A Compassionate and Talented Dog Trainer You Can Rely On

Understanding Fido provides positive, in-home, community-based and/or virtual training sessions to help you and your dog navigate your daily routine with mutual understanding, confidence and connection.  Be it supporting developmental stages, or unraveling behaviors you find challenging, we're here for you.

A woman and her dog are playing in the grass.

About Our Owner

Amy Cranmer, OTR/L, CPDT-KA, FDM is a graduate of Clemson University and of the Medical University of South Carolina. Her degrees and career prior to being a dog trainer focused on observation, assessment, and shaping of behaviors and skills.

First, she spent decades educating and collaborating with her colleagues, clients, and their families which refined her communication skills and her team approach.  Now, her “non-dog” career continues to be an invaluable experience from which she draws as she supports her training clients and their dogs holistically.

With licensure and board certification requirements from her prior career, Amy has always understood and appreciated the importance of accountability and proof of competency in any professional field.  After transitioning to dog training, Amy earned the title of Certified Professional Dog Trainer-Knowledge Assessed (CPDT-KA) from the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers.  This designation indicates that Amy has completed several hundred hours working with clients, dogs, and other highly respected trainers.  In addition, it indicates that Amy passed an extensive, 3-hour examination of knowledge critical for effective dog training and that she obtained character references from veterinarians familiar with her training skills and methods.  This title also ensures that Amy is participating in continuing education consistently, focusing on the latest research and the most effective and compassionate techniques in dog training, behavioral supports, and canine enrichment.  Amy earned the designation of Family Dog Mediator (FDM) after completing the extensive program and competency testing of the L.E.G.S. Applied Ethology Family Dog Mediation Professional Course created by industry leader, author, and Ethologist Kim Brophey.

Pursuing a Different Career

While working full-time in her previous career, Amy decided to hone her natural talent with dogs.

She pursued education for aspiring dog trainers. Dedicated to compassionate and humane techniques, Amy studied force-free  and rewards-based dog training curricula. She has been mentored by two positive, rewards-based training experts and continues to collaborate with colleagues regularly.

Amy immerses herself in ‘all things dog’ on a daily basis, with involvement in groups and organizations that share her passion for humane techniques and ongoing growth of her skills.  She seeks out continuing education opportunities that provide the most up-to-date information on research-based training techniques and animal learning.  Her focus is always on finding the best ways to support her clients---both canine and human.  Amy completed the intensive Aggression in Dogs Master Course, developed and presented by world renowned expert in aggressive behavior, Michael Shikashio.  She also completed the intensive Separation Anxiety Program, Separation Anxiety Shadowing Program, and Advanced Separation Anxiety Shadowing Program all three of which were developed and presented by Veterinarian and international separation anxiety specialist Dr. Moira Hechenleitner, DVM, CSAT.

A dog sitting in the grass with its head on his paws.
A dog sitting in the grass with trees and sky behind it.

Exciting Adventures with Her Own Dogs

Many of Amy’s dogs showed a strong interest in hitting the road and interacting with people in the community. This led to her dogs “emceeing” school assemblies, serving as “demo dogs” during community animal care presentations, representing rescue groups at fundraisers, and engaging as “special guests” during local television news broadcasts

Her dogs also passed various evaluations and assessments that earned them nationally and internationally recognized designations through multiple organizations. Some of these organizations include:

Therapy Dogs International

Delta Society (now Pet Partners)

American Kennel Club (the Canine Good Citizen designation)

These designations allowed Amy and her dogs to participate in various therapy work at nursing homes, schools, churches, and many community events.

Amy’s Long History of Caring for Animals

Since before she was old enough to remember, Amy has been sharing her life with a laundry list of species from guinea pigs to donkeys and goldfish to horses. There was also that brief (but entertaining!) stint with a beloved visiting rooster named Reggie.

All introductions to a new animal species have added priceless educational opportunities in the nuances of how animals learn and interact with humans.  Amy takes pride in having the privilege of sharing her life with so many amazing animals, some of whom are literally newsworthy.

For Amy, all of these animals are responsible for the most impactful pieces of her education.

A donkey is looking at the camera.

Learn More About Us

Get more information about our business and services. We’re looking forward to hearing from you!