Bob and Daisy play "swimming fetchies" on the beach
Bob and Daisy play "swimming fetchies" on the beach, Hunting Island, SC.

Bob Ryder, CSAT, PMCT-2, CPDT-KA

Bob specializes in treating dogs with separation anxiety, helping families resolve this complex canine behavior. Separation anxiety impacts the humans as well as the dog. We offer gentle, methodical, science-based training that helps dogs learn to feel safe when they’re alone. Bob also serves as a faculty advisor for the Victoria Stilwell Academy.

Bob’s Credentials at a glance:
  • Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer (CSAT)
  • Level 2 Pat Miller Certified Dog Trainer (PMCT-2)
  • Faculty Advisor, Victoria Stilwell Academy (VSA)
  • Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed (CPDT-KA)
  • Professional Member – Pet Professional Guild (PPG)
  • Member of the Shock Free Coalition
  • Bachelors of Science, Psychology, Juniata College
Bob has been training dogs privately for over 35 years, and professionally since 2009.

Using the principles of canine behavioral science, Bob gently trains dogs without intimidation, pain, fear, or force. This is his philosophy because because in addition to being humane, techniques relying on dominance and aversive punishment do not address the cause of the behavior, and often result in unintended behavioral side effects. (See link from American Veterinary Science of Animal Behavior.)

Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer

Bob completed an intensive course with Malena DeMartini to become a Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer. Malena is renowned for pioneering the protocol to help dogs with separation related problems, and says, “Bob is an extraordinarily talented separation anxiety trainer. Any client of Bob’s will not only be guided carefully through their training to accomplish their dog’s alone-time success, but they will also have the best cheerleader to help keep them motivated throughout. I could not recommend Bob more highly – he is a gem among gems.”

Additional Education

He also participated in 6 one-week group internship classes and two private apprenticeship weeks (involving over 360 hours of teaching and training) with Pat Miller at Peaceable Paws, and completed Dr. Brian Hare’s “Dog Emotion and Cognition” online course, as well as the eight week online “Living and Learning with Animals” course with Susan G. Friedman, Ph.D.

Continuing Education

Committed to furthering his education, Bob regularly takes courses to enhance his knowledge and training skills. By attending conferences, workshops, seminars and virtual learning opportunities he stays up to date on the latest scientific findings in canine behavior and the most effective humane training techniques. 

Bob has taken courses from Jean Donaldson, Alexandra Horowitz, Kay Laurence, Patri­cia McConnell, Adam Miklosi, Ken Ramirez, Terry Ryan, Kathy Sdao, Michael Shikashio, Grisha Stewart, Kristina Spaulding, Sue Sternberg, Victoria Stilwell, Nicole Wild, and many others.


Bob was born and raised in northern New Jersey. His lives with his wife Susan (a native Californian) and their Labradaughter, Daisy in Central Illinois. Because separation anxiety training is done virtually he can help clients from all over the world

Our Promise

Because the knowledge of animal behavior is incomplete, I cannot guarantee a behavior outcome. There are many variables involved in animal behavior including genetics, the overall health of the animal, and the client’s commitment to the training plan. That said, I can increase the probability of the desired outcome if you are willing to work as training partners.

Here is what I can promise – I will …

  • Be honest and transparent with you about the likely outcomes, and inform you during the first appointment if I do not believe I can be of help. 
  • Use training techniques based on the highest levels of current, scientifically-sound research.
  • Use only methods that are gentle for your dog – force-free, fear-free, and pain-free. I will never ask you to do anything that might damage your relationship with your best friend.
  • Fully support you during our training jury.

In return, I ask that you be pro-active and committed to working with your dog, utilize all features and benefits made available to you, and follow the instructions I give you in order to achieve the highest level of results.

Bob and Kayla on the beach
“Bob is a rising star. Dogs and humans alike will benefit from his knowledge and compassion.”
Pat Miller
Peaceable Paws
Bob brings skill, honor and compassion to the dog training profession. He’s the best!
Lisa Waggoner
Cold Nose College
“Bob does amazing work! The resource he offers the pets of McLean County is a wonderful gift."
Torry Steffen, DVM
Highland Pet Hospital

Let us help you bring out the best in your best friend!

Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer
Peaceable Paws Certified Trainer
Shock-free Coalition
Proud Member Pet Professionals Guild
Badge for Victoria Stilwell Academy Faculty Advisor
Pet Industry Advocacy International
Text over rainbow image - text identifying us as an LGBTQ+ friendly business.