to say the least. And now i have a beautiful well behaved 1 year old that listens and knows new tricks.
Skills 4 dogs also taught me how to talk to Libby and be more paitent and understanding.
Thank you again. Highly recommend skills for dogs. Truly the best dog trainer.

Amber Wensley


Wide variety of classes and services.
Numbers in class are limited, so every team gets some individual attention.


Price List

Good Dog Manners Class - $180 – 6 weekly sessions

Puppy Class + Operation Socialisation - $150 - 5 weekly sessions

Short Courses Topics Class - $80 4 weekly sessions

Sports/ Fitness Classes – when scheduled TBA

Private Coaching or Tuition at your home or park.

Single Session - $150

Discounted Packages Available

in home discounted packages

Silver : 3 for $340 / Gold : 6 for $620 / Platinum : 10 for $990

Quota Park Packages -  4 sessions $280 / 6 sessions $400

Pricing / Book Online