Meet The Team

Dianne Canafax


Dianne is a highly successful certified professional dog trainer with 25+ years of experience, which includes private and public classes, behavior modification consultations, service dog training, and therapy dog training. Dianne’s greatest passion is helping people to better understand their dogs in order to strengthen the relationship between dog and human. The focus in all her classes is on how dogs learn and the “why” behind their behaviors. Dianne uses positive, scientifically proven, non-forceful training methods to emphasize the relationship between dog and human.

Dianne has volunteered with local animal shelters for more than 15 years and has been involved in animal rescue for the past 12 years. She is the co-founder of Kitsap Animal Rescue & Education (KARE). Her professional certifications include Karen Pryor Academy Clicker Training Partner, Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers, and Certified Therapy Dog Evaluator for Pet Partners. She updates her credentials with frequent continuing education courses in animal behavior and training.

Cathy Hayes

Treasurer & Secretary / Foster & Adoption Coordinator / Lead Trainer

As the Secretary & Treasurer for KARE, Cathy Hayes has a Business Management Degree, as well as a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting. She and her husband own and run an oyster farming business on the Hood Canal. She also owns her own tax accounting business, as well as manages rental properties.

She has two rescue dogs, a boxer named Tucker and Gracie the miniature poodle. 

She is a Reiki Master and learned T-Touch so that she could help local shelter animals. For KARE, Cathy not only serves as the Foster / Adoption Coordinator, but also leads group classes, private training sessions, and behavior assessments. Cathy is an AKC Canine Good Citizen Evaluator and offers evaluations regularly. 

She is a Certified Training Partner of the Karen Pryor Academy and a graduate of the KARE Canine Behavior Internship Program. Cathy has always loved and wanted to work with animals, so volunteering for KARE since 2012 has been both wonderful and rewarding.

Vickie Josal

Board Member / Volunteer Coordinator / Lead Trainer

Vickie Josal is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers. She leads our Canine Good Citizen/Therapy Dog Preparation class. Vickie was also a long-time volunteer at the local shelter as a Lead Dog Walker, Enrichment Assistant, Transfer Greeter, and Animal Transporter. As a volunteer with KARE for several years, she assists with training classes, Dog Behavior Deep Dive, event booths, transition consults, and behavior modification.

Vickie is always on the lookout for educational opportunities on canine behavior and how she can make a difference in their lives. To date, Vickie has graduated from the KARE Canine Behavior Internship Program and completed weekend seminars by Sue Sternburg, Debbie Jacobs, L.E.G.S. by Kim Brophey, Clicker Training Chicken Camp with Terry Ryan and Kelly Bollen, in addition to many other webinars and classes. She adopted a shelter pup, Daphne, and went through extensive training to become a Pet Partners therapy team.

Positive reinforcement and reward-based training are her philosophy for both four- and two-legged students. Vickie lives with her husband, Todd, and Daphne, her shelter rescue, a lab/whippet/Australian Koolie mix and Sia her 4 year old rescue labradoodle.

When Vickie is not doing “dog stuff” she enjoys spending time with her kids and grandkids, traveling, and volunteering with the local charities.


Laura Horton

Training Coordinator / Lead Trainer

Laura is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers. She began volunteering at KARE as an assistant dog trainer and was soon promoted to Training Coordinator and Lead Trainer. She maintains current classes, implements new programs, and manages customer service and scheduling. As a trainer, Laura also teaches group classes, assists with Therapy/CGC, and helps lead the Reactive Rover program.

In 2019 Laura earned her M.A. in New Media from Aalto University, Finland. After she returned to the U.S. she decided to pursue one of her great passions in life – training dogs and helping people. Laura is currently studying reinforcement-based training with an emphasis on service dog training. Besides working for KARE she also volunteers as a Team Facilitator for Atlas Assistance Dogs. She eventually wishes to help train mobility assistance and/or psychiatric service dogs.

When she’s not working, she can be found drinking tea, reading, and exploring the great outdoors with her dog Samwise Gamgee.

Contact Laura if you have any questions about upcoming classes!


Carla Peterson

Lead Trainer / Marketing Coordinator / Admin

Carla has been volunteering for KARE since 2013 in a variety of areas, but you can usually find her working on KARE Training or behind the scenes with marketing and admin. Carla is accredited with the International Association of Behavior Consultants (IAABC) as an Accredited Dog Trainer (ADT) and a Shelter Behavior Affiliate (SBA). For KARE, she’s developed and taught the Rally FUN-damentals class, assists with Reactive Rover sessions, and helps with other class/workshop development.

Carla’s love for dog behavior began in the early 2000s after her misrepresented puppy, Amos, developed fearful aggression during handling and around certain high-value objects. The warning signs before a bite were almost entirely body language rather than audible. Carla began to seek out the least intrusive and minimally aversive training to help her and Amos. Ten years later, Carla started volunteering at the local shelter where her understanding of dog behavior began to grow, and in 2014, she graduated from KARE’s first Canine Behavior Internship Program. Sadly, her beloved Amos passed away in late 2015 due to lymphoma.

Carla just can’t seem to get enough of dog behavior. She’s attended multiple Clicker Expos by the Karen Pryor Academy, IAABC Conferences, Control Unleashed Conferences, and Aggression in Dogs Conferences. Her continuing education includes graduation from Dr. Susan Friedman’s Living and Learning with Animals (LLA) course and numerous workshops with Terry Ryan, Sue Sternberg, Debbie Jacobs, John Rogerson, Kelly Bollen, Suzzane Clothier, Behavior Vets, and Fenzi Dog Sports Academy (FDSA).

When Carla isn’t volunteering with KARE, she’s hanging with her partner Chris, and their two KARE forever fosters, Mamma Mia and Maisy Moose. Carla also loves art journaling, music, and reading. She funds all of this with a full-time job as an Engineer/Scientist! Did we say that Carla loves learning? She’s currently pursuing a PhD in Computer Science at the University of Washington with ties to animal behavior!