Does your dog do any of the following?
- Bark incessantly at other dogs
- Seem fearful around other dogs
-Seem “shy” around new people or situations
If you’ve answered “yes” to any of the above, you may be one of the many people who wonder if their dogs will be too out-of -control, anxious, or disruptive, to participate in a class environment. For many, the mere thought of it seems completely unrealistic; “Surely my dog will be way too much to handle, I’ll only be embarrassed, and we’ll probably both end up getting kicked out of class!” Unfortunately, many of our students have shared horror stories from their experiences in other group classes, where things did not go well.
So here’s the good news; at Trainers Academy, LLC we feel that done properly, the group class environment can actually be the best place for you and your sensitive dog.
Now, keep in mind that only a skilled, experienced Instructor will understand how the environment needs to be set up to benefit a sensitive dog, and that not all dogs with social issues are a good fit for a group class experience. If your dog exhibits behavior that concerns you, do not put off finding a solution, because the longer the problem goes unaddressed, the harder it is to modify. Please give us a call, and based on the details of your dogs behavioral history, we will determine whether a group class, or a private in-home consultation, is the best option for you both.
Here are some comments from recent Trainers Academy, LLC grads with sensitive dogs:
"Barney and I thoroughly enjoyed Lisa's class. I really appreciated her expert advice, wisdom and never-ending patience, especially in dealing with a fearful dog like Barney. She and the volunteer trainers, Jennifer and Christine were very knowledgeable and helpful and fun, too!"
~Joanne Berry with Barney
"Hi all at Trainer's Academy/Woofolgy,
We just completed puppy training classes with Sue and her team last week at your place and wanted to thank you all for all your help and guidance in training my puppy Bella. When we started there, Bella was an extremely shy puppy who was very scared of both dogs and people. The very first class Sue assured me and my husband to just give Bella some time with those classes and be patient and that she would come out of her shell. I was not very sure of that, having seen her being so reluctant to even get close to any of the other puppies in her class. But we kept listening to the training team and their advise and did what they suggested us to do. One of Sue's suggestion was to start putting Bella in day-care to help her with her socialization further. We started that as well. By week 3, we started seeing huge improvements in Bella's socialization skills. The staff at your day-care has been so wonderful and nice to her and has contributed so much towards developing her socialization skills. Today Bella is such an outgoing puppy who plays with all kinds of dogs and people. I cannot believe the transformation I've seen in her. Sue has very aptly named her "party girl" :). The same puppy who refused to come out from under our chairs in week 1 and 2 at your class, now wants to play with every dog in sight! I cannot thank all of you enough for that :).
Even though her puppy classes have come to an end and your daycare is a little out of our way, we continue to take her there because she loves it there and I am very comfortable leaving her with your awesome daycare staff.
I especially want to thank Sue and her team for being so patient and so encouraging with her (and me) Thanks to them, and to the daycare staff, I have a completely transformed puppy. So, thank you so much for all your help and effort. And keep doing the great work you all do with dogs and pet parents!"
~Priya Singh with Bella
"Thank you so much for a great experience with Pork Chop. We had been very apprehensive about how he would do but he really came out of his shell and surprised us on wanting to learn. Starting with a frightened, timid rescue dog to having a playful and willing to learn boy has been an amazing transformation. He has come a long way and we thank you for the tools to help us continue to work with him to have him be even happier. He is now eagerly sitting for treats at home!!"
Stacy, Joe and Pork Chop
"Jeni is becoming much more comfortable around other dogs... the exposure to other dogs in a controlled environment has been very helpful for her. She still has a long way to go but the class was the perfect environment for her to work on her relaxation skills. She is quickly becoming much more social with people and in fact I would hardly consider her shy anymore, we had visitors over the other day, a male and a female and she approached BOTH of them on her own with no prompting and allowed them to pet her. Interacting with the staff at Trainers was helpful with this. If we had not had enough individual attention and care to Jeni's special needs in the class she would not have been able to be successful. Participating in a class with Jeni would not have been possible with any other program... Lisa was absolutely wonderful in helping Jeni and me both feel comfortable in class and not pushing either of us beyond what we were ready for. She also was great about letting me dictate the direction of each class for Jeni when I knew she was overwhelmed, but giving lots of valuable advice along the way for helping her relax. I appreciated her taking a phone call outside of class to discuss some of Jeni's anxious behaviors and how to help. All of the instruction was very quality advice for every dog owner and every dog!"
~Gani Vannini with Jeni
"I can't say enough about Trainers Academy. I have had the experience of both daycare & now the Intermediate class & can not say enough good things. Max is a shy dog by nature who is scared of new dogs & my vet recommended daycare for him. I called & they got him started right away & made me comfortable about leaving him. They started him off very slowly w/dogs who would help build Max's confidence. After a few weeks he was able to start to play in larger play groups. One day we were at the vet getting ready to leave & there was another dog at the counter, so I was waiting down the hall so Max would not start to bark at that dog. All of a sudden he started to whine & and tried to drag me towards the counter. I couldn't figure out what he was up to until I saw the dog at the counter, it was a dog that he would play with at daycare. Max knew him & was trying to get over for a visit. I know that they will never put him in a situation where he is uncomfortable.
I enrolled Max in puppy classes at a different school before taking class at Trainers. It was not a good experience for a dog w/Max's temperment, it was very cookie clutter like. There was no real individual attention & there were no options available when Max would get uncomfortable. After a disastrous attempt to leave him for a minute w/the trainer I decided to not continue w/the class & enrolled him at Trainers. From the first day it was a totally different experience. They set up a place behind the counter where we could go if Max got uncomfortable w/the other dogs. They were always positive about his abilities & never made me feel like he was bad dog because of his fear. They showed me how to reward calm, relaxed behavior & to distract him before he got stressed. The thing I liked best about the class was that it was teaching life skills for the dogs. This was not about how to perform in the show ring, it was about what to do if you were out walking & another dog ran up to you or how to greet strangers. Max will always be nervous w/new dogs & new situations but class gave both of us the skills to better deal w/his nerves.
I can say with total confidence that Max would be a totally different dog if it was not for Trainer's Academy."
~ Jessica Aumack with Max
"The entire staff was so helpful and patient with Jude. When she started the puppy class she spent the entire first class shaking from being afraid. Now she is so much more outgoing thanks to her experiences at Trainers Academy and their great staff."
~ Jack & Ida Dodd with Jude
Carter, 1 1/2 year old Affenpinscher
Background: We rescued Carter from a breeder who did not socialize the dogs at all, they were not exposed to anything but the other dogs and the breeder herself. We were under the impression that he was properly socialize and that he was just a little "shy". Carter was a year old when we got him in Jan. 2011. We were very surprised to find he was not shy but FEARFUL of everything! He became very attached to me and would run to me when anyone tried to touch him or came near him.
Improvements: Carter is all around a different dog, we still have a long way to go but we couldn't be happier with how far he has come. He will greet people and is overall trusting people more. It's like his personality has developed more in the last 6 weeks then in the past year! He is also doing great with all of his commands; sit, down, come, etc.
Thanks for everything!!
~ Sarah Miller and Carter
“I have now taken 2 dogs to Trainers Academy daycare and through classes with Lisa. Both dogs had behavioral issues, though each also very different. Lisa not only knew immediately how to work with both dogs, but she was understanding, cooperative and helpful in addressing each dogs issues and helping us to better understand those issues. With my current dog, Maya, I don't know what we would have done without Lisa. She has given us a sense of hope and has helped us immensely in making our dog feel safe in her surroundings. We still have a long way to go in getting Maya to where we'd like her to be, and I know that Lisa will be there every step of the way to help! Thanks, Lisa and the entire Trainer's Academy Staff. You are all awesome!”
- Carrie Jacobs and Maya
“I was so impressed with the amount of improvement I saw in my problem dog in just a few weeks. I had been putting off classes because I was terrified of him biting a trainer again. I finally signed him up and spoke with Lisa beforehand about his issues; she was incredibly reassuring. She spoke with all of the trainers prior to our arrival, so they all knew what precautions to take and how to encourage his social skills. By week 6, he was actually taking food out of their hands, wagging his tail, and smiling the whole time! I couldn't be happier or more proud of that dog!”
-Marie Horning and Secant
“Tess has definitely gained confidence (and personality). While you didn't see it in class as much, when we'd get home she'd strut around, like she really thought she was something else - tossing toys in the air, teasing Cody and initiating play. She now approaches neighbors that she knows - wagging her tail and asking to be petted! That's huge and beyond my expectations of what she'd get from the class. Thanks!!! “
-Jill Calvin and Tess