Nicole Pfaller-Sadovsky, PhD

Nicole Pfaller-Sadovsky owns dogs since 1994, and since 2003 she is a proponent and advocate of positive-reinforcement based, cruelty-free training approaches. While having long standing experience in dog training (20+ years) her academic background in ethology and applied behaviour analysis, as well as respective continuing education (CE) are equally important to her.

Nicole graduated with a BSc (Hons) First Class Honours Degree in Applied Animal Behaviour (Sparsholt College, University of Portsmouth) in 2015. The respective thesis investigated “Motor laterality and personality traits in different breeds of gundog (Canis lupus familiaris)”.

She then went on to conduct a Master of Science (MSc) course in Applied Behaviour Analysis (Queen’s University Belfast) and graduated with Distinction in December 2016. The respective thesis was “Evaluation of functional behaviour assessment and backward chaining procedure to reduce human-directed aggressive behaviour labelled as ‘resource guarding’ in domestic dogs (Canis lupus familiaris)”. Resulting paper "It is mine! Using clicker training as a treatment of object guarding in 4 companion dogs (Canis lupus familiaris)" was published in September 2017 in peer-reviewed Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Application and Research.

From March 2017 on, Nicole was working towards her Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Biology (Applied Behaviour Analysis) at Queen’s University Belfast and graduated in 2022.

In 2013, Nicole became one of the first Dog Trainer in Accordance with Animal Welfare (awarded by the Austrian Federal Ministry of Health) and a Certified Behavior Adjustment Training® Instructor (CBATI®). Additionally, Nicole acted as contributing author for the Austrian pet dog magazine Your Dog®, writing articles about learning and behaviour. Throughout the years of 2012, 2013 and 2015, Nicole had the pleasure to give webinars (web-based seminars) for, involving topics like gundog training (dummy training) and multiple-dog household. Webinars by Nicole about gundog training (dummy training) are held since 2017.

As stated above, CE is of great importance to Nicole. Hence, she and her husband can be regularly found at conferences, seminars and other educational events across Europe and the United States. Dr. Susan Friedman, Dr. Susan Schneider, Dr. Jesus Rosales-Ruiz, Mary Hunter M.S., Ken Ramirez and Bob Bailey are just a couple of examples of speakers that helped shaping Nicole’s and Gernot’s training philosophy. For a detailed overview of Nicole’s CEs please visit her page at

Currently Nicole and Gernot own and live with six Retrievers (Golden and Nova Scotia Duck Tolling) and one black & white Border Collie female in the beautiful surroundings of Puchberg am Schneeberg. Please feel free to visit Gernot and Nicole’s FCI kennel website