Alex Andes & Her Dogs

About Us

Peach on a Leash® is a full-service dog training company based in Alpharetta, Georgia and serving Metro Atlanta and its northern suburbs, from Midtown to Cumming.

Utilizing the most modern, science-based training techniques, head trainer and pet behavior expert Alex Sessa, CPDT-KA, CDBC and her team of certified, highly experienced trainers will deliver the results you’re looking for.

We provide your dog with a positive and effective learning experience that provides quick results and dramatically improves behavior while strengthening your bond with your dog.

Regardless of your dog’s breed or behavior issues, you’ll be amazed at how quickly your dog responds to our training.

Meet Our Team

Owner & Head Trainer: Alex Sessa

Peach on a Leash owner and head trainer, Alex Sessa, (formerly Andes) CPDT-KA, CDBC, VSPDT is a pet behavior expert who has been training dogs and studying dog behavior for nearly a decade.

Alex is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers, a certification that requires hundreds of logged training hours and passing a comprehensive exam. She is also one of only five trainers in the state of Georgia to receive full certification as a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant through the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. This high-level certification requires a rigorous application process that’s assessed by a panel of experts in dog training and behavior, and you must demonstrate the knowledge and ability to handle complex behavior cases in order to be certified.

Additionally, she has attained the prestigious Victoria Stilwell Positively Dog Trainer (VSPDT) certification, and has successfully completed Michael Shikashio’s Aggression in Dogs Master Course.

She attended the University of Georgia, where she began honing her training skills while helping improve the behavior of local shelter dogs to reduce euthanasia rates. She graduated with honors in 2012 and worked as both a pet adoption counselor and an assistant dog trainer before being offered a job with celebrity dog trainer Victoria Stilwell of Animal Planet’s “It’s Me or the Dog.”

Alex traveled the world with Victoria and had the opportunity to learn from her in all facets of training and behavior for five years before deciding to pursue her dream of founding Peach on a Leash. Their work together allowed Alex the opportunity to work hands-on with both pet dogs and working dogs, including police dogs and accelerant detection dogs.

As the founder and owner of Peach on a Leash, Alex manages our training program as well as our team of six exceptional, highly qualified training and behavior experts. She leads the training for our VIP Puppy Development program, which has provided professional training for celebrities, athletes, CEOs, and other high-profile clientele. She has been featured on HLN, WSB-TV, 11Alive, and various print publications.

Alex also serves as both a faculty member and a mentor for students in the Victoria Stilwell Dog Training Academy, as well as consulting for other training companies and non-profit organizations needing guidance with their dog training programs.

Alex is proud to be active in the animal rescue community. She works with Furkids Animal Rescue, Atlanta Boxer Rescue, Angels Among Us Pet Rescue, Orphan Annie Pet Rescue, Canine Cellmates, and others.

These experiences have helped her to become one of the most studied, well-rounded trainers in the area, and her results-oriented training utilizes effective and humane techniques that are backed by the latest modern behavioral science.

She shares her home with her husband Will, who is a police K-9 officer, and their beloved dogs.

 

Client Care Manager: Abby Freeman

Abby is our exceptional Client Care Manager, and may be the first person you speak with before beginning training with us. 

For the last six years, Abby has worked in various industries in the pet world, from running pet supply stores to doggie daycare. Working in these facets has made her passionate about helping pet owners find the right solutions for their pets.

Abby graduated magna cum laude from the University of North Georgia in 2016 where she earned her Bachelor of the Arts in Business majoring in Marketing. In 2019, she graduated with distinction from the prestigious Victoria Stilwell Academy for Dog Training & Behavior. 

At home, Abby is a mom to a spunky human toddler, a high-energy German Shorthaired Pointer, and various other farm animals.

 

Certified Trainer: Amelia Cosmas

Certified Trainer Amelia Cosmas, CPDT-KA is a passionate dog trainer and puppy expert. Amelia is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers, a certification that requires hundreds of logged training hours and passing a comprehensive exam. After Graduating With Distinction from the prestigious Victoria Stilwell Academy for Dog Training, Amelia was hired by her Academy mentor as a trainer. While working in the nursery school at her mentor’s facility, Amelia trained countless 8-16 week old puppies, taught group classes and trained privately in client’s homes. 

She is committed to results-oriented, science-based, and fun training. Amelia continually furthers her education and experiences in the dog training world by attending conferences and seminars as well as belonging to several professional organizations.

As a Certified Volunteer at Canine Assistants in Milton, Amelia takes great pride in helping dogs to become amazing service animals who go on to improve the lives of their recipients in immeasurable ways. Amelia is very active in this organization, currently fostering and teaching three incredible future service dogs.

She shares her home with her wonderful husband and their two awesome dogs, Rhett, a Mixed Breed and Ronan, a Golden Retriever.

Certified Trainer: Jackie Audette

Jackie graduated from Rutgers University, where she received her Bachelor’s in Animal Science with a minor in Companion Animal Science. While attending college, she spent her free time teaching group and private lessons at a local pet store.

After graduating, she worked as a trainer at North Shore Animal League, the largest no-kill animal shelter in the United States, where she specialized in working with hard-to-handle dogs and cats.

Jackie then participated in a three-year apprenticeship program to become a certified Guide Dog Mobility Instructor where she has trained and placed countless service dogs for those with visual impairments.  Additionally, she has worked with veterans and first responders by training and providing mobility and PTSD dogs to those in need. Realizing that she had a strong skillset working with service dogs, Jackie progressed to become the Apprentice Program Manager, where she would mentor new trainers to become certified service dog instructors.

Jackie believes in maximizing positive reinforcement training techniques and loves to attend conferences to stay up-to-date on the latest trends and studies.  She believes that training should be fun for not only the dog, but the whole family as well.

Jackie is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers, a certification that requires hundreds of logged training hours and passing a comprehensive exam.

 

Certified Trainer: Jenny Gough

Jenny attended North Carolina State University where she duel majored and earned degrees in Zoology B.S. and Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology B.S. She spent time off and summers volunteering at a local dog rescue, fostering groups of puppies, and building her skills working with fearful and anxious dogs.
Fearful and aggressive reactions to people and other dogs with her oldest dog, Porter the Lab/Hound mix,  led Jenny to pursue training as a career. She continued to apply her growing training knowledge in puppy manners, household obedience, and behavior modification for the next four years as a professional dog trainer in North Carolina. After completing hundreds of logged training hours, Jenny is scheduled to complete her certification as a Certified Professional Dog Trainer during the next offered testing date in September 2020.
Jenny has a particular love in training rambunctious, high energy, and teenage dogs. In the last year, she has gotten many opportunities to apply her “ terrible teen” knowledge while raising her youngest pups, Fletcher the English Shepherd and Crux the Blue Heeler mix. In her free time, Jenny works with her pups on hiking and camping skills, paddle boarding, agility, and canine conditioning and fitness. 

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Training Manager: Julia Skrotzki

Julia is a CPDT-KA, VSA-CDT trainer as well as our Training Manager. Having worked closely with owner Alex Sessa for over 3 years, she shares a commitment for achieving excellent results using compassionate training methods supported by the most up-to-date behavioral science.

A Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers, Julia is also a graduate with distinction from the Victoria Stilwell Academy for Dog Training and Behavior. These achievements come after logging hundreds of training hours and passing comprehensive exams. She is dedicated to continual studies and seminars designed to progressively enhance her training methods.

Julia uses years of experience to guide owners through behavior modification techniques. This is her passion – whether it is creating a fun approach for getting families started with a new puppy, or positive ways for owners to overcome difficult cases like dog aggression or leash reactivity.

In addition to her training work with our pet dog clients, Julia is also our lead trainer for animal acting. She has worked on location for numerous brand name promotions. She works with dogs one-on-one to prepare for specific roles and also leads “tricks” and “animal acting” group classes.

Originally from a small town in Germany, for more than 10 years Julia has called the north Atlanta suburb of Milton home. She lives with her 3 dogs, husband and two children. Julia is also an active volunteer and foster mom at the Atlanta Humane Society.

Service Dog Training Director: Hallie Wells

Hallie Wells joined our team with an extensive background in assistance dog training and pet dog behavior. For over four years, Hallie was the puppy program manager for a guide dog and service dog school that placed over 100 dogs a year with clients that were visually impaired, blind, or veterans needing an assistance dogs. Many of the dogs went on to careers to autism support dogs, accelerant detection dogs, and service dogs for civilians.

In addition to training our clients’ pet dogs, she is also the lead trainer for our service dog training program.

Hallie attended the University of Georgia, where she worked as a veterinary assistant and animal caretaker at a dog daycare and boarding facility. While in college, she fostered dogs with Helping Paws rescue, with a focus on the dogs that had behavioral issues, including aggression and resource guarding. Working with her foster dogs, Hallie began to understand that high-value reinforcement was the most effective way to provide clear communication and guidelines to any dog, especially those with undesirable behaviors.

After graduation, Hallie focused on a career in the assistance dog industry. She started puppy raising a Labrador cross rescue in 2011, which had a tremendous effect on her life and career path. That impact influenced her to use her training and behavior background as a positive impact for the assistance dog industry. She effectively started a result-oriented, positive reinforcement-based training protocol for the 400+ puppies trained yearly at the organization. Hallie has honed her skills on early neonatal socialization, public socialization, service dog training, and client-dog relationships and is excited to share her understanding and knowledge with Peach on a Leash Clients.

Hallie is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers, a certification that requires hundreds of logged training hours and passing a comprehensive exam.

Hallie shares her home with Lola Mae, a black and white mix dog and Arthur Ziv, a long haired orange tabby cat. Lola and Arthur are quite the pair; providing appropriate cat exposure and teaching puppies correct interaction with other animals to all the animals that are welcomed into Hallie’s home!

 

Certified Trainer: Mandy Grace

Mandy has transformed her lifelong obsession with dogs, psychology, and the science of learning into a training career which began in her home state of North Carolina. After adopting a dog who had above average behavioral requirements and catching the training bug, she took the plunge to become a professional in 2013, and worked at the largest positive reinforcement training company in Raleigh, NC. Over the years, Mandy fulfilled roles as a Board & Train Trainer and a Lead Trainer in the Doggie Dayschool program, then a Class Instructor and the Office Manager for the company.

Mandy earned her CPDT-KA in 2017 after logging many hundred hours of hands-on instruction and passing a comprehensive exam. Over the years, and through her work with rescue, Mandy adopted two more dogs who also required behavior modification. Through these dogs and her clients, she developed not only an interest in helping families establish deep bonds with their pets through building basic training skills, but also helping to overcome behavior issues and find the joy in their dog’s individuality. She has a passion for trick training and has also used it as a therapeutic tool in helping dogs overcome fear and anxieties.

In addition to building on experience, Mandy believes strongly in lifelong learning as a vital part of providing excellent training service as a professional. She enjoys continually pursuing new learning opportunities, attending conferences, and keeping up with the latest research. Currently, she is pursuing two additional independent credentials. The first is a  Certified Trick Dog Instructor credential, which supplements the classes she has taught in recent years. She is also working to become a Certified Control Unleashed Instructor, which will hone her skills in areas ranging from facilitating bonds between puppies and their families, to helping family dogs build focus, to guiding dogs with anxieties to find peace.

Mandy’s family consists of her husband, Steven, and their three rescue mixed breed dogs, Brugge, Ozzie, and Holder.

 

Certified Trainer: Taylor Reardon

Taylor graduated from Atlanta Dog Trainer’s Certified Training Academy. There, she learned to use effective methods of positive, science-based dog training in order to address aggression and behavior management. 

During her time in the Academy, she also studied puppy manners and dog obedience. She completed the most advanced course to train dogs with phobic and fear-based behaviors as well as separation anxiety. She then worked as a professional dog trainer for a local training company before coming on board with Peach on a Leash.

She has qualified as a Certified Professional Dog Trainer, a certification that requires hundreds of logged training hours and passing a comprehensive exam, and will complete the certification process as soon as COVID restrictions are lifted.

She volunteers weekly as a dog trainer for Patient Paws Service Dogs Inc., a non-profit organization in Milton, Georgia.

Taylor shares her home with her young German Shepherd, Dominic, who displays talent in Dog Agility. 

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Our Philosophy

Alex and her team are passionate about staying up-to-date on the latest modern behavioral science. Their methods are rooted in positive reinforcement, providing effective and long-lasting results without causing your dog any fear or pain. Just like those in the medical community take a pledge to “do no harm,” we make the same promise to our clients and their dogs. We consistently provide the fastest, most effective results possible, and without sacrificing ethics in the process.

We do not utilize prong, choke, or remote collars in training. We guide dogs into making appropriate choices and set clear and consistent boundaries, providing you with the results you’re looking for without frightening your dog in the process.

You don’t need harsh training equipment to achieve the results you’re looking for – you just need someone with the skills and experience it takes to train using the most modern methods!

Want more information on our training methods? Read this blog we wrote on the subject.