About Lauren Wendt & Momentum K9

Dedicated to the Details and Committed to the Process

At Momentum K9 we understand that it’s the small details that can make the greatest impact and that commitment to the process is what gets you to your goal: from selecting the right dogs for programs, to developing handlers to work effectively with their K9, and building confident, resilient, high-drive dogs with a strong work ethic, and all the training in between — Momentum K9 is about helping you build strong bonds and skills to create successful human-dog teams.

With a lifelong dedication to dogs and natural resource conservation, Lauren merged these passions in 2016, forging a path that intertwines expertise in canine handling and training with a background in biology and natural resource law enforcement. Along the way, Lauren has sought to learn and incorporate skills, understanding, and techniques from an extensive variety of training methodologies, programs, and philosophies. Lauren’s journey has equipped her with diverse and distinctive skill sets, from gun dogs to agility to disaster search and rescue to conservation and more.

With these skill sets and experience, Momentum K9 offers training, coaching, and consulting to clients in various facets of the working and sporting dog world. Lauren recognizes the individuality of every K9, owner/handler, and program, approaching each with the understanding that uniquely tailored solutions and innovation are imperative to success.

So whether you are struggling with your dog, want to up your game as a handler, are looking for your next K9 partner or need an experienced perspective for troubleshooting you’ve come to the right place and we are glad you are here.

Photo Credit: Isabelle Groc

Experienced working & Sporting dog trainer

About Lauren Wendt

Lauren spent 11 years as a Wildlife Police Officer, thriving on the complexities of conservation and law enforcement challenges, viewing each as a unique puzzle (not so different from training dogs and coaching people). In 2016 she started the process of establishing a K9 program within Washington Fish and Wildlife Police where she was a Detective focused on wildlife trafficking crimes. She spent almost 3 years as a K9 handler before taking the opportunity to train and work with conservation dogs full time. Lauren spent over 4 years with Working Dogs for Conservation where she was a handler and trainer, then worked her way to being the training lead on law enforcement projects. Lauren had the amazing opportunity to work with programs domestically and across the globe, helping them enhance their conservation and anti-poaching K9 efforts.

But long before that Lauren was pulled into the world of dogs through retrievers. As an avid waterfowl hunter she quickly got herself a labrador which began a 20+ year journey through dog training and handling in various disciplines with various breeds.

Lauren currently shares her home and life with 2 working labradors, Benny and Finn, and Goose, a golden retriever Dutch shepherd mix who didn’t quite make the cut as a working dog (but still assists in the training of new handlers), in addition to an ever-evolving rotation of dogs she is raising or training for various projects, plus her extremely supportive wife Cate.

To see more details about Lauren’s professional careers, achievements and certifications please head over to her LinkedIn profile.

Our dogs

Momentum K9s

In addition to training other working and sporting dogs Momentum K9 has 3 of our own, meet them below!

Benny

Benny, a black Labrador, was Washington Fish and Wildlife Police’s first single purpose detection K9, handled by (then Detective) Lauren.

Lauren found Benny as he was looking for a new home at 16 months old (way too much energy and drive for the original owners). Benny passed the evaluation with flying colors and Lauren started training him for detection. As a police K9, Benny was trained to detect elephant ivory, rhino horn, shark fin, bear gallbladder and firearms. Benny and Lauren worked in and around the Ports of Seattle and Tacoma searching for illegal wildlife products for almost 3 years.

Benny has a statue at the Woodland Park Zoo’s anti-poaching exhibit and is featured in the book, Conservation Canines. Since then, Benny has additionally been trained to detect many other conservation related targets (scat, plants, and live animals) and traveled extensively for projects assisting various NGO’s, government agencies, and academic institutions.

Finn

Finn, a chocolate Labrador, has been with Lauren since the pup was 8 weeks old.

Originally intended to be a bird dog, life took an interesting path that led them to disaster search and rescue when Finn was 6 months old. Finn (and Lauren) became certified in human remains detection. When Lauren left her full-time law enforcement career to focus on conservation detection, Finn changed careers as well.

Since then, Finn has been trained on about 12 different conservation related targets (scat, plants, and live animals) and traveled extensively for projects assisting various NGO’s, government agencies, and academic institutions. Finn is also very accomplished in agility and tricks.

Goose

Goose, a Dutch shepherd/golden retriever mix, was originally slated for a documentary on raising a rescue puppy for an eventual role on an anti-poaching K9 team. At 10 weeks old Lauren started the training in March of 2020… lock downs and the logistics of a pandemic ultimately scrapped the documentary and project.

However, her training never stopped and Goose developed incredible tracking skills, along with basic detection skills. Goose is an extremely social dog who loves everything and everyone and thinks life is just one big game (exactly how we want it!).

While she ultimately wasn’t a fit for any of the teams available by the time her training was complete (and now is a bit too old), Goose found a role with Momentum K9 giving new handlers an opportunity to learn and develop their skills on a non-deployment dog.

Train with Momentum K9

Working Dog Evaluations

Selecting the right working or sporting dog is critical to your success. Drive, temperament, stability and love for the work are a must.

Let Momentum K9 help you with a proper evaluation, whether puppy, adolescent or adult!

Working Dog &
Sporting Dog Foundations

A well laid foundation is crucial for a high performing and reliable working or sporting dog. Creating a motivated K9, generalizing behaviors and tasks in all environments, with clear communication when it counts most, it all starts with the foundations. And there is no better time than to start with your puppy!

Law Enforcement &
Conservation Dog Training

Specializing in detection and tracking/trailing, the small details matter when it comes to a well trained and highly functioning K9. From training the basics to problem solving, let Momentum K9 help you make sure you have the highest performing K9 possible on the street or in the woods.

Program Consultations

Whether you are just starting a K9 program or manage an existing program, it is critical to have all the right pieces in all the right places.

With the experience of doing both, let Momentum K9 help ensure you run a top notch K9 program.