6547 Cooley Lake Rd Waterford, MI 48327 phone: (248) 363-6262 fax: (248) 363–5630 info@unionlakepets.com Open 7 days a week.

Training Is an Important Part
of Pet Ownership

Pet Training

We offer the following training programs:

  • Puppy Preschool
  • Basic Obedience
  • Advanced Obedience
  • Drop Off / Boarding Training
  • Therapy Dog
  • Agility
  • Trick Training
  • Stunt Dog Training
  • Canine Conditioning
  • Daycare Socialization
  • Private Appointments
  • AKC Puppy Star Testing
  • AKC Canine Good Citizen

Behavioral Training:

  • Quirky K9s Class for Reactive Dogs
  • Behavior Consults and Modification
  • Private In-Home Appointments
  • Private In-Facility Appointments
  • Drop-Off Behavior Modification
  • Drop-Off Socialization for Fearful Dogs

Training Classes

Often veterinary professionals are not sure to whom they should refer clients for animal training. It can be difficult to find a trainer who uses non‐punishment based training, appreciates and respects the human‐animal bond, and demonstrates good rapport and teaching ability with owners.

This dilemma has been resolved by the creation of the Karen Pryor Academy for Animal Training & Behavior. Through educational assessments and hands‐on workshops, Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partners have demonstrated a high level of expertise and understanding of scientifically based positive reinforcement training methods.

Certified Training Partners have also shown that they can create a positive and safe learning experience for both the animal and owner. Graduates of the Academy are subject to a policed credentialing process (i.e. their credentials can be revoked), and are expected to demonstrate the highest level of professionalism and ethics.

When referring to a KPA Certified Training Partner, veterinary professionals can be confident that their clients will be taught state‐of‐the–art humane training techniques, and will be treated with the utmost respect.

Pet Training

In order for your dog to be an enjoyable family companion, proper pet behavior is necessary. Experience has shown us that in order for your dog to be successfully taught, training has to be a fun, rewarding, and positive experience for everyone. Our objective is to motivate your dog to be eager and happy to please you, because he wants to, not because he has to.

Our training will achieve this goal through praise, positive reinforcement, guidance, and most of all by making our training FUN for you and your dog. We will teach you how to motivate and guide your dog to learn obedience for life.

We are committed to humane and gentle training methods that will quickly and easily get your dog to perform the desired behavior and respond to a variety of commands willingly. We also offer Behavior Modification for dogs that struggle with fear, anxiety or aggression.

See our current Schedule, and other Training Options.

Our Training Team

Melissa Fenstermaker, CPDT, KPA-CTP, CCC, CTDI, AKC Stunt Dog Judge
Head Trainer and Instructor

Melissa Fenstermaker, Head Trainer and InstructorMelissa has always had an interest in working with dogs. She started working at Union Lake in 2003. Shortly after joining us, she went to school at National K-9 to become a Certified Dog Trainer. In 2015, she obtained her certification through Karen Pryor Clicker Training Academy and is a Karen Pryor Academy (KPA) Certified Training Partner. Melissa is also a Certified Trick Dog Instructor (CTDI), Canine Conditioning Coach (CCC), Certified Stunt Dog Instructor and AKC Judge, AKC Canine Good Citizen Approved Evaluator.

Melissa enjoys working with every dog that walks through our doors. Training dogs to learn behaviors that make their owners happy is what she enjoys the most. This might mean obedience or trick training, confidence building, or any other behavior. The look on their owner’s faces it is the most satisfying reward. Her goal is to improve the bond between owner and dog by opening lines of communication through positive reinforcement training. Melissa currently teaches Puppy Pre-School, Basic Obedience, Advanced Obedience, Agility, Trick Training, Stunt Dog Training, Canine Conditioning, Therapy Dog Classes and the Drop-off & Kennel Training Programs. Melissa also oversees Daycare Introductions and leads the entire training team.

Rebecca Nugent, KPA-CTP, CPDT-KPA

Rebecca NugentRebecca started as a kennel attendant, veterinary assistant, and daycare attendant at Union Lake Pet Services in 2011 and has been a part of the Union Lake training team since 2012. She continues to immerse herself further into the training and behavior world and is especially excited about working with dogs with behavioral problems like anxiety and aggression.

Her passion for dogs with behavioral problems is fueled by her own quirky Jack Russell Terrier. With Leo being her first dog, she quickly sought out the advice and expertise of Union Lake’s training team and veterinary staff for help. After working with her own dog and seeing how many other owners dealt with issues similar to her own, she slowly but surely started learning more and more about dogs with behavioral problems.

In 2015 Rebecca along with several other staff Union Lake decided to pursue a more positive approach to training and did so through Karen Pryor Clicker Training Academy. After a rigorous 6 month long hands on program, they were certified as Professional Trainers through the academy. In 2017 Rebecca also became certified through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers as a Certified Professional Dog Trainer.

Rebecca currently runs our behavior training department which includes the following services: Quirky K9s class, private in-home behavior modification, private in-facility behavior modification, and drop-off training services. She takes pride in using positive training techniques that are based on modern scientific studies and that are completely force free to reduce the fear and anxiety of dogs entered into these programs. Her personal goal in any of these programs is to improve the quality of life for the dog and therefore improving the quality of life for the owner.

Jay Clement

Jay ClementJay has worked as an engineer, writer, teacher, kennel attendant, and a veterinary assistant. Jay came to Union Lake as a training client and joined the Union Lake Training team in 2017.

His love for German Shepherd rescue dogs and a desire to train them to be “Good Citizens” lead him to search for more effective training practices to achieve the desired outcome. He found that method at Union Lake with their training team. At the same time, he found a new passion and a new occupational direction as a canine trainer.

Jay continues to study canine training, latest canine training methods and feels a strong calling to expand traditional training to include enrichment training as well as researching, promoting and developing a canine fitness program.

Jay currently teaches Basic Obedience, Agility and Canine Enrichment as well as Drop-off Training and Kennel Programs.

Kathleen Eales

Kathleen EalesKathleen has had a lifelong love and passion for dogs. As a young adult she lived in the country where pets were all too often abandoned. Many found their way to her doorstep where they were taken in, nursed back to health if needed, and often rehomed to loving families. Kathleen volunteers with a bully breed dog rescues in many capacities – kennel care, dog care, outreach and serving as an officer and board member. These experiences convinced me that I wanted to do more to help dogs and their people.

In May of 2017 she graduated from the Victoria Stilwell Academy of Dog Trainers, thus fulfilling a long held dream of learning how to properly, and positively train dogs and their people. During her time as a student of VSDTA, she was fortunate to be mentored by Melissa Fenstermaker of Union Lake Pet Services.

Kathleen works part time at Union Lake – having a full time position with a national non-profit environmental organization for the past 20 years. She looks forward to the day she can fully pursue her passion of helping shelter and rescue dogs find loving families, and through positive training help families keep the dogs they have.


JeffJeff started working at Union Lake Pet Services in 2016. He works as an assistant at the veterinary hospital in addition to teaching Basic Obedience, Advanced Obedience, Puppy Pre-School, Therapy Dog Classes and the Drop-off & Kennel Training Programs. He also oversees Daycare Introductions and hopes to be a veterinarian. Shortly after joining us, he went to school to master the basic principles of dog training through Karen Pryor Clicker Training Academy and is a Karen Pryor Academy (KPA) Dog Trainer Foundations graduate.


AustinAustin started as a kennel and daycare attendant at Union Lake Pet Services in spring of 2015 and joined the Union Lake Training team by the next spring of 2016. Austin was trained by Melissa and Rebecca on how to understand and apply learning theory effectively with a positive reinforcement based training approach. With years of hands on training experience, Austin is currently pursuing his goal of becoming an AKC Canine Good Citizen evaluator. Austin continues to educate and immerse himself in the field of animal behavior and dog training by attending many educational seminars and lectures whenever he can find them.

Austin has always had a passion to work with all sorts of animals ever since he was young and very much enjoys learning about how animals learn, communicate and behave. Austin loves dogs and helping owners gain a better relationship with their animal through understanding dog body language and creating training plans to help manage and adjust unwanted behaviors. Austin trains other animals as well as a hobby and hopes to one day work with plenty of unusual and exotic animals.

Austin currently teaches the Puppy Preschool, Basic Obedience, Advanced Obedience, Agility, Trick Training and Drop-off & Kennel Training Programs.

"I don't help people with dog problems. I help dogs with people problems."—Austin

Training Frequently Asked Questions

These training questions were asked at our recent Live Chat with our Trainers and we thought we'd share the answers with everyone. You can download this document for the full list!

If you have questions or concerns about your dog’s behavior, please contact our full-time certified trainers at (248) 363-6262 or email melissaf@unionlakepets.com. They are happy to discuss your pet’s behavior and offer training suggestions.

Call today or email Rebecca at rebecca@unionlakepets.com


"Brody came home from training today mentally and physically tired, that's good! We're happy that refresh training with boarding was available!"

Pet Services
Pet Boarding
Pet Grooming
Pet Daycare
Pet Training
Training Calendar
Behavior Modification

Going to the same vet for some 25 years and 2 dogs says something about quality, responsiveness, and the care they give my pet.

Padme always comes home happy and tired after her vacation at Bed and Biscuit.

– Linda

Very caring experience. I like that I wasn't rushed and Mitzi was treated with kindness.

– Judith

Professional, thorough, personable and successful experience. Excellent follow-up.

– Bonne/Rosalind

Awesome staff and doctors. Very helpful and informative.

– Craig