I first contacted Anthony when I couldn't do the most basic activity one can do with a dog: walk. My pit bull, Dice, was an absolute terror on a leash, lunging and barking at every dog we passed, and actually engaging in a few nasty scuffles with loose dogs running around. Even a dog barking in its own yard would set him off, and I was afraid of what could happen if I could not keep him under control.
After a thorough evaluation, Anthony explained that because Dice had no socialization, he was acting out of fear, not because he was naturally aggressive toward other animals. He asked me what my goals were for Dice, and I said I had no interest in Dice making doggie friends, just to be able to take a simple walk without scaring the living daylights out of everyone around us. Anthony explained that while Dice didn't need to "like" other dogs, he did need to learn how to behave around them if this goal of walking peacefully was ever going to happen. And happen it did! Within a few short weeks of working with Anthony, he had taught us avoidance skills that had us walking around my neighborhood as if we had been doing it forever, even having people comment on how well behaved my dog was. My dog!! Having the confidence to go a little further with Dice, I enrolled him in Anthony's Canine Good Citizen class, which he passed with flying colors! While still not dog social, Anthony showed us how we could be in public situations and still be great ambassadors for pit bulls.
But Anthony was not through with us. He invited us to be part of his ground-breaking off-leash socialization class. I personally concluded he either:
A: had sent us the invitation accidentally
B: was nuts
Sure, he had worked absolute wonders with Dice and our walking issues, but getting him socialized off-leash with other dogs? Not going to happen......period. But as with most of Anthony's ideas, I was intrigued. I had trusted him to take us this far, so why not give it a shot? (after ruling out option A, but B remained to be seen)
The first day, I literally bolted for the door in the middle of class. Not because anything bad had happened, but because I was afraid of what could potentially happen. Anthony assured me we belonged in this class, but the decision to continue was up to me. It took me a little while to get my courage to go back, but when I did, what happened next was nothing short of amazing. After a few classes, Dice began to relax. He started showing a cautious interest in other dogs without the fear aggression he had normally exhibited. And just yesterday, he walked next to me in class, no leash, no muzzle, along with 20 other unleashed dogs walking and playing around him!
I cannot wait to see what other milestones Dice reaches in this class, but one thing's for certain: None of this would have been possible without Anthony's canine expertise and his belief in what my dog was capable was. "Where there's a will, there's a way" has never been truer of my experience. Thank you, Anthony, for being the dog trainer extraordinaire you are!
When I called Anthony I had no idea how bad my problem with Koda, (my 4 year old American Bulldog) really was. She was a great home dog, loved people and loved kids. She was 3 when I introduced her to Keely, my Saint Bernard who was just a 6-week-old pup. I had instances with Koda trying to fight Keely at first, and I thought that was normal behavior for a dog learning to accept a new dog on its turf. This behavior didn’t last long and they soon became the best of friends. Koda would let her eat her food, share her toys and cuddle with her in the kennel. But I noticed Keely was the only dog Koda was getting along with. If any dog came in her reach she would attack. There was no barking or growling to warn me, it was just a fast attack by Koda. To fix this, I just kept Koda at home as much as possible.
About a year after introducing the two together they moved with me into a one-bedroom apartment. I walked them daily for exercise and let them have most of the apartment for their own space. But it didn’t take long for things to change. Koda started attacking Keely. I ended up getting bit during one of the fights and my family and friends where encouraging me to give up one of the dogs. That was not a solution in my mind. That’s when I called Anthony. I had seen his truck at my work a few times and then looked him up on the Internet and that’s how I found the person who saved our lives.
Anthony came to my place to observe the dogs. Right away he saw Koda’s aggression towards strangers entering and then I brought out Keely and he saw the aggression towards her. He suggested that he take Koda from me and work with her at his home. I visited his place and saw the capabilities he possessed over the dogs in his home. I also was able to witness him stop a dogfight, due to Koda trying to attack his dog Big Mac. I was very impressed and decided I was ready to confront this problem and do what it took to help Koda. Little did I know the biggest battle was helping myself. Anthony did an AMAZING job with Koda, I visited several times and saw how Koda got along with other dogs and could visit the dog park without an incidence accruing. Keely also stayed with him for a few weeks and I saw the two being able to be in the same room together again and eat food next to each other.
When the two of them came home I did have episodes. He had taught me the warning signs with Koda to look for because they are vague with her and showed me when to act on them. Koda learned to ignore stressful situations with other dogs but when walking started to redirect her anger on to Keely. I could not walk them side-by-side anymore. I knew it was my energy and stress level around the two. The situation had traumatized me and I was battling the process of letting go. Anthony realized what I was going through; he sat in the room while I cried for a good 30 minutes after a fight and reassured me that he would not give up on the dogs or me.
He then started to train me more and more on how to have the confidence that I could do this and have the control I wanted over Koda. He helped me set up routines and step-by-step situations to have complete control. With repetition and time I was able to achieve the outcome I was hoping for. Koda and Keely can not only be in the same room together now but also can lie next to each other and walk side by side. She can be around other dogs without attacking and even has bonded really well with my fiancé’s dog (wanting to play with him!).
Anthony can show you that the possibilities are endless. But it takes you as well to be willing to let these possibilities take place. I would recommend him to everyone who has an aggressive dog. The training he not only gives your dog but you are the key to success.
This review is long overdue. The story itself is also long, but it's worth a read if you have an aggressive dog and little hope left. My fiance and I rescued two adolescent Boxers from the streets of Tucson about 18 months ago - one male, one female. We named them Silo and Mina.
After finding that the original owners had dumped these poor guys on the street with no food or water in the middle of the Tucson summer, we worked on finding a rescue who could take them in. Every rescue we called within a 1,000 mile radius was full. No one could take the dogs, and we knew that they wouldn't stand a chance at the humane society. We weren't willing to let them face euthanasia, so we became the proud parents of two teenage Boxers.
It became immediately obvious that both of them had SEVERE aggression issues - and why wouldn't they? They'd never been socialized. When we would go on walks, a dog 100 yards away barking behind a fence would completely set them off. I felt nervous even opening the door for fear that a dog would be somewhere within view.
Aside from the aggression, though, they were some of the best behaved dogs I've ever been around. Like typical working breed dogs, they're very attached to my fiance and I and have excellent dispositions in the house. They're great with people and especially great with small children. I grew up in a house full of foster dogs, so I have been working with rescues my whole life. I've worked with several mildly dog-aggressive dogs, but nothing even approaching the level of Silo and Mina. We knew we needed professional help.
After scouring the internet and trying everything we could on our own (I am not kidding you - 2 hour walks daily, crate training, advanced obedience training, impeccable schedule consistency, mental and physical health checks), nothing worked. We had gone to several other trainers who attempted to help us. Many of them tried, but ultimately came up short.
The last straw for us was a trip to the park, where we were walking our dogs around in an attempt to get them used to being in the vicinity of other leashed dogs. Some people in the park had their dog off leash and didn't have voice control over him. He must have thought our guys looked friendly, because he came running over. No one was injured, but there was a snarly ugly backfire that sounded and looked terrible. I walked away terrified that our dogs would never be able to function normally around their own species.
I set out on a panicked Google search and called Anthony. He returned my call the next day and we set up an evaluation. He seemed very positive about our situation, but I wasn't sure. We'd had several trainers in the past tell us similar things. Still, he had the best testimonials, so we scheduled a 3 week board and train.
Within the first few days, Anthony was putting pictures up on Facebook of our dogs OFF LEASH with about 20 other off leash dogs. I literally did not believe it. I jokingly accused Anthony of photoshopping the picture. More photos started being posted, along with some videos, and I was dumbfounded by what I was seeing.
Following our board and train session, we started attending Anthony's off leash social classes for previously dog-aggressive dogs. I spent the entire ride to our first class trying to calm my nerves. I couldn't see how this was possibly going to work. To my surprise, our dogs not only successfully attended these off leash socialization classes, but they became regulars at doggy day care.
We've since moved to California, but I can tell you that the dogs we rescued 18 months ago are so much more relaxed now. They aren't perfect, but they're close. We've even successfully taken them to an off leash dog park a couple of times.
Our new neighborhood has a ton of dogs who run around off leash, and I don't have to worry about taking Silo and Mina on a walk around them. If strange dogs come up to us while we're out, they don't have a problem with it. Several days ago I walked outside to find that Mina had dug under the fence and in to the yard of our neighbors who have three small terriers. All five dogs were hanging out peacefully in the neighbor's yard like it was no big deal.
If you are looking for an answer to your dog's behavior problems and traditional obedience training isn't cutting it, Anthony is the answer. I would recommend him to anyone without question, regardless of the situation. He is a fantastic trainer and has changed the lives of all of the 2-legged and 4-legged inhabitants of our house.
I had been fostering a pit bull that was dog aggressive when I was introduced to Anthony. I had fallen in love with this dog but knew that I would not be able to keep her unless she could get to the point where she didn't want to hurt every dog she saw. She had come from a terrible, abusive situation and all I wanted for her was to have a life where she was safe, loved and balanced.
I met Anthony and immediately knew that his approach to training and dealing with behavioral issues was what I was looking for. It was agreed that the best approach was to send Molly off to Doggy Boot Camp where she could get socialized with other dogs. A month later, I visited her and saw her in a backyard with five or six other dogs running around playing, which was something I wasn't sure I would ever see! This gave me hope and the confidence in knowing that anything was possible.
Molly is home now with my family. A forever home....which is something that Anthony laid the groundwork for and made possible. I also know that he is a phone call or a visit away and always feel that he is there for continued support and guidance. The saying that "it takes a village to raise a child" well........it also takes a village to rehabilitate a dog.
Thanks Anthony for not only working with Molly, but also for training me as well!
After rescuing a three-year old female Albino Doberman two months ago, I really fell in love with her, but was unsure she was trainable. Albinism, especially in the Doberman breed, is considered a genetic defect, which was the reason behind my dog not getting adopted out. After being bred and abandoned, she was taken in by several rescue foundations. After spending the last year of her life in a crate, she had neither the social skills nor attention span, and was aggressive toward other dogs.
After three shorts weeks of Anthony’s personal training sessions, she is heeling and sitting without verbal commands, has developed a very strong bond with me, and is very social with other dogs. I am delighted in each week’s progress, as Anthony continues to develop Matty. In three short weeks, she has transformed into a happier and well-adjusted dog, as well as learning what humans expect from her.
When I asked my vet for a personal trainer, I couldn’t be more grateful that she gave me Anthony’s card. Thank you, Anthony, for your expertise, as you have changed my dog’s life in training her to understand her canine role with her new and forever human family.
-Rebecca Shields, MBA, CS
When I called Anthony we had four dogs and I was looking for a trainer who could teach obedience as well as some problem solving. I had previously hired three other local trainers, all who employed different methods, and I still had dogs pulling at the leash and terrorizing any dogs they passed during their daily walks. By the end of the second lesson with Anthony my dogs were no longer taking me for a walk, and I knew I had finally found a gifted trainer! In fact, by the end of that second lesson I had gained so much confidence in Anthony's training ability that I began searching for a fifth dog to add to our pack, and later found a deaf dog in need of a home!
Besides Anthony having what I believe to be an innate ability to understand pack behavior, and a gift in utilizing training techniques, he is the most professional trainer I have ever worked with. He is conscientious and timely, motivated and motivating, a skilled and patient teacher, respectful and kind, but probably most important to anyone looking for a trainer is that Anthony produces results! Finally, I have the dogs of my dreams. When I am out on walks and stop to put them through their obedience commands people have come over to me and asked if I was a trainer and how much I charge! I have to smile before passing along Anthony's name, and explain that they want an expert, not a student such as myself.
I have completed Anthony's basic obedience lessons, and am presently taking one of the group classes he offers. I plan to move on to his advanced services because I just love his training lessons so much, and my dogs do too! I can count on results, and this is not only satisfying, but motivating as well. I think dogs are a lot like children; when they are obedient the entire household is relaxed and the relationships grow infinitely deeper. Yet, obedience does not mean the loss of silliness and joy. The silliness and joy are increased when the household can relax! Ah, such pleasure!