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Agility Star Academy is owned and operated by Michelle and Derek del Carpio. Michelle and Derek's passion for agility began in 2004 with their Rat Terrier, Katie. Like many other dogs, Katie needed something to do other than sit at home and cause trouble. She needed a JOB! Michelle found an agility school that had two openings, so she convinced Derek to bring their Chihuahua, Tamale along. Tamale was only 5 months old at the time, but they figured Tamale would benefit from some extra training and socialization. Little did they know that Tamale would enjoy agility so much!

When Katie's agility career was cut short in Spring 2005 due to a hereditary condition that made her lose her eye sight, Michelle somehow convinced Derek that he should hand Tamale's leash over to her and they have been inseparable ever since.

Michelle and Tamale earned many top titles together including a Master Agility Championship, Master Gold Agility and Master Silver Jumpers with Weaves titles. Michelle and Tamale have qualified for the AKC Agility Nationals twice and were invited to the AKC Agility Invitational in 2011 and 2012. In 2011, Tamale finished in 13th place out of 129 dogs and in both 2011 and 2012, Tamale finished as the 2nd place Chihuahua.

Michelle follows and teaches Greg Derrett’s system of agility handling and is a student of Susan Garrett’s Say Yes Dog Training school. Michelle believes that the consistency in Greg’s handling system leads to clear and concise communication between dog and handler and success in the agility ring. Michelle and Derek have attended numerous Susan Garrett camps and Greg Derrett workshops as well as attending Power Paws Agility Camp in California. Michelle is a member of The Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT), has taken some Behavior Analysis classes at the local university and recently earned the title of Certified Professional Dog Trainer - Knowledge Assessed (CPDT - KA). Michelle is also an AKC Agility Course Test Evaluator.

Michelle and Derek live in Corinth, Texas with their daughter Merida and their 6 dogs, Tamale, Flour Tortilla, Chimichanga, Chip, Salsa and Pinto Bean.

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