Melissa Sigala, CPDT-KA

Melissa has always known that she wanted to work with animals. In kindergarten, when asked the question, “What would you like to be when you grow up?” Melissa would always answer, “ A veterinarian!” Although Melissa has changed her career goal, she has not lost sight of why she wanted to be a veterinarian in the first place: to help animals in any way she possibly could.

In 2010, Melissa began her college career at UC Santa Cruz where she double majored in Psychology and Anthropology. In 2012, Melissa became a volunteer at the Marine Mammal Physiology Project, which is a volunteer program offered by UC Santa Cruz allowing students to work with and train marine mammals. Melissa began as a husbandry volunteer at the project where she learned what it takes to take care of large exotic mammals. After a year, Melissa was given the opportunity to attend an animal training lecture series offered by the Marine Mammal Physiology Project. The ten-week course covered the basics of positive reinforcement training methods and hands-on experience allowed Melissa to grow as a trainer. Melissa volunteered at the project for three years and was an assistant marine mammal trainer for two years. Through animal training, Melissa found her new passion, and a new exciting way to help animals live better and less stress-filled lives.

In 2015, after leaving Santa Cruz to move back to Los Angeles, Melissa pursued a career in dog training. She began working for a dog-training company, where she taught basic obedience classes, private training, as well as boarding and training. In order to gain more training experience, Melissa recently finished an internship at the Aquarium of the Pacific working with sea lions, seals and sea otters.

Melissa is excited and proud to be a part of the spcaLA team.