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Meet The Trainers









Amanda Murcutt 

Pawsitively Great Pets

B.AnSci (Melb Uni), National Dog Trainers Federation (NDTF) accredited behaviourist

Cert IV in Training and Assessment


Amanda has been involved with the animal industry for over 15 years.

Following her graduation from her Bachelor of Animal Science and Management, Amanda continued to develop her interest in training and behavior through the NDTF trainer’s course.

For over 6 years, Amanda has developed her skills and knowledge as a behavioural trainer through her work as Animal Behaviour and Training Coordinator with RSPCA Victoria. It was through this role that Amanda worked closely with private clients working through common behavioural issues, coordinating group classes as well as assessing and rehabilitating shelter animals for their suitability for adoption.

Amanda spent the following years working with Melbourne's veterinary behaviour referral service "Good Pet Behaviour" working alongside some of the leading veterinary behaviourists of Australia.  It was through this work that Amanda continued to develop her interest and skill in complex behavioural issues. 

Pawsitively Great Pets was founded in 2016 and since then has joined forces with Southern Cross Animal Stars to form K9 Connect.

Amanda utilises practical, reward based training techniques to help owners learn the skills to better communicate with their family pets. Amanda is passionate about helping owners better understand their pets and how they can use management and training to help strengthen the human-animal bond.

In her spare time, Amanda enjoys training her 5 dogs in competitive dog events such as obedience, agility and herding.  

Julija Kinghorn

Southern Cross Animal Stars

BSc (hons) (Melb Uni), National Dog Trainers Federation (NDTF) accredited behaviourist

Cert IV in Training and Assessment


Julija has been training dogs at a professional level for the past 20 years.

Always being interested in animal behaviour, her BSc Honours project involved studying the diving behaviour of Little Penguins at Phillip Island.  She completed the Dog Trainer Certification Course through National Dog Trainers Federation the same year.

Julija instructed at a leading dog training company for four years before starting her own business, Southern Cross Animal Stars.  Starting at running classes only 2 days a week, we quickly grew to expanding to 6 days a week, and now running K9 Connect.  Being mother of two (13 year old daughter and 7 year old son) it has been fun to see how dog training techniques can be used to ‘train’ children.

Always having a strong interest for training tricks and ‘all things different’ when it comes to dogs, Julija developed her ever popular Beginners Tricks and Advanced Tricks training programs.  She also developed and instructed fun and interactive Puppy Classes and all levels of obedience training for the everyday pet dog.

In addition to classes, she also does behaviour consults for owners of dogs with issues ranging from fears and anxieties, over-reactivities and dog-to-dog socialisation problems.  As training benefits not only the dog, but also the owner/dog bond, she has seen how important is to make training fun, enjoyable and surprisingly easy.

Julija has also built Southern Cross Animal Stars into an animal agency, providing animal wrangling services for TV, film and commercial photoshoots.  She has 15 years experience of having animals on-set and doing live performances.  Join her for a rare insight into this special area of training and learn some important tricks of the trade.

As well as having fun with tricks, she loves teaching pre-performance skills for competitive agility.  Also competing with her own dogs in agility, she is a registered ANKC agility judge.

Our Casual Trainers:


Jan Edwards

National Dog Trainers Federation (NDTF) 

Jan has completed her Cert III in Behaviour and Training (NDTF) in 2010 and has been working with dogs for over 12 years.    Prior to working at the RSPCA (Vic), Jan spent 6 years teaching group classes in obedience and general training.  She is passionate about animal welfare and has extensive experience working with animal shelters, helping to maintain the well-being of the dogs while rehabilitating them to a successful adoption. 

From this, Jan's specialties lie in treating puppy farm dog cases, fear and anxiety and separation anxiety to name a few!  Over the last few years she has accidentally found herself taming and rehoming stray cats as they keep appearing at her house. 

Jan is also a member of the industry associations PPG Australia and APDT Australia. She is dedicated to ongoing learning through conferences, seminars and courses. 

We are really excited to have Jan on our team and helping us out with our private consultations, workshops and seminars. 

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