About Us and Our Dog Training

Mini Paws School Building

Paws-itively Obedient, owned and operated by Valli Rovenolt, is located on Route 44 between McEwensville and Turbotville, PA. Built in 2004, the 4800 sq. ft. facility is heated and fully matted allowing classes to be held year round. An additional training building was built in 2011 to offer more classes and new programs. Seminars and free community education days are offered throughout the year. Both buildings can be rented; please contact us for rates and more information.

With commitment to the training process you can build a bond and working relationship based on kindness, consistency, compassion and trust. Your pet will learn to respect you as a fair leader and will become a happy and willing companion, eager to learn for a lifetime.

10316 State Route 44
Watsontown, PA 17777
Phone (570) 649-6385

Valli and her dogs

Valli Rovenolt

Paws-itively Obedient Dog Training School

I discovered the pure and unconditional love of dogs when I was quite young and have been devoted to the care of these wonderful companions all my life.  My goal and hope is to try to return that love in helping others to build lasting and loving relationships with their dogs.

My true passion for training and showing dogs started about 40 years ago.  I began training with my pet mixed breed but soon became addicted to the love of dog sports and began my “show dog” career.

In addition to training and showing dogs, I worked as a veterinary technician for several years.  I also completed the NY School of Dog Grooming courses and was the owner of a professional grooming business for over 15 years. 

I created Paws-itively Obedient Dog Training School to fulfill a personal dream of trying to help every dog I meet.  We at Paws-itively have been successfully helping people and their dogs both locally in our community and state wide for over 20 years. 

We are highly recommended by veterinarians.  A great dog trainer needs the ability to communicate effectively with dogs.  However having an ability to connect with people and dogs completes a very successful team.  I am blessed to have that gift and skills.

Accomplishments with which my dogs have blessed me:

  • Bred and over handled 15 Champions with wins at the National and Regional Level and group placements in the United States and Canada
  • Completed multiple Obedience and Rally titles through Utility and Rally Excellent earning top scores and placements.
  • Earned AKC PACH (Preferred Agility Championship and Master Level titles on multiple dogs.
  • Our Giant Schnauzers have rated #1 and in the top 5 of their breed in Agility, Obedience, Rally, Tracking and Scent Work.
  • Winner of Top Ten Obedience Event at National Specialty and HIT GSCA National Obedience.
  • Second Giant and Third Giant to earn NW1, NW1 AND NW2 with 3 Pronounced awards.
  • Invited to AKC Agility Invitationals with multiple Giant Schnauzers.
  • Invited to AKC 2020 National Agility Championship.

Member of:

  • National Association of Canine Scent Work (NACSW)
  • Giant Schnauzer Club of America

Qualified as:

  • Certified Nose Work Instructor (CNWI)
  • AKC Scent Work Judge
  • AKC Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Evaluator
  • AKC Fit Dog Instructor

Additional Education:

  • Complete 24 continuing education credits every 2 years to maintain certification as K9 Nose Work Instructor.
  • Attend camps, seminars, workshops, webinars, study & research multitudes of books to update my training, skills & programs to the ongoing positive changes occurring all the time in the professional dog training world.

Our Dog Training Team

Rick Rovenolt

Dog Trainer


Even as a child, I can’t remember a day where I didn’t have a dog at my side.  What these wonderful beings give to us is far greater than what they get in return.

To me dogs are my children and I think most of our students consider their dogs as family as well.  That’s why they are committed to sharing activities and learning experiences with their dogs.

I’ve been involved with training and showing dogs in multiple performance venues for over 30 years.  In the past few years I have been training, competing and teaching K9 Nose Work.  K9 Nose Work is like detection dog work, however it’s not sourcing drugs or bombs, it’s just a fun and exciting activity for your dog.  This is a great way for dogs to gain confidence, become less environmentally sensitive and if your dog excels you might even want to compete in Nose Work Trials.


  • Certified Nose Work Instructor (CNWI)
  • K9 Nose Work titles, NW#, L1C, L2I, NW3E, NW3I, NW3V
  • Volunteer Coordinator at NACSW Trails
  • Hosted K9 Nose Work Seminars by Leah Ganglehoff Donna Hrenick, Jacy Kelly, Sergio Rojas.
  • 2020 completed 17 Educational Webinars.
  • Obtained Master Agility Title
  • Trained multiple dogs to Obedience and Utility titles
  • Trained fieldwork (hunting) with Troy (Golden Retriever) certificate excellent
  • Completed and achieved WCX (Working Certificate Excellent) and Junior Hunter Title

About 30 years ago, I began training a dog for competition when I obtained a beautiful flat-coated retriever whose name was “Charry”.

We began our partnership by earning a Utility Dog title, Junior Hunter, Working Certificate and a Tracking title. All of this was before agility was an AKC venue but she did earn many prizes with demos at county fairs. Since that time, I have shown five flat-coats to breed championships, some of my own line, and in 1999, my kennel produced the #1 flat-coat in America. That same year, I competed with a litter mate to the distinction of the #1 flat-coat in Agility in America. My enthusiasm for dog training continues as I train and show my present three flat-coated retrievers. Recently, I was able to achieve a MACH with two of my dogs.

Shortly after I began training my dogs in competition, I was asked to teach classes for a dog training club and in addition my sister asked me to join her in teaching classes. Since then, I have helped train many dogs who have obtained titles in:

  • Field – Junior Hunter, Working Certificate, Working Certificate Excellent
  • Tracking Dog
  • Utility Dog
  • Rally Excellent
  • Master Agility Champion, Fast Excellent

My “other life” has consisted in obtaining an associate degree in Horticulture form the Williamsport Area Community College followed by many years in floral design and I am now acting as Visual Coordinator in retail.

Member of:

  • Williamsport Dog Training Club Flat Coated Retriever Society of America
  • Mid-Atlantic Flat Coated Retriever Club

Lauren Weidner

Dog Trainer

Duska Rishel

Dog Trainer

Duska and JR

I returned to Pennsylvania from Georgia, in the spring of 1994 after a memorable career of training, breeding, and marketing Arabian horses. The same year I met my husband, John. In 2001, we relocated from Mifflinburg, to a lovely 100 acre farm, outside of Watsontown.

In December of 2004, Harley, a seven month old Jack Russell Terrier, arrived as a Christmas present from my husband. He was a bundle of energy, which I was prepared for, because of having a Jack Russell Terrier in the past. Living on an active, working dairy farm can have its safety challenges so John insisted we enroll in reliable training classes for his well being and peace of mind for us. This was my introduction to Pawsitively Dog Obedient.

I couldn’t wait until January when Harley and I attended our first Puppy Kindergarten, at Pawsitively. After that, Canine Good Citizenship and eventually Beginner Agility. I was hooked! Little did I realize how addicted I would become. My love is the Agility Ring. Trusted relationships formed with Valli, Rick, Lauren has had a huge impact on my current success. Harley and I worked hard as a team for many years overcoming injury setbacks, including loss of an eye in June of 2013. To return to the agility ring was our goal. In July, Valli evaluated his abilities and felt the desire and confidence level was strong enough to return. We worked hard and made adjustments to some handling Agility that June. We went on to enjoy a different level of fun, trust and bonding doing Nosework. Currently with our new rescue ,JR, its off to whole new level of challenges and adventure starting with agility.

Over the years, I have been assisting Valli and Lauren with various classes and events at Pawsitively, including Puppy Kindergarten, Canine Good Citizens and young, upcoming, Agility students. How fulfilling it is to witness enthusiastic teams interacting and improving their skills to achieve optimal, rewarding behaviors through kind positive encouragement. It is a privilege to work with such knowledgeable professionals like Valli and Lauren who are respected individuals in their fields.

From a young age, I have always had a special love for animals.  I grew up training and showing Quarter Horses.  After graduating High School, I started working at a Standardbred Breeding farm in Pennsylvania.  That occupation moved me to New Jersey where I worked on one of the most prestigious Standardbred Breeding farms in the country.  I worked for years breeding horses and raising them until they were ready to go to sale or to training.  In 1994 I had my first(and only) ‘human’ child and left my horse career behind.  I moved back to Pennsylvania to raise my child.  I shifted my love of horses to rescuing animals and raising my own menagerie of animals.  I have been actively involved in rescuing and rehabbing dogs for over 25 years.  I worked with an Animal Behaviorist for over 3 years and then started to gain an interest in agility and obedience.  I started training at  Paws-itively Obedient in 2009.  In 2016 I trained with Kyra Sundance and became a Certified Trick Dog Instructor (CDTI).  I am also an AKC Canine Good Citizen Evaluator.

Over the past five years, I have been teaching classes at Paws-itively Obedient.  It is humbling to be able to work alongside Valli as well as the other talented instructors.   I love to watch my students form a special bond with their dog(s) and become confident dog owners.

I work full time as an International Customer and Sales Support Person.  In my spare time, I enjoy competing in agility and  trick training my dogs.  I work actively in dog rescue and currently am President of a local foster based dog rescue. 

I currently have 5 Rescue dogs, 3 cats and 1 horse.  I have a huge soft spot for bully breed dogs that have special training needs but I have owned all different breeds/mixes over the years. 

Kristi Cirelli

Dog Trainer

Kristi and dogs