ABOUT

Kyoko Johnson has been training dogs and their people in Hawaii since 2008.  Her love of dogs came from volunteering for various dog rescue organizations and shelters on the island. Since beginning her dog training career, she has earned various professional training and instructor certifications.


Kyoko’s current focus is canine scent detection. She has competed in various nose work trials, earning “high in trial” with multiple dogs.  Since 2011, she has trained and coached numerous dog & handler teams in scent work skills. In addition to training pet dogs, Kyoko is a conservation detection dog trainer and handler. Past projects include working for a wind farm habitat conservation program which utilized canines to locate endangered seabirds and bats to measure environmental impact; and a pilot study in collaboration with US Fish & Wildlife Service and US Geological Survey, which measured the efficacy of utilizing detection dogs to lower avian botulism-related mortality in koloa maoli, an endangered Hawaiian duck (see more on the study at USGS’s website). Kyoko most recently worked with US Fish & Wildlife on a project to utilize detector dogs to assist their monitoring effort of invasive yellow crazy ants that cause harm to seabirds at a remote atoll wildlife refuge. She is also conducting various projects through her non-profit organization Conservation Dogs of Hawaiʻi, including training dogs to detect invasive weeds and rodents. Follow her conservation dog adventures on Instagram and Facebook.

Kyoko and her husband Tor live on the North Shore of Oʻahu with their dogs. Kyoko continues to attend and host educational seminars whenever possible in order to stay up to date on the most cutting edge training methods.

Professional Certifications

Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers – Certified & Knowledge Assessed (CPDT-KA)

National Association of Canine Scent Work – Certified Nose Work Instructor™ (CNWI) and Odor Recognition Test Certifying Official

Karen Pryor Academy – Certified Training Partner (KPA CTP)

In Situ Foundation – Certified Bio-Dog Trainer (CBDT)


Continuing Education

* 2021 Virtual Nose Work Camp
* 2019-2021 Webinars:
~ ~ ~ Scent Work: The Brain, Attention and Emotional Well-being with Dr. Kathy Murphy, DVM
~ ~ ~ Putting Theory into Practice, Dos and Don'ts for Scent Training with Bill Gaskins
~ ~ ~ Motivation, Behavior & The Brain with Simon Gadbois PhD
~ ~ ~ Source Not Odor Parts 1 & 2 with Gail McCarthy
~ ~ ~ Foundations in Canine Odor Detection Training with Dr. Lucia Lazarowski
~ ~ ~ Nose Work webinars with Leah Gangelhoff, Amy Herot, et al
~ ~ ~ Leash Handling for the Detection Dog Handler webinar with Fred Helfers
~ ~ ~ Handling is So Much More Than Handling the Leash webinar with Christina Bunn
~ ~ ~ Overview of Recent Research by US Navy webinar (canine olfactory generalization / discrimination balance) with Lauryn DeGreef (Naval Research Laboratory)
~ ~ ~ Chemistry of Odor webinar with Lauryn DeGreef (Naval Research Laboratory)
~ ~ ~ Earth, Wind and Odor webinar with Lauralea Oliver
* 2020 NACSW Enhanced Education Weekend for instructors
* 2020 Virtual Nose Work Camp with Christina Bunn, Jacy Kelley, et al
* 2019 – Conservation Dog Symposium at Hawaii Conservation Conference
* 2019, 2016, 2015, 2012 – K9 Nose Work® Training Camps
* 2019 – Extreme Elevation online course with Kimberly Buchanan
* 2017 – California Narcotic Canine Association and NACSW Joint Conference, attended seminars include:
~ ~ ~ Ken Furton, PhD – Chemistry of Scent
~ ~ ~ David Adebimpe, PhD – Scientific Look at Scent Training Aids
~ ~ ~ Andie Thompkins, PhD – The Neuroscience of Canine Vision and Olfaction
~ ~ ~ Alex Rygg, PhD – The Anatomy and Fluid Dynamics of Canine Olfaction
* 2016 – National Institute of Health Clinical Research Training
* 2016 – National Institute of Health Research Ethics Training
* 2016 – In Situ Foundation – Cancer & Bio Medical Detection Dog Training Certification Program
* 2016 – Fred Helfers – From Foundation to Finesse workshop
* 2016 – California Narcotic Canine Association and NACSW Joint Conference, attended seminars include:
~ ~ ~ Steve Austin – Obtain & Maintain Excellence in Scent Work
~ ~ ~ Mel English – Understanding K9 Olfactory & The Hunt
~ ~ ~ Joe Oberding – Hard Surface/Urban Tracking
~ ~ ~ Frank Romano – Selection to Detection
~ ~ ~ Jill Cline, PhD – Nutrition for the Working K9
* 2015 – Fred Helfers – K9 Olfaction and Odor Seminar
* 2014 – Jill Marie O’Brien – K9 Nose Work® Element Specialty Trial Prep Workshop
* 2014 – Julie Gaunt – K9 Nose Work® NW2-Level Container Search workshop
* 2013 – Detection Dog Training Seminar with Jane Sharp (London Heathrow Airport K9 Unit)
* 2013 – Diabetic Alert Dog Trainer Seminars with Rita Martinez
* 2013-2014 – K9 Nose Work® Instructor Certification Program
* 2013 – Pairing Pavlovian Conditioning with Operant Odor-Discrimination Training Webinar
* 2013 – Jill Marie O’Brien – Continuing Nose Work® workshop
* 2012 – Jill Marie O’Brien and Julie Gaunt – Introduction to K9 Nose Work® workshop
* 2011 – K9 Nose Work® for the Shelter Environment – Live Demo Workshop

* 2021 Webinars:
~~~ How Animals Learn; How People Teach Them with Terry Ryan
~~~ BAT for Geeks: A Technical Perspective on Behavior Adjustment Training 2.0 with Grisha Stewart
~~~ Instinct and Drive with Kathryn Lord Phd
~~~ Heritability of Behavior Traits with Lore Haug, DVM, MS, DACVB, CABC
~~~ Predation Substitute Training with Simone Mueller
~~~ More Than Good Recommendations: Navigating the Human Side of Training/Consulting with Chris Pachel DVM CABC
* 2017 – Terry Ryan – Gamification Dog Trainer Workshop
* 2016 – Terry Ryan – Coaching People to Train Their Dogs
* 2013-2014 – Karen Pryor Academy Dog Trainer Professional Program with Terry Ryan
* 2014 – Nicole Wakida – Canine Cross Fit Workshop
* 2013 – Andrea Dexter – Problem Solving Weaves Agility Workshop
* 2013 – Nancy Gyes – Agility Contact Training Workshop
* 2013 – Grisha Stewart – Behavior Adjustment Training Seminars
* 2009, 2010, 2011 – Association of Professional Dog Trainers Annual Conferences
* 2011 – Trish King – Use of Stuffed Dogs in Evaluations, Consultations & Training
* 2011 – Grisha Stewart – BAT Demo: Behavior Adjustment Training in Practice
* 2011 – Gail Fisher – Dogs at Play: Recognizing, Evaluating & Understanding Styles of Play Behavior webinar
* 2011 – Terry Ryan – Canine Body Language, Aggression and Reactivity seminars
* 2011 – Sue Ailsby – Training Levels Workshop
* 2011 – Terry Ryan – Problem Solving workshop for pet dogs
* November 2010 – Terry Ryan – Poultry In Motion (chicken workshop for dog trainers)
* October 2010 – Pia Silvani – Feisty Fidos Live Demo Workshop
* 2010-2011 – Professional apprenticeship with Marie-Gabrielle Selarque CPDT of Pro-Dog Hawaii
* 2010-2011 – Ethology & Canine Behavior Lecture Series Webinar
* 2010 – Debby McMullen – Guided Study Managing Multi-Dog Households
* 2009 – Barbara Handelman – Understanding Canine Behavior
* 2009 – Sue Sternberg – Canine Body Language, Temperament Assessment, & Behavior Analysis
* 2009 – Trish King – Canine Body Language and Aggression
* 2009 – Brenda Aloff – Socialization and Reinforcement in Dog Training
* 2008 – Pooch 101 by Project POOCH – A workshop on developing a program in corrections for youth offenders and shelter dogs