Melanie Cerone, Ph.D., BCBA, CPDT-KA
A Dedication to the Highest Training Education
Dog training is an unregulated industry. Unlike other professions, there are no mandatory requirements for education, supervised experience, certification/licensure, or the maintenance of professional standards.
Given the serious nature of treating canine behavioral issues, including aggression and separation-related problem behaviors, Melanie chooses to take a professional stance toward ongoing education. Should you choose to work with Melanie, she wants you to benefit from the very latest empirical research in and practical application of behavior science principles. And she wants you to enjoy the peace of mind of knowing you’re working with a compassionate professional dedicated to connecting the dots between your training goals and your training results.
Education and Professional Credentials
PA Licensed Psychologist
Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology
M.A. in Clinical Psychology
B.A. in Psychology
Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA)
Graduate Certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis
Specialist Certificate in Organizational Behavior Management
Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed (CPDT-KA)
UW-AAB: University of Washington Certificate in Applied Animal Behavior
CSAT: Certificate in Separation Anxiety Training
CTC: Certificate in Training and Counseling, Honors Graduate, The Academy for Dog Trainers
FFCP: Fear Free Certified Professional
PMCT: Pat Miller Certified Trainer, Graduate of Peaceable Paws Aggression Academy
ABAI: Member of the Association of Behavior Analysts International
ABS: Member of the Animal Behavior Society
APA: Member of the American Psychological Association
APBP: Member of the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts
IAABC: Member of the International Association of Animal Behavior Cons
PennABA: Member of the Pennsylvania Association for Behavior Analysis
PPA: Member of the Pennsylvania Psychological Association
PPG: Member of the Pet Professional Guild
Conferences, Workshops, and Seminars
Melanie regularly attends professional conferences, workshops, and seminars to study with leaders in the science of applied animal behavior and training.
Local Volunteer Work
Melanie volunteers her time and expertise to also serve dogs who have not yet found their forever homes. Along with the Director of Operations at the Providence Animal Center, Melanie trains the shelter’s Training and Behavior Team, comprised of staff and volunteers, to improve the adoptability of dogs through basic manners training and behavior modification. She also provides enrichment and training services for the Women’s Animal Center.
A Background in Science
Melanie has always been grounded in science. As a Licensed Psychologist and Board Certified Behavior Analyst, Melanie understands the importance of scientific research and training, and the ethical obligation practitioners have to hone their skills and stay on top of the latest developments.
Connecting the Dots Between Science and Dog Training
Always fascinated by behavior, Melanie spent her career as a psychologist assisting others on the path to well-being through the power of behavioral science. Melanie was naturally drawn to the science of animal behavior. Understanding canine behavior—and how to positively influence it through science-based behavior change and training techniques—provides Melanie a safe, effective pathway for creating change for her clients.
The Science of Positive Dog Training
Sadly, much of what passes for professional dog training is based on myth, misguided conventional wisdom, and personal experience. For Melanie, this is unacceptable, particularly when there is a large body of science around how dogs learn and how best—and most humanely—to train them. In fact, the continuing cultural debate over training methodology has been long closed in scientific circles. Unfortunately, without a professional governing body, that science has not yet become our norm.
Fortunately, leading organizations within the canine world have taken strong stands for scientifically-sound, positive reinforcement-based training that eschews the use of pain, force, and intimidation as unnecessary, counter-productive, and potentially harmful. These leadership organizations include the American Veterinary Association of Animal Behavior, the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants, the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, among others.
Forging a Path with Clients
Armed with science and a belief in personalizing training plans to fit the people, dogs, and households they’re meant to serve, Melanie works with each client to understand their goals and concerns, their needs and lifestyle restrictions, and what makes their dogs tick. She understands that one size does not fit all when it comes to training plans, and that a plan is only as good as its implementation and results. What matters most at the end of the day is positive change, and that’s what Melanie seeks for her clients.
Understanding canine behavior—and how to positively influence it through science-based behavior change and training techniques—provides Melanie a safe, effective pathway for creating change for her clients.
Ready to forge a path to better dog behavior with Melanie?
She’d love to hear from you.
“Sets everyone up for success”
“Melanie has a gentle, kind and scientific approach to working with both people and dogs that sets everyone up for success.”
–Dayna Villa, CPDT-KSA, Providence Animal Center Director of Operations