Meet Our Dog Training Staff Tampa

“I have referred hundreds of my clients and their dogs to Courteous Canine for puppy classes and behavior consultations. I trust Angelica’s experience and judgment on complicated behavior cases and I know all the trainers at Courteous Canine employ only positive reinforcement training methods and are enthusiastic educators.” –Dr. Shelly Harper, Owner Hyde Park Veterinary Clinic

Angelica Steinker

President and Founder Credentials: M.Ed., PCBC-A, C.D.B.T., C.D.B.C., CAP2
Specialties: Dog Aggression, Agility, Rally Obedience, Learning and Behavior
Pets: One Border Collies named Power, and two Papillions named Bella and Moment

ks-power-in-arms For more than 19 years full time, Angelica Steinker, president and founder of Courteous Canine, has specialized in dog training methods that create, “Results the Fun Way.” Using Consent Testing and Empowerment Training Angelica and her team of trainers have successfully trained thousands of puppies and adult dogs in basic manners/obedience, trick training, problem behavior modification, agility, dock jumping and other skills, all while increasing the bond of trust between dogs and their human companions.

Angelica is a published author in the field of dog training and agility. Her books, Agility Success: Training and Competing with Your Dog in the Winning Zone and Click and Play Agility, address the handler of the agility team and the use of clicker training techniques in the sport respectively, and emphasize the importance of playing and bonding in order to train agility behaviors to the highest level. Her newest project is on dog aggression, which is something she is particularly passionate about.

She is on the steering committee of the Pet Professionals Guild and a founding member of this cutting edge association for force-free trainers and animal professionals. She is the co-founder and former faculty of DogNostics Career College a pet care, dog training and dog behavior trade school ( Angelica has been published in the Journal of Applied Companion Animal Behavior and the Journal of Veterinary Behavior, both of which are peer-reviewed professional journals. She has been published as a regular columnist in BARKS from the Guild, the APDT (Association of Pet Dog Trainers) Chronicle of the Dog Newsletter, Dog & Handler, Animal Trainer Magazine, Dog Sport Magazine, Dalmatian Quarterly, and Clean Run, the dog agility magazine.

She is a former Advisory Board member and faculty at the Companion Animal Sciences Institute and is also a CASI dog behavior program graduate. Angelica is also accredited as a Canine Behavior Consultant through the Pet Professional Accreditation Board, and certified through Applied Animal Behavior Professionals and International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants and the only one in the state of Florida with 18 years full time experience. Angelica is a sought-after public speaker who has presented at conferences Internationally including in Great Britain and Brazil. She has also presented at the famous Camp Gone to the Dogs in Vermont, the U.S. Pet Professional Guild’s Summit, the Association of Pet Dog Trainers Annual Conference, BARK Agility Camp, and Karen Pryor’s Clicker Expo. Angelica is a former AKC agility judge and a current North American Diving Dogs judge. Angelica has a Master’s degree in Education, which has served as the foundation for her continued certifications in dog behavior and her extensive understanding of emotional learning, operant and classical conditioning, the science of how animals and people learn. To schedule an appointment with Angelica, contact Courteous Canine today!


Monica Crowley

Monica is a graduate of the University of Central Florida and is certified in Canine Communication and Pet First Aid. She is pursuing dog training certification via PPAB and is working under the supervision of her mentor, Angelica Steinker. She has a passion for all things dog and a particular interest in behavioral issues. Aggression, separation related issues and excessive fear are strong areas of interest.

Monica is currently Courteous Canine, Inc.s Office Manager and enjoys traveling and running.

When not working at Courteous Canine Inc., you can find Monica with her own two rescue dogs, Moki and Dublin, on a long walk, at the lure course, or playing fetch at a park.

Alex Walker

Professional Canine Trainer – Accredited, PCT Level 2, TrickMeister Apprentice, CGC and STAR Puppy Evaluator, Licensed Pet Dog Ambassador Instructor/Assessor

A graduate of the University of South Florida, Alex holds Bachelor’s degrees in both Psychology and Anthropology and remains a member of The National Honor Society of Psychology as well as The National Society of Collegiate Scholars.

Active in the field of animal rescue and care Alex has worked alongside technicians at Tampa Bay Veterinary Emergency Services within their foster/rescue program and has hands on experience assisting in the care, rehabilitation and adoption of a number of species, dogs, cats or otherwise. Along with this she has completed internships through companies like that of Southeastern Guide Dogs Inc. where she spent three months working with the staff within the Genetics and Reproduction Department and participated in guide dog behavioral evaluations, early puppy education programs and the cryopreservation and breeding of the next generation of guide dogs.

When not working at Courteous Canine Inc. you can find Alex just thirty minutes away at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo, where she works as an Animal Ambassador Trainer; helping to connect zoo goers with the animals in her care while educating guests on the importance of animal conservation and the power of reward based animal training.

Alex is a Professional Canine Trainer – Accredited, Certified Pet Care Technician (Level 2), AKC Canine Good Citizen and STAR Puppy Evaluator, TrickMeister Apprentice, Licensed Pet Dog Ambassador Instructor and Assessor as well as a member of the Pet Professional Guild. She has published training articles in the PPG publication BARKS and is always looking to expand her experience in the field of animal behavior and training – regularly attending educational conferences and workshops she recently completed Precision Behavior’s Advanced Animal Training Workshop sponsored by the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. She looks forward to continuing to grow with the help of her rescue dogs Leo and Dante and the wonderful staff and clients at Courteous Canine Inc.

Dariann Ludwig

dariannCertified Pet Care Technician Level 2

Dariann Ludwig was born and raised in Tampa Florida. She is a college student at USF studying pre med with the goals to apply to Veterinary school in a couple of years. She has a strong passion for animals and will do anything to keep them safe and healthy. Dariann parents two Labrador retrievers of who she says, “they are my world, I love them.” She is an intern at Skyway animal hospital, where she shadows the veterinarian, and watches surgery. In addition she also volunteers at Dade city Wild Things. Dariann supports the ASPCA and she is certified pet care technician from the Dognostics Career College.

Melissa Jensen

melissajCertified Pet Care Technician Level 2, Dog Behavior Technician, AKC Star Puppy and CGC Evaluator

Melissa moved to Florida from New York. As a long time dog owner she soon realized that dogs are her passion and as a result spent five years working at a no kill shelter. This enabled her to find homes for many dogs and cats which was a highly rewarding experience. Melissa has also worked technical support for Verizon which she eventually left to pursue a career in dog grooming. After 4 years of grooming, she became very interested in training and behavior. She began to enroll her own dog, Ziggy, in a variety of classes including AKC Canine Good Citizen. She discovered a passion for dog training and enrolled in DogNostics Career College’s Dog Behavior Consultant program. Melissa enjoys learning about dog behavior and working with dogs. She finds it fascinating to watch dogs playing and to observe non-verbal communication. In her free time Melissa teaches her own dogs new tricks and spends time hanging out with them and family. She and her husband parent 5 dogs, 4 cats, a Russian tortoise and a crested gecko. Melissa is a member of  Pet Professional Guild she is currently working as a Canine Camp Counselor and does extensive Operational duties for Courteous Canine, Inc. DogSmith of Tampa.

Geena Lang

geenaPet Sitter, Advanced Pet Care Technician Level 2

Born and raised in the Florida sun, Geena Lang has always had dogs, from Great Danes to Yorkie-Poodles. After trying a few different paths, she found that working with animals was her passion. She hopes to one day work with, and train assistance and therapy dogs for veterans. She has completed her Advanced Pet Care Technician training via DogNostics Career College ( and is continuing her education by having enrolled in their Dog Training Program. Geena has two dogs, Athena, an all black German shepherd/ huskie mix, who she adores and Nyx a Malinois . She competes in dock jumping, and disc dog. Geena is a member of the Pet Professional Guild ( and offers pet sitting services in the New Tampa/Wesley Chapel areas. She has a special interest dog training trick behaviors, as they related to assistance dog training and pet therapy.

Beth Napolitano

bethAdvanced Pet Care Technician Level 2, Dog Behavior Technician Intern

Beth was a staff hospital nurse for 40 years and enjoyed working in Hospice’s Home Care Division for a brief time. She took 8 years off from nursing to own and operate a successful bakery business with her husband. Beth and her husband share their home with a cat and 2 Beagles, Murphy and Sadie. Murphy and Sadie have been in puppy kindergarten, fun scent games, and agility classes at Courteous Canine, Inc. over the last 2 1/2 years. Murphy earned his Canine Good Citizen certification as well. Beth and Sadie have done private behavior counseling with Angelica due to anxiety issues. She learned skills to successfully manage Sadie’s anxiety using the positive methods. Beth is now excited to begin online classes at Dognostics Career College where she is working toward her Advanced Pet Care Technician and also her dog training certification. She is looking forward to joining the Courteous Canine, Inc. DogSmith of Tampa Team where she will begin training and assisting with classes. She loves the fun atmosphere and positive, force-free training methods used by all their instructors.

Joni Miccolis

joni-m-pet-sitterCertified Pet Care Technician Level 2

Pets: A Lab mix named Mickey and a Yorkie poo named Coco. Joni grew up with dogs and cats in her home town in New Jersey. She and her husband got their first “child” a yellow lab when they got married and moved to Tampa in 1989. Twenty five years later they have never been without a dog or 2 as a part of their family. Joni has a Bachelor’s degree in psychology she worked as a behavior Specialist providing behavior plans for adults with physical and developmental disabilities. She has also Volunteered for Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida. She has completed her Advanced Pet Care Technician Certification via DogNostics Career College. She is also a member of Pet Professional Guild.

Laura Capuana

lauraAdvanced Pet Care Technican Level 2

Originally from Italy, Laura grew up with many animals, such as dogs, cats, ducks, rabbits, chickens and even had a goat. As a child, she would often find abandoned animals on her way home from school and take them home with her to give them loving care. You could say she is an animal lover at heart and keeps a warm place for rescue animals. Her passion for animals led her to adopting a dog (daughter) named Roxy. Roxy is a Coonhound mix who loves to play and learn new tricks. Laura has an interest for animal behavior; especially dog aggression, which she will pursue in the future. Laura is a Certified Pet Care Technician (Level 2) from the DogNostics Career College and is also CPR and first-aid certified through Pet Tech. Laura is also a member of the Pet Professional Guild.

Scott Poteri

scottAdvanced Pet Care Technician Level 2, NADD Dock Diving Judge

Some say Scott still wants to know where he will live, when he grows up. He was born in Nova Scotia Canada, and since moving to the US in the 80’s, he has lived in New York City, Stroudsburg PA, Sarasota FL, San Diego CA, Petoskey MI, Monterey CA, and now back in the Tampa bay Area. Between some of that time, he, and his wife, two Yorkshire Terriers and a Golden Retriever lived in a motorhome and traveled through almost every state in the country.

Scott has always related more to animals than people and has never been without an animal of some kind as a pet in his life. He has worked in animal rescue has volunteered, fostered, and placed dogs with United Yorkie Rescue

His current Golden Retriever” Wish” Has earned her AKC Canine Good Citizen certification and they are a registered pet therapy team with Project Pup. They do weekly pet therapy sessions with the patients at the Suncoast Hospice.

Scott is a member of Pet Professional Guild and is pet first aid certified and is certified as a Pet Care Technician Level 2 from DogNostics Career College and is currently working on certification in their Dog Behavior program. Scott is now a CGC and AKC Star puppy evaluator. Since joining Courteous Canine, he has found he has a strong interest in learning about and understanding dog aggression.

Scott enjoys all dog sports, but his main passion is competitive Dock Diving, with Golden Retrievers, Wish, and Doobie. “Team Wish” have earned 3 NADD titles, plus earned an invite and participated in the Eukanuba NADD Nationals in 2016 through 2018.

Alicia Conover

Alicia graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, minoring in Zoology. She focused her education on animal behavior and participated in conducting ongoing research on canine cognition. She has spent 8 years working in animal shelters/rescues helping cats, dogs and small mammals find and stay in their forever homes as well as counsel people about their pet’s behavior issues to help keep them in their home and out of the shelter. She has a passion for animal behavior for all animals (including humans!) but particularly loves working with cats. She has expertise in working with all sorts of cat behavior topics including litter box issues, cat introductions, cat-human aggression and clicker training cats – yes, you CAN train cats! In addition to training dogs and cats, Alicia teaches high school Marine Science and Anatomy & Physiology.