Dog Training Puppy Training in Darlington Middlesbrough Stockton Yarm Wynyard Hartlepool Sedgefield Durham PetPals Darlington PetPals Stockton

About Me About Me About Me About Me

About Me

Dog Training Puppy Training in Darlington Middlesbrough Stockton Yarm Wynyard Hartlepool Sedgefield Durham

Hi my name is Greg and I am the man behind Great Paws.

Thank you for taking a look around my site. Please head on over to my social media pages like/follow and say hello! 

So, about me! Well I am a Dog Trainer and all round dog daft person! 

Professional Insight

 I am a member of both the Institute of Modern Dog Trainers and of the Pet Professional Network. Both these organisations set the highest possible professional standards for pet education and care, requiring their members to undergo a rigorous programme of training, assessment and continuous professional development. Why is that important? Because dog training in the UK is unregulated and unlicensed so, technically, anyone can offer this service, regardless of their level of knowledge or experience. My credentials are your assurance that both you and your precious pooch are in the hands of a dedicated professional (as well as passionate dog lover) rather than an enthusiastic amateur who could potentially do more harm than good.

My breadth of experience comes from being a life-long dog owner with many years’ involvement in canine charity support work plus my extensive professional training which is on-going through regular attendance at specialist courses, seminars and workshops, along with self-directed study of the published research of world’s most renowned trainers, behaviourists and subject matter experts. 

I work with a huge variety of dogs and clients: some with new puppies wanting to set off on the right paw; some who want a better understanding of their dog’s needs and instincts to enhance their life together; others who are having a really tough time and need expert behavioural support. Working as a team, we can achieve the right goals for you, your pooch and your family.

I abide by the strict codes of ethics set out by each of my professional organisations. These are listed below and I invite you to read through them to give you some valuable insights into what matters most when making this vital decision for your pet and your family.

All Members of The IMDT agree to abide by The IMDT Code of Ethics:

  • To train dogs professionally with honesty, integrity and in the best interest of the dog, owner, the public and The IMDT.
  • Actively provide and promote force-free training methods and actively reject any methods or equipment that may cause physical or mental discomfort.
  • Continue Professional development through books, workshops, courses & seminars.
  • Respect the privacy and confidentiality of clients.
  • Carry suitable professional insurance including public liability.
  • Members agree to work within their professional limits and agree to refer owners with needs beyond those limits to a suitable professional.
  • Provide and promote science based, proven dog training principles to a high, professional standard.
  • Avoid positive punishment as a tool for training dogs.
  • Accept IMDT Committee decisions as final.
  • Proactively benefit dogs and dog owners.
  • Proactively promote The IMDT.
  1. provide the best long term/follow up support for clients.
  2. To respect the privacy and confidentiality of clients and other members.
  3. To carry the appropriate insurance for your services, including public liability.
  4. To continue professional and personal development in all areas of marketing, practical skills and updating current knowledge of pet care, training and welfare legislations.
  5. To actively provide and promote force-free training and handling methods.
  6. To reject training and/or handling methods that cause unnecessary discomfort, both physical or mental; This includes verbal and physical corrections and training tools or equipment used in training and everyday handling methods that are designed to startle, scare or be aversive to dogs through: intimidation, tightening, restricting to prevent pulling, pain, shock.
  7. Tools and equipment we actively reject and do not promote the use of in training and everyday handling methods include but not exhaustive to are spray collars, pet correctors, physical or verbal corrections to intimidate or startle, choke or check chain collars,  prong collars, shock collars and *slip leads. *Restricting head collars i.e. haltis or harnesses that tighten and restrict the dog to reduce pulling (i.e no pull harnesses). *These are all subject to individual cases so please see 8 for details of weaning off period or request more information via our team.
  8. In some circumstances we understand that some of your clients may already use some of the above tools or equipment. Or without a halti the dog may become a danger to the owner or itself. We suggest a weaning off period or to introduce a harness where appropriate or in a combination with a head harness as above and re-educate/teach your clients into a more appropriate alternative. We are happy to help you through this process as we understand clients can be sensitive to changes so this needs to be approached in a tactful and professional manner. In the case of slip leads, in some instances, partcularly in rescue work, slip leads may need to be used when other methods of handling cannot. This is particularly understandable in cases where dogs are lead shy/collar shy. Please get in contact for our official full statement on haltis or concerns or information with any of the equipment listed above. Please note this is not an exhaustive list, is subject to change and individual situations are taken into account.
  9. To only take on clients and their pets with whom you can work within your professional limits. If these go beyond the following you must either:
    • Agree to refer the client on to another professional, who has the appropriate skills or knowledge.
    • Continue professional development to enhance this skillset or knowledge.
    • Seek appropriate assessments or mentoring opportunities to further your knowledge.
  10. To not spam other members with unsolicited emails or messages, of your services or products, unless they have requested your help.
  11. You will not use other professionals’ images/infographics without prior consent.
  12. You will not copy and paste another professionals’ content and use it as your own. All blogs written on you pages/website should be in your own words or if using someone else’s material quoted and referenced.

Personal Insight


My life has been enriched by many dogs, from the Boxers I grew up with, through a rescue Ridgeback/Great Dane Cross, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and my present pooch family, which consists of an elderly Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and two rescue German Shepherd Dogs. 

For some years now I have been an active volunteer with the German Shepherd Dog Rescue (GSDR), helping fellow owners with their rescues and being part of the team that runs a monthly charity walk. Through my work with GSDR, my wife and I took on our most recent rescue, Betty Boo, who often makes appearances in my training videos. Social anxiety can cause Betty Boo to bark, lunge and redirect her frustration when she sees other dogs but she is now benefiting from daily training and enrichment walks along with the other members of our pooch family.

Hugo, our other GSD rescue, came from Dogs Trust. We knew very little of his history but it was clear he wasn’t a family pet, more likely some form of guard dog. Despite his early issues he is now a big teddy bear who loves nothing more than a tennis ball or a HUGE stick / small tree!

Finally there is the “princess” of the family, also known as Lucy. She is our twelve year old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who is ruled by her belly and loves cuddles. Her joints are not as supple as they used to be so, whilst she does enjoy exploring the woods close to home, she often makes use of the Great Paws Buggy when we go out as a family for bigger walks. 

My Mission

My mission is simple: to provide an enriching personal experience for your dog, you, and the whole family to build the foundations of a happy and fulfilling life together.

Your pet’s welfare is my absolute priority and I guarantee to treat all of my clients with honesty and fairness. I am fortunate enough to know many amazing professionals in this field and if, for any reason, I believe you need help outside of my current specialisms, I promise to help you find the expertise you need.