GET TO KNOW THE PACK

THE FOUNDING OF MASON DIXON K9

Since 2003, Ryan and Sandy Bulson (Mason Dixon K9) have been helping families and various organizations to rescue, re-home, track, and train dogs. Over the course of their 15 + years of tireless dedication, they have, and continue to, foster and re-home hundreds of dogs (200+ to-date), which includes litters of puppies, seniors, medically challenged dogs, and dogs with severe behavioral issues. In addition to running a Mason Dixon K9, Ryan and Sandy continue to make time assisting several rescue organizations, including holding key positions on the board and within the Mid-Atlantic German Shepherd Rescue (MAGSR) - a top 5 German Shepherd Rescue facility in the US. Their hard work, dedication, and fortitude have earned them utmost respect and many accolades within the K9 community, including the moniker, ‘The K9-Power Couple’. 

In early 2021, Ryan and Sandy Bulson decided to turn their passion into a reality by opening the doors of Mason Dixon K9, a unique dog training facility located on their 50+ acre farm in Carroll County, Maryland. Serving various clients, and multiple rescue organizations up and down the East Coast, Mason Dixon K9 uses balanced training methods that are focused on the nucleus of dog-to-owner communication and relationship. One of the key elements that sets Mason Dixon K9 apart from other training facilities is during sessions, Mason Dixon K9 trainers distill and tailor complex training methods and techniques, creating a 1:1 balanced training regimen that is specific to each dog’s needs and client training requests. 

This in itself may appear simple and obvious, but most facilities use a ‘cookie-cutter’ approach; meaning they use the same techniques on all dogs. With this unique approach, this ensures a higher level of communication between canine and companion, removing any barriers while delivering a well-behaved canine family member. Before each client/family leaves the Mason Dixon K9 facility with their newly trained companion, Mason Dixon K9 ensures there is an understanding of what your dog has learned during their stay with a comprehensive post-training session with all family members. The support for all graduates doesn’t end when you leave the facility, Mason Dixon K9 is always there to answer questions and address concerns.

Mason Dixon K9 understands that choosing the right trainer can be intimidating (overwhelming), but this philosophy and approach has given the Mason Dixon K9 training program continued growth and numerous success stories, even with the hardest K9 behavioral issues. 

Mason Dixon K9 offers an array of services to all dog breeds ranging from 2-12 week sessions: 

OUR CERTIFICATIONS

MEET THE PACK

RYAN BULSON

HEAD TRAINER & CO-OWNER

Ryan has put in more than 700 hours of studying and hands-on training into obtaining his certifications, and diligently strives to stay current with the latest strategies and additional certifications through continuing education. He has strengthened his experience and reputation by working with Steve Hagey, one of the best dog trappers in the US, of Detect a Pet. In addition, both Ryan and Sandy have worked with Find Toby of Pennsylvania, not only assisting in the growth of the Find Toby network, but also tracking and finding lost pets in PA and neighboring states. 

With Ryan’s laser focus on balancing the right training techniques that are individually tailored to best suit each dog and training requests, he is also focused on ensuring all trainers and staff apply the same precision to every dog for their duration at the Mason Dixon K9 facility.  Aside from executing these critical duties, his hands-on, hard-working philosophy proves to be the perfect approach with each success story, graduate, and staff member at the Mason Dixon K9 facility.

 When his focus isn’t on Mason Dixon K9, he balances his time to serve on the Board of Directors of the Mid-Atlantic German Shepherd Rescue (MAGSR). His service goes beyond the board, but this also warrants many successful adoption stories coming from MAGSR. In his downtime, Ryan loves spending time with his amazing family and enjoys life on the farm.
 

SANDY BULSON

CO-OWNER

Sandy has spent her life helping others and has found exceptional success doing so. The achievements of Mason Dixon K9 are attributed to the dynamic, hard-working and passion of both Ryan and Sandy; while Ryan focuses on the training and exterior of Mason Dixon K9, Sandy is the backbone of this unique facility. The day-to-day operations of Mason Dixon K9 are no small task, but she makes them look incredibly easy while balancing volunteer work with Mid-Atlantic German Shepherd Rescue (MAGSR), and her family (which includes everything on the 50+ acre farm). Her sweet and passionate demeanor are welcoming, and as you get to know her, Sandy’s drive for perfection is a positive force of good to be reckoned with. She prides herself on the accomplishments but is very proud of her family and their achievements.

When Sandy isn’t focused on the daily operations of Mason Dixon K9, she turns her focus to her positions within the Mid-Atlantic German Shepherd Rescue (MAGSR), of intake and vetting.  She plays a critical role within the Intake team (evaluating dogs that enter the rescue), and overseeing the vetting group - ensuring medical protocols and vet visits are in place, in addition to interviewing potential adopters.  Having this background also plays a significant role in the staggering achievements of Mason Dixon K9.  Using these unique skill sets to give a different perspective into the dogs that come to Mason Dixon K9, has proven to be a winning strategy. 
 

SUSAN G.

TRAINER MANAGER/TRAINER

Susan grew up with dogs, and has always had dogs in her life, even while balancing the chaos of a family and various activities.  Passionate about providing a loving and caring environment to dogs who may not have had that in the past, Susan decided to fulfill her dream to help train dogs.  

Her family knows her as kind, gentle, caring, all the while keeping you on task; perfect traits of a trainer.  If Susan isn’t at Mason Dixon K9 pouring herself into the betterment of all the dogs, you can find her with her family and their two GSD (German Shepherds), supporting first responders in some capacity, or hunting down the perfect subject matter for the perfect photograph. 

MICHELLE H.

TRAINER 

What started out as part-time quickly grew into full-time, full-passion for Michelle.  She began her professional career as a teacher, but as soon as she stepped foot onto the 50+ acre farm, that was it, she was in and had to flip from teaching full-time to training full-time.  With a family and three dogs of her own, she’s very familiar with ensuring there is balance, clarity, focus in order to achieve goals; all the elements of a well balanced trainer. 

If Michelle isn’t on the farm improving her techniques, you can find her with her family, dogs included, doing something outdoors or cheering on the Baltimore Ravens. 

ANGIE J.

TRAINER 

Angela grew up with many dogs, and it’s impossible for her to recall a memory without one in it. Fast-forward to 2004, her passion for dogs began to solidify into a profession after entering in her first dog dock-diving competition with her Chocolate Lab, Nestle.  Angela then became a charter member and the first President of the Keystone Dock Dogs Club. Through this club, Angela would not only help handlers strengthen their abilities, but also gain confidence and see her own potential as a professional dog trainer. Angela also participated in several other canine sports and enjoyed training dogs in canine disc, weight pull, and tracking and agility.

During her professional career (outside of dogs), Angela was a middle school physical education teacher as well as the school’s track and field coach. It was this incredible experience that encouraged her to become a Certified Canine Fitness Trainer through the University of Tennessee. This program not only facilitated her gradual transition from child educator to canine trainer, but broadened her understanding and strengthened her abilities of canine behaviors. When Angela is not applying her superior capabilities with the Mason Dixon K9 Family, you can find her enjoying the outdoors or engaging in canine sports.

VIVIANA A.

JUNIOR TRAINER

Viviana knew at an early age she was meant to help animals.  At age 12 she began the rewarding, but arduous task of fostering dogs from a local rescue. From there, her love for animals blossomed into more volunteer work.  Outside of school and MDK9, Viviana enjoys spending time volunteering at the local nature center working with reptiles and amphibians.  When she is home, her full attention is on her dogs, multiple lizards and fish.

MONTY M.

TRAINER 

Monty grew up with dogs and cats and spent a lot of time wandering the acres of his grandparents' farm and quenching his curiosity for animals and farm life. It wasn’t a surprise that he fell in love with all animals, domesticated or otherwise. As years passed, his passion and experience grew, and Monty found himself drawn to German Shepherds.  

As this passion intensified, he and his wife joined Mid-Atlantic German Shepherd Rescue, of which they have been a part of for 20 years and growing. These days, he and his wife share their home with 3 Shepherds.

Monty loves the rewards that come from working with dogs that need some extra time, patience and understanding and spends his time between the Mason Dixon K9 family and MAGSR doing just that. 

KIMBERLY G.

KENNEL TECHNICIAN MANAGER

Kim began her journey with Mason Dixon K9 (MDK9) as a customer with her Fur baby, Ace. Once Kim stepped onto the 50+ acre farm, the draw to become a part of the MDK9 family was an intense dream she was eager to pursue. What Kim once dreamt, quickly became reality and full-time position as a kennel technician she was passionate about, and the Mason Dixon K9 Family welcomed her with open arms. Life for Kim wasn’t always about dogs; she began her professional career in accounting but was eager to leave counting beans to count dogs and has never looked back. Kim explains with pure magic in her eyes, “The magic of the Mason Dixon K9 family really does exist, and there is a compassionate and welcoming environment not only for the dogs, but also the customers, and staff."  

Kim is hoping to one day become a trainer and continue to work with her MDK9 family.  If Kim isn’t at the farm, a rare occasion, you can find her spoiling her fur baby Ace, or baking treats for both humans and those with four-legs.

RAIGEN B.

SENIOR KENNEL TECHNICIAN

Raigen is not a stranger to fast-paced, demanding environments and applies her skillset so she can best serve all the pets at Mason Dixon K9. Using her past experiences to distill the non-verbal cues from the dogs at MDK9, Raigen and her team create just the right environment optimal for unparalleled care. Raigen is an ambitious college student and is using her time at MDK9 to hone in on her skills.  You can find her balancing her passions and love for dogs, working with her human pack, reading books about forensic psychology or watching psychological thrillers or horror movies.

ERIKA W.

SENIOR KENNEL TECHNICIAN/ GROOMING INTERN

Growing up on a farm has given Erika a special appreciation for all animals, especially cows and dogs. It wasn’t a surprise that at a young age Erika knew she was destined to work with animals.  She is a certified veterinary technician and is studying to become a certified dog groomer.  When Mason Dixon K9 had an opening, Erika seized the opportunity and joined the MDK9 Family. 

When she’s not playing with pups on the MDK9 farm, you can find her studying or doing farm chores taking care of her fur babies. 

MOLLY C.

SENIOR KENNEL TECHNICIAN

As a native Marylander, Molly’s early life has been filled with all things related to farms, farm animals (cows, chickens, dogs, cats and a duck), and of course farm work as tasks were delegated throughout her large family. Wanting to focus her attention on dogs, she decided to expand her experience and knowledge.  Molly found work at kennels and a local breeder doing various tasks.  As she continued her quest for more hands-on experience, she set her goals high and took a leap to work with Mason Dixon K9. Molly is ecstatic to be with both her human and furry packs at MDK9, and when she’s not at the farm taking care of all the pups, you can find her helping to rehome animals, drawing, playing volleyball, hanging with friends or taking care of her own animals.

RILEIGH M.

SENIOR KENNEL TECHNICIAN

Growing up on a farm certainly has advantages, you develop an enormous passion for animals both large and small, and Rileigh's passion and drive is huge!  When she’s not showing cattle from her family’s farm, planning and executing activities for her school’s Future Farmers of America (FFA) Veterinary Science Team, she’s showing her adorable French Brittany with the Carroll County 4H Dog Club, of which she’s been a member for more than 5 years.  Rileigh has always been actively involved with caring for animals. Prior to working for Mason Dixon K9, Rileigh worked with a dog breeder specializing in the Cane Corso, Schnauzer, and mini-Schnauzer breeds.

When she isn’t plotting her course to become a veterinarian, you can find her kicking around the dirt on the farm enriching the lives of her many animals (horses, dogs, cats and goats) in some unique new way.

ERIKA C.

KENNEL TECHNICIAN

Erika has always had a passion for caring for and helping animals, but wasn’t interested in some of the details of being a veterinarian; so the next best thing was working with Mason Dixon K9.  Erika came to know Mason Dixon K9 when her neighbor introduced her; Ryan played a critical role in returning her neighbors dog after she got loose.  After much thought and consideration, the hard work to provide the best care for all the dogs coming to the farm at Mason Dixon K9 greatly appealed to Erika.  It takes a special person to tune out all the noise of the world and focus the attention to the needs of dogs, and she does just that while working shoulder to shoulder with the human pack at MDK9.  When Erika isn’t helping neighbors free a deer from a fenced in yard, welding, or snuggling up to various animals, you can find her taking in a sunset with either or both of her pets.

SAVANNA M.

KENNEL TECHNICIAN

Savanna is no stranger to multitasking, not only is she preparing for college, but she has three dogs with varying needs; a Rottweiler/Mastiff mix, an American Mastiff and to round out the experience, a Shih Tzu Jack Russel Mix.  In addition to these three very different dogs, she also loves to ride horses.  Savanna believes that having these experiences has helped to prepare her for her collegiate endeavors - a degree in Animal Studies and Equine Management.  When she isn’t focused on her scholastic aspirations, you can find her soaking up all the knowledge around her and learning everything she can about animal behavior.  Being on the Mason Dixon K9 farm gives her access not only to countless dogs, but the sheep and chickens that are often wandering around providing natural distractions for dogs in training are an added benefit for animal studies and behavioral sciences.  “Working closely with so many different breeds on 50+ acres of land is a dream come true!  All the animals are so happy, and they all love their stay!” When Savanna isn’t providing love, care and attention to the dogs, you can find her rescuing kittens, riding horses, writing her novel or playing D3 soccer for her college - what an accomplishment! 

CASSIE K.

SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER

After graduating from college, Cassie began her professional career in health care and stayed in the industry for nearly two-decades.  Holding her degree in psychology, she felt it was time to expand her horizons to something she has been passionate about her entire life; helping others and communicating.  It wasn’t until nearly a decade ago when her family lost their beloved lab, that they discovered that fostering would heal the heartache.  Since then, Cassie and her family have fostered more than 70 dogs, all the while maintaining a busy family life in addition to two dogs of her own; Hendrix from MAGSR, and Joplin (foster fail) from Double Dog Dare Rescue.

When Cassie isn’t busy managing Mason Dixon K9 social media, you can find her looking after her family, fostering more dogs in need, or engaging in any number of outdoor activities like camping or kayaking.

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