Elizabeth M. Simpson, B.Sc., M.Sc., Ph.D.

Trainer, Therapy Dog Specialist


Elizabeth (Beth) teaches a Therapy Dog Workshop: Answering Your Questions, and two group classes Therapy Dog 1: Canine Good Neighbour Preparation and Therapy Dog 2: Advanced Volunteering Skills. In addition, she offers private lessons on these topics.

She is an experienced Therapy Dog Specialist, currently volunteering with BC Children’s & Women Hospitals Therapy Dog Program. Previously, she volunteered for 8 years with her dog Fudge who died in 2023, for Pets & Friends, St. John Ambulance, and BC Children’s & Women Hospitals Therapy Dog Programs. Thus, she has experience in a variety of settings including a care home, library, airport, and hospital. She is aware of the positive impact of therapy dog programs on both the clients and volunteers, and wants to help potential new teams make their way to rewarding volunteer positions in the community. Critically, this advanced training is aimed at building the skills of the human-dog team using positive reinforcement techniques.

Educational Background:

  • Dr. Simpson received her B.Sc. from the University of Toronto, and earned her M.Sc. and Ph.D. at the Ontario Cancer Institute. After further training in the USA she returned as a Professor in Medical Genetics at the University of British Columbia (UBC). She held a Canada Research Chair, Tier II, in Genetics & Behaviour, for ten years, the maximum term.
  • Beth apprenticed at DOGSmart Training in 2000, Vancouver, BC, 2020-2021 and has been training therapy dogs ever since.


  • Member, Canadian Association of Professional Dog Trainers Member
  • Investigator, BC Children's Hospital
  • Research Theme - Brain, Behaviour & Development
  • Professor, Department of Medical Genetics, Faculty of Medicine, UBC