Meet the team behind Australia’s most well behaved pets
From their ears to tails, dogs talk to you with their whole body. Experienced trainers Ryan and Jen Tate reveal ways to recognise your dog's subtle signs. Watch Part 1 of our special Dogs of Oz video series.
Troublesome terrier? Kleptomaniac kelpie? No matter the canine quandary, a dynamic duo of dog behaviourists know how to help.
Introducing Ryan and Jen Tate.
Armed with more than 20 years of combined experience, these real-life Dr Doolittles and Dogs of Oz ambassadors have worked hard to become two of Australia's most in-demand and respected animal trainers.
WATCH THEIR TIPS ON LEARNING THE SECRET LANGUAGE OF DOGS ABOVE
Dog behaviourists Ryan and Jen Tate with their dogs. Dog behaviourists Ryan and Jen Tate with their dogs.
"Dogs have so much to offer us," Mr Tate said.
"I thoroughly enjoy seeing the genetics of dogs shine through in their behaviour, whether it's a cavalier giving the best cuddle in the world, a husky pulling a sled, or a border collie herding sheep, there is nothing more beautiful than watching a dog do what they were born to do."
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Given the married couple's critter credentials, it's unsurprising the seeds for romance were sown while working at Sydney's iconic Taronga Zoo - while both independently ran dog training classes.
"We were introduced at the zoo," Mr Tate said. "After my first date I rang my sister and told her I found the woman I was going to marry. I proposed a few months later."
Their son quickly followed and the pair started Tate Animal Training.
"Looking back, it was an incredibly risky move," Ryan said. "But it has paid off in so many ways."
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LAST DAY TO JOIN THE LOUNGE So today is the FINAL day if you want to join me in my NEW members lounge! I am closing the doors at 10pm tonight and won't open them again until 2020, so if you don't want to miss out head over to the link below or click link in the bio https://www.tateonlinetraininghub.com/ryan-s-launch-members-lounge Thank you to everyone who has joined so far, I am so stoked!!! What a great community of people and can't wait to share the journey with you all!
They initially specialised in dog training but have evolved the business to offer workshops, online courses, TV and film work and consultations at zoos and aquariums.
The Tates also own and handle a variety of specialised conservation dogs, trained to locate a range of animals such as owls and koalas. The latter saw Ryan make headlines during the devastating NSW bushfires.
While the catastrophe coincided with the birth of their twins, the hard-core conservationists were determined to help the endangered koala population via their koala-sniffing detection dog, four-year-old English springer spaniel, Taylor.
"Taylor can cover enormous areas very quickly," Mr Tate said. "When the bushfires hit, we knew we had a responsibility to get her out finding injured koalas."
To date, she has found 15 - including a joey - in affected areas and was even featured in overseas media as far as the US and Germany.
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Tay tay! ❤️❤️ She has spent the last two weeks at home not working and is driving everyone mad with her enthusiasm and energy levels towards everything. Literally bouncing off the walls!! Luckily come Saturday, Ryan and her hit the road again for 3 weeks of conservation work across 2 locations in NSW. Getting her to sit still for a photo was a bloody challenge!
For most couples, fusing married life and an ever-expanding business with the demands of two newborns, a five-year-old and a house full of working dogs, wouldn't work, yet Ryan and Jen continue to thrive.
"I don't mean to sound corny," Mr Tate said. "But Jen is some sort of cross between an angel and the energiser bunny. We both enjoy chaos and are driven by passion, so it just works for us. No two days are ever the same and that's the way we like it."
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Gorgeous little Chappy Chapman standing tall and proud for his graduation 🎓 from puppy school tonight. ... This little guy has a very important role to grow into as a PTSD assistance dog for a retired veteran. He will continue training with us for the next year and then down the track sit the Public Access Test in order to legally accompany Arthur everywhere to offer 24/7 emotional support. ... It’s very clear these two already have an unwavering bond. Go Chappy you little beauty. 👏👏#assistancedog #servicedogs #puppytraining @wauchope_vets
The Tates recognise just how important dogs are in our everyday lives.
"At a chemical level, dogs have legitimate mood altering abilities," Ms Tate said.
"Whether it's resting their chin on your leg or wiggling their butt when you get home from a rough day at work, they genuinely make us feel better about life. Dog behaviourist Jen Tate training her pooch. Dog behaviourist Jen Tate training her pooch.
"I am literally surrounded by dogs all the time and know more about them than the average person, yet I'm still amazed at the emotional connections that me and my family form with them."
This is what fuels the duo's commitment to their profession - seeing the positive impact they're making, both to the lives of dogs and their owners, is the real pay-off.
"I think we all have a desire to be part of things that are bigger than ourselves," Ms Tate said.
"We have classes of pet owners that depend on us, regional communities that we do workshops for, and a huge amount of conservation projects that we are able to make a genuine positive impact upon. That is all the motivation we need."
"We're both so lucky to do a job we love," Mr Tate said.
"Genuinely, we wouldn't change a thing."