Don Hanson has loved dogs for as long as he can remember, and after a 17year career in the medical device industry, Don and his wife joined the ranks of pet care professionals when they purchased the Green Acres Kennel Shop
in Bangor, Maine in 1995. Since then, Don, his wife Paula, and their team of employees have been offering pet-friendly
boarding, daycare, grooming, training classes, behavioral consultations, and the sale of wholesome pet food and quality supplies to pet lovers in the greater Bangor community. ForceFreePets.com is Don’s mechanism for sharing his knowledge, experience, and passion beyond Bangor, Maine.
Don is credentialed by the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC) as an Associate Certified Cat Behavior Consultant (ACCBC) and a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant (CDBC). He is also credentialed as a Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT) by the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers (CCPDT) and as a Bach Foundation Registered Animal Practitioner (BFRAP) by the Bach Foundation.
Don has been very active in the pet community, serving on the Bangor Humane Society Board of Directors from 1996-2011, including five years as president. He was recruited to serve on the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) Education Committee in 1998. This group developed the first certification exam for professional dog trainers in 2001. He was elected to serve on the APDT Board of Trustees for nine years (2002-2007, & 2011-2013) and served three years as the Board Chair (2007, 2011, & 2012). In October of 2014, Don was selected as the APDT Dr. Ian Dunbar Member of the Year.
In early 2015 Don discovered The Pet Professionals Guild (PPG), an association committed to pain-free, force-free, and fear-free pet care. The PPG philosophy aligned perfectly with what Don had been calling “pet-friendly” pet care. Since neither the APDT nor any other pet care professional association was as forward-thinking and ethically-sound as the PPG, Don resigned from his APDT membership and became a member of the PPG. Don believes so strongly in PPG’s mission that all members of his staff at Green Acres are enrolled as members as soon as they have completed their staff training. Don currently serves on the PPG Steering Committee and as the Co-Chair of the PPG Advocacy Committee and Shock-Free Coalition.
Committed to continuing education, Don attends a variety of conferences, seminars, and webinars every year < click to see a list
>. He also presents workshops on pet behavior, dog training, pet nutrition, and Bach Flower Remedies in Canada, the Caribbean, Japan, and throughout the US < click to see a list
Since becoming the owner of Green Acres Kennel Shop, Don has emphasized that providing validated and useful information to his clients and the public was a crucial part of Green Acres’ mission. Over the years, he has worked to implement that part of the mission through Green Acres’ website, in-house seminars, and training classes, a column in Downeast Dog News
, a radio show and podcast (The Woof Meow Show
) and his blog (Word, Woofs, & Meows
). ForceFreePets.com will now be the mothership to all of those endeavors.