A Best Friend Certified Professional Dog Training

Ruskin, FL

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About this pro

How does your business stand out?

I do not make false promises. My techniques work. We concentrate on "talking" to your dog in his own language. I have never met or talked to any other trainer/handler that teaches the groundwork that I teach. This is the "secret" that sets the stage for all future interaction with your dog.

What do you enjoy about the work you do?

A dog that is well-mannered and obedient is a dog whose world can grow to the extent his guardian/owner is willing. Too many dogs are left at home because of their behavior, some tethered outside, banished from their pack. Some, lose their lives, unadoptable and dangerous, merely doing their best at what they mistakenly feel they should. My greatest satisfaction is to be told I am no longer needed because a human and their dog have reached a meeting of the mind.

Location

Ruskin, FL 33570

Years in business

32

Number of employees

1

Times hired on Thumbtack

112

Reviews

54 Reviews
  • Linda L. Aug 30, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David was great!
    David O. Aug 30, 2017

    Thank you for your review. It was a pleasure working with your family and Cody. Please feel free to contact me throughout his life.

  • Tracy L. Jun 21, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
  • Amanda C. May 25, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David has alleviated a lot of stress in our family which I will be forever grateful for. He is very knowledgeable, patient and just a genuine person. We were able to share all the issues we were having with our little guy and David was able to help us on every single one of them. We can already tell Charlie is happier and that means the world to us. Just after the first phone call I knew it was going to be a life changing experience and we would be able to continue our life as a family with Charlie in the picture.
  • Jasmine A. May 9, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Great! David was very helpful and knowledgeable. I would highly recommend him to anyone looking to train their dog on an aspect.
  • Rebecca G. Apr 24, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Thank you Mr. Ochoa. I'll keep in touch about our progress. B. Geanaros and Scooter
    Mr. Ochoa is an expert and teaches the owner well about how to effectively handle their own dog. He does so by ticking to the themes of: the owner being in control as the "leader"; sending consistent messages; and teaching the pet to work for its praise/affection through following with the leader's commands/expectations. Whew, I have a lot of work to do with Scooter...but we will be better for it.
  • Janet W. Apr 20, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David is very knowledgeable and is a phenomenal trainer (humans and dogs, alike!!). Our puppy, Sadie, was unruly and aggressive, and David taught our family how to make our puppy into a dog with manners. With what he taught us and some behavioral modifications, life will be much better for everyone! We are looking forward to a happier puppy, too!
  • Ernest D. Mar 28, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review Updated
    First time puppy owners!!!
    As a first time dog owner, David provided us with the tools and training that we needed. His experience and knowledge was evident from the moment he arrived at our house and interacted with our puppy. David provided 4 hours of extensive training,some of which had immediate results for our puppy, Tucker. We have been using everything that David has taught us and we are continuing to see improvements with each and every day. Our family can not say enough good things about David as he has truly helped these "first time puppy owners". We highly recommend him!
    David O. Apr 1, 2017

    Ernest, thank you so much for the great review. It was actually fun working with your family. Our contact is for the life of your dog so keep in touch and feel free to call with any questions. Give Tuck a hug for me.

  • Verified Review Original
    First time puppy owners!!!
    As a first time dog owner, David provided us with the tools and training that we needed. His experience and knowledge was evident from the moment he arrived at our house and interacted with our puppy. David provided 4 hours of extensive training,some of which had immediate results for our puppy, Tucker. We have been using everything that David has taught us and we are continuing to see improvements with each and every day. Our family can not say enough good things about David as he has truly helped these "first time puppy owners". We highly recommend him!
  • Arianna T. Mar 11, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Look No Further
    David has a very clear high level of experience, as evidenced by his fusion of many different styles of training that roll into his extremely effective training methods. Not only has his training been amazingly useful for our one-year-old dog, Annabelle, David was also great at explaining the "why" behind each of his techniques in a fascinating way. I took care not to write a review until there was time to prove his methods, and boy did they ever prove themselves! Knowing the reasons behind corrections and training techniques has allowed us to come up with creative ways of teaching Annabelle new things. It is great to know that stepping into your dog's personal space will cause them to take a step back, but knowing that using their space as a tool in place of uselessly barking commands at them (pun intended) to clarify your intentions to them is mind-blowingly useful. These are the types of things that David teaches. To anyone reviewing multiple profiles, look no further. We paid for a four-hour session, then were told, surprisingly, that—as long as what David taught us was abided by—we would not need to schedule another meeting. That fact has turned out to be the case in practice, and our Annabelle will be a Mensa graduate before you know it!
    David O. Apr 1, 2017

    Arianna, Thank you so much for all your kind words. I feel humbled. Please let me know if I can help you further. Take care and hug Annabelle for me.

  • Janet K. Mar 5, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Your New Best Friend
    David provided four hours of extensive training for me, a first time puppy owner, and my puppy. I saw immediate results that carried over after he left. I still have work to do with my puppy, but knowing I can call David for advice any time is a blessing. I can't image anyone else providing so much knowledge and so many training techniques with positive results in such a short period of time. I highly recommend him. He'll become your new best friend!
    David O. Apr 1, 2017

    Thank you Janet. Give yourself full credit for your dog. Starting training as a puppy is the best way to develop a great companion.

  • Sean W. Feb 21, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Three dogs and a newborn. David saved us from having to possibly give our pets to a family member.
    Very personable man. Genuine experience and you could tell from the initial phone conversation to when he left that he cares about animals and wants to help people resolve their issues so we can leave peacefully with our fur babies. My wife is three months pregnant and we have a medium sized house with THREE dogs. 5 yr old german shepard, 5 yr old bulldog/boxer and a 3 years old boston terrier. He definitely helped us understand the dogs better and by the end of our day the dos were already showing signs of improvement from what they had learned.
    David O. Feb 21, 2017

    Sean! Thank you so much for the nice words. It was a pleasure working with Susan, Emily and you. I felt we engaged. Give Stella, Carlo, and Mugsy a hug for me.

  • Brandi A. Feb 8, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Essential training tools and understanding doggie dynamics
    We really enjoyed David teaching us how to interact with our dog (Milo) so that we could continue our training long term. He explained how our interactions are perceived by Milo - and that has been a revelation! Milo has been doing super great - learning to play and not run off! He also taught us ways to help get Milo better socialized. David gave us the tools to succeed and now we are rest assured that Milo can remain part of our family.
    David O. Feb 21, 2017

    Brandi, Thank you. It's always great to hear someone is working the program and doing so well. It was so nice to work with you and Andrew and to meet Sonya. Give Milo a hug for me.

  • Tiffany S. Jan 22, 2017
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Undeniably the best trainer you will ever get.
    For anyone serious about training their dog, this trainer is the best option by far.
    David O. Jan 29, 2017

    Thank you Tiffany. I appreciate this great review. Please hug Dan for me.

  • Kevin W. Dec 18, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Wow!
    David was very pleasant andknowledgeable. His experience and training were on display from the moment he entered my home. Would highly recommend David to those out there looking for an experienced trainer.
    David O. Jan 7, 2017

    Thank you Kevin for this great review. Please feel free to contact me anytime.

  • Rebecca R. Dec 11, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David was wonderful with my Sheppard mix and 2 small dogs! 😊 Highly recommend!
    David O. Dec 12, 2016

    Rebecca, thank you for your nice review. It was a pleasure working with you, Bear, Gucci, and Bubbles. Our contact is for the life of your dogs. Let's keep in touch.

  • Charles D. Nov 25, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    The right choice for me!
    I am very satisfied with the tools that David filled my head with ...so that I would better understand the thinking of my German Shepard pup. He is very skilled and takes charge immediately...and the dog understood that fact! I am sure my concerns will lessen and I can already tell that there is a different attitude in the house! Thanks, David...
    David O. Dec 3, 2016

    Charlie! Thank you so much for the review. I appreciate it. I'm glad things are progressing. It was so nice to meet and work with you. Hug Marley for me.

  • Lita H. Nov 23, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Great technique!
    David was very patient.. he explain everything from dog perspective and try to understand why dog do certain way. We still have way to go to be a perfect dog but we def see the different since he came. And totally a relief knowing we can call him anytime. Glad we hire him and will recommend to ppl I know that need help.
    David O. Dec 3, 2016

    Lita, Thank you for such a nice review. It was nice working with you Matt and Beau.

  • Deb Y. Nov 22, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Dog Training
    David was excellent in all aspects of the training. My dog is doing much better.
    David O. Dec 3, 2016

    Debbie, Thank you for the nice review. I appreciate it. It was so nice to meet and spend time with you and Walter.

  • Adam R. Nov 21, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Best Dog Trainer
    David is a phenomenal trainer. We have a 1 1/2 year old pit mix rescue. We had only had him a week when David came over for training. In just one session, our dog made major strides in all areas of training. David went above and beyond expectations and even helped us with an incident at a dog park where our dog was attacked by another dog, by showing us how to safely separate the dogs and protect our dog from the aggressor dog. After following David's instructions for the following week we have continued to see improvements. We get complements about our well behaved dog when we are out in public. I recommend that anyone looking for a dog trainer contact David at A Best Friend Certified Dog Training.
    David O. Nov 21, 2016

    Adam and Beth, thank you so much for a great review. I'm glad to her you so happy. Keep up the good work. Hugs to Bruno

  • Melanie S. Nov 4, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    A true dog whisperer!
    David was awesome! From the moment he walked in the door I could tell it was going to be a great learning experience for me as well as Claire!
    David O. Dec 3, 2016

    Melanie, Thank you so much for your review. It was a pleasure meeting you, Teeny, Dobby, and of course, Claire. Very nice picture of both of you.

  • Kai I. Oct 11, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    The best training you can find!
    David was very professional, knowledgeable and thorough. The training far exceeded our expectations within the 30 minutes and by the end of the first hour we could already see a tremendous improvement in our dogs behaviors. We have been using everything that David has taught us every day and our lives and our dogs lives are better for it. I would highly recommend a session with David!
    David O. Dec 3, 2016

    Hello Kai, Thank you so much for your great review. It was nice meeting you, Megan, Lincoln, and Tulane. Keep up the good work.

  • Kathy M. Sep 23, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    The dog whisperer.
    Duncan was a different dog after David spent 4 hours with us and him. He's still a work in progress, but David gave us the tools that we need to work with him. Duncan is a large lab 8 month old puppy that was unmanageable until David came. I can now actually walk him without a problem, where I could never walk him before, and he's not eating the furniture. Realistically, don't expect David, who is excellent, or anyone else, to "fix" your dog in a day. You have to follow through and do what he tells you in order to have the behavior that you want. I would highly recommend having David come to assist with training your dog , and training you to train your dog. He is truly the "dog whisperer". Outstanding. I can't begin to say enough good things about David.
    David O. Dec 3, 2016

    Kathy, Thank you for this great review. Take full credit for your dog's progress. You are the only one who can teach him to live with you. It was great meeting you and spending time together. Hug Duncan for me.

  • Kim J. Sep 23, 2016
    This is the trainer you should hire.
    Our 21 month German Shepherd Rescue lacked skills in socialization at the park, car manners and needed at tune up in walking on a leash without pulling, exiting and entering our home & car on command versus the German Shepherd making that decision. In two hours, goal reached and written instructions received help us stay consistent with daily goals & training. My husband and I highly recommend Mr. Ochoa.
    David O. Dec 3, 2016

    Thank you so much for such a nice review. It was nice working with an awesome animal like Sasha. Keep up the good work.

  • Ashley A. Sep 16, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Worth every dollar 😊
    Excellent
    David O. Sep 19, 2016

    Thank you so much for your review, great review. You're a great doggy mom.

  • Judy G. Sep 2, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    He puts the Pro in Professional !
    David is an extremely patient and experienced trainer. He puts the Pro in Professional! We learned so many things that keep the dog centered and the heiarchy of the order. We made very simple changes that made a huge difference. The results were almost immediate. We are much more in control and the small on-going exercises have definitely helped towards his separation anxiety. This was a working yet pleasant session. I would recommend David in a heartbeat. Thanks David!
    David O. Sep 11, 2016

    Thank you so much for the great review. It was a pleasure working with you, Frankie's and Boba. Keep up the good work Frankie. Boba is very lucky to be yours

  • Frank F. Aug 22, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David is a wonderful dog trainer. He showed up right on time and stayed longer than planned. The training was excellent and geared mostly to us (humans). The dogs know, we just needed to learn how to communicate with them better. It will take some time to get where we want to be but we have the tools we need. Frank and Ann
    David O. Sep 1, 2016

    Thank you! It was a pleasure meeting you guys. Please feel free to contact me if you need anything. Thank you again so much for a great review.

  • Rochelle T. Aug 4, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David did a wonderful job with our three Bouvier des Flanders. Ranging from ages 12 years old to 3 months old. In four hours he had worked out all of our trouble spots from tugging on the leash to charging the postman at the front door! David is a fantastic trainer!! Sincerely, Rochelle T. - Tampa,Fl.
    David O. Sep 1, 2016

    Hi Rochelle Thank you for a great review. It was great working with you guys. I hope all is well. Please feel free to contact me for anything else.

  • Mechele Y. Jul 23, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Excellent trainer. We knew most of the basics but David taught us how to consistantly apply them and made us realize the language that dogs speak and how to effectivly communicate with them. Extremely helpful training session. Thanks David!
    David O. Sep 1, 2016

    Thank you Mechelle for a wonderful review. It was great working with you guys. Please feel free to contact me for anything else.

  • MaryTee M. Jul 13, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David came to help us with our five year old rescue mixed terrier. We've had her for one year. Some negative behavior had been exacerbating. I was ready to take notes so I'd remember. David said he's leaving basic notes to review. I did not need to write what David what explaining and demonstrating. Everything was logical, straight forward, interesting and easy to understand. He is seasoned, exceptional with dogs (and humans), and what he teaches works. We knew basic commands but paramount was that David told us what to do should she not listen (which she often didn't). We went outside to practice and were amazed. Not only could David elicit the proper behavior but my husband and I could as well. I was truly shocked. David gave us an incredible amount of fascinating information that was easy to retain and we practiced so much that I thought he had been with us an extra hour but he hadn't. David left late afternoon. From that evening on, my husband and I have followed his directives and the negative behaviors have ceased. I've purposely not named which behaviors we needed to correct because it was obvious that what David taught crosses over to all types of behaviors. I can guarantee that whatever issues you have with your dog, David can teach you how to alleviate them as long as you follow through. It is evident that practicing David's techniques are not only good for the owners but the dog is much more satisfied. "A Best Friend Certified Dog Training" is second to none.
    David O. Jul 13, 2016

    Thank you so much for a great review. It was a pleasure meeting and working with you guys and Tutu.

  • Dan B. Jun 27, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David was extremely professional and knowledgable. He was primarily here to help us with our newest dog, but he also included helpful tips for our other dog. We have a long way to go with our dog, but I have no doubt that the tools he provided us with will make a huge difference.
    David O. Jun 27, 2016

    Thank you so much for the nice review. I really appreciate it. You guys take care.Type your response to this review.

  • Kim J. Jun 26, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    I Just adopted a 18 month old German Shepherd rescue who has basic training but lacks social skills, walking on leash & entering/exiting the house. David taught me how to be a better pet owner and at 110 pds how to best handle my 71 pd dog. Sasha already has shown better skills in walking, not pulling, and understands that my family and I are the alphas and seems relaxed knowing that. I highly recommend David and if Sasha seems to need a tune up when she hits another puberty stage, I will call him without hesitation. David was our "Dog Whisper."
    David O. Jun 27, 2016

    Thank you so much for the nice words. I really do appreciate it. You guys will make it work. Take care.Type your response to this review.

  • Jason K. Jun 17, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    From the moment David arrived he was awesome! I never thought my dog could obey commands, but by the end of the 4 hour training she was starting to catch on, and David had great control of her. He has left us with a great understanding of how to continue training our dog, and we are excited to apply the principles on a daily basis. I HIGHLY recommend David if you are considering a dog trainer, he's the best!
    David O. Jun 21, 2016

    Jason! Wow. Thank you so much. .

  • Janet W. Jun 16, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Very impressed with the training session with my new foster dog. David is very knowledgeable and helped me with the initial introduction between my dog and the new foster dog.
    David O. Jun 21, 2016

    Thank you Janet. I really appreciate this.

  • Ron W. Jun 11, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    Dog training Very professional Well presented
    David O. Jun 21, 2016

    Thank you Ron. That was nice of you. I appreciate you taking the time to do this review.

  • DWAYNE G. Jun 4, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    My Pharaoh Hound had the pleasure of working with David just this morning. He came in and within seconds I witnessed my 1.5 year pup become a different dog. She was mentally and physically challenged today and I know she loves it. Since he left my house she's been taking a good snooze. The most important thing I can tell you is that he's not training the dog, he's training you. As long as YOU'RE willing to learn and listen to what David is saying, your dog will learn and listen. You can't have one without the other. Great experience and have already spread the word to 3 people. Thanks again David! --Jon, Dwayne & Nola
    David O. Jun 21, 2016

    Wow, thanks you guys. I just saw this. I hope all is well. Always feel free to call. No matter how much time goes by.

  • Brenda B. May 24, 2016
    Dog Training - Group Lessons
    Verified Review
    We have a new best friend! Our 60 lb Labradoodle was out of control and we didn't know what to do. David spent several hours showing me and my three sons how to handle Maggie. By the end of that first session she was like a new dog, she no longer jumps in the furniture, pulls on a leash, or chews every pillow to shreds. She's a lovely member of the family and we now can thoroughly enjoy her. David really knows how to work with dogs and their owners. He is very patient and consistent. I look forward to having him help us with more advanced training in the future.
    David O. Jun 27, 2016

    Brenda, thank you for the nice words. I really appreciate it. I hope all is well. Take care.

  • Heidi S. May 2, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David came to our home to meet and teach us how to train our dog Oscar. David is patient and thoroughly explains the reasons behind the techniques to be used.
    David O. Jun 27, 2016

    Heidi, thank you for your nice words. I really do appreciate it. Take care. ,

  • Allison W. Apr 28, 2016
    Dog Training - Group Lessons
    Verified Review
    David O. Jun 27, 2016

    Allison, Thank you for the 5-Star rating. I appreciate it. Hope all is well.

  • Bonnie W. Apr 27, 2016
    Dog Training - Group Lessons
    Verified Review
    This was an all around outstanding experience. In a few hours David Ochoa completely and gently transformed my daughter's dog into a wonderfully behaved pet. He also taught us so much about how dogs think, and what we have to do to help her realize what we expect from her. Cesar Milan has nothing on David, who is truly the dog whisperer!!! His services are worth every penny.
    David O. Sep 1, 2016

    Hello Bonnie, I just saw this great review! Thank you so much. Please remember you can always call for anything else. I hope all is going well.

  • Pat P. Apr 1, 2016
    Dog Training - Group Lessons
    Verified Review
    I haven't heard back from David ..
  • Rachel B. Mar 24, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David is a great trainer. I have a 60 lb 5 month old male Akita puppy who thought he was the boss until I found David. He has done wonders for my Bear and myself. When ever I have an issue all I have to do is call and get advise or make an appointment. Don't know what I would do without him. He is awesome with my Bear and with training me to train my puppy.
  • Karen S. Feb 7, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David was very prompt, patient, knowledgeable, experienced and professional. He taught us many strategies to help us work with our puppy. We would definitely recommend him. Thank you, David!
  • Amanda W. Jan 26, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
  • Eddie G. Jan 24, 2016
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    We had the pleasure of meeting david this morning to help us correct behavior issues with our german shepherd,we spent 4 hours with him and in that time we out shepherd has already showed us a huge positive difference in him,I look forward to keep working with my dog and seeing the results improve,I definitely already plan on having another session with david for more advanced training!thank you so much david for your help,he takes the time to train us so that we can train our dogs,showed us proper ways to feed him,let him in and out,and walking which was a big problem,thanks again for all the help and positive advise for our dog.
  • Jo V. Dec 14, 2015
    David Ochoa, in my opinion, is probably one of the best dog trainers I have had the pleasure to work with. I have some physical limitations, that he was able to address & modify to my particular needs, while teaching me a different approach to train my 73 pound black lab mix named Churchill (he also helped me with my 13 pound dog, Winston). I had had several bad falls while walking Churchill. I desperately need help to stop Churchill lunging at barking aggressive dogs. David explained what I had to do, why I needed to think like an alpha canine, and how I was to implement the corrections with Churchill. David's knowledge about dogs is incredible; he truly understands what he is doing & his love of dogs is clearly seen. Just trust him and remember you must be the top dog in the house. I highly recommend David, as does my spouse! Already, after 2 days, I have gotten compliments on how good Churchill is behaving. David said I could call him at any time if I had any further questions about handling my dogs. He knows what he is doing!!
  • Nathan and Tyne P. Nov 9, 2015
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David Ochoa is working with our German Shepherd four a couple weeks now. His expertise and knowledge is amazing. He has been helping us get our dog to listen and follow commands and is an outstanding trainer. I would recommend him to anyone!
  • Teresia M. Oct 20, 2015
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    The ability to break down and explain all my questions was wonderful. He is a wonderful trainer. David is a positive influence in not only the dogs lives but mine as well.
  • Jeff L. Oct 14, 2015
    Dog Training
    Verified Review
    David showed us, in the first session how to take ccontrol of our sweet dogs gone wild. His explanations were clear and to the point. I will definitely recvomend him to our friends.
  • Sonja M. Oct 5, 2015
    David is an extremely confident and experienced dog trainer. After our initial 2 hour session I had a completely different dog. I was truly amazed! He's affordable, honest and gets right to the issues.
  • Rene R. Oct 2, 2015
    I have always been a dog owner of small dogs. So, when I decided to get a Doberman, my husband thought I was crazy. Yogi was 9 weeks old when I brought him home. I knew I was going to need help learning how to handle a larger, very intelligent breed. I was referred to Dave and he started working with us on a weekly basis. We did training in the home as well as parks, restaurants, Home Depot, alleys and many other places. Dave is incredibly talented and what he has taught myself, husband and Yogi has made our family love and appreciate our dog. I can walk or run with Yogi anywhere and he never barks or tries to attack another dog, cat, bird, squirrel, etc. He stays when told, comes when called and it is all because of the patience and training from Dave. My husband now says how lucky we are to have Yogi in our life. He is now 16 months old and I would not hesitate to call Dave for additional training. Yogi loves Vato...Dave's German Shepherd too. Thank You!!!
  • Melanie O. Sep 2, 2015
    My relationship with my dog Kaeto has changed dramatically! The first session was very informational, David gives you the tools to gain this special bond wih your dog. Kaeto picked up the commands quick, with my consistency being the most important factor. He is now quick to respond when I call his name..... The first time finally. He never pulls on walks or going up stairs, waits to be invited through all entrances. It's just amazing. Thank you David for everything!
  • Darnell C. Aug 30, 2015
    David is very professional and knowledgeable. He helped me with my too protective, alpha German Shepherd. David is easy going and knows how to communicate and properly train dogs and their owners. My shepherd loves him and he is the only person that I have trusted my dog with when I have gone away. I highly recommend his dog training services!
  • Elizabeth S. Aug 29, 2015
    David Ochoa is indeed A Best Friend to both dog and owner. Being a former Rottweiler owner, I rescued a 2 y.o. male Rottweiler who had been though 2 previous owners. He was a dominant alfa-male in the truest sense; large & strong. When we got him, he acted wild, untrained, confused & disconnected to human interaction. Additionally, he had been crated for long periods of time. This dog was on his last chance. He was in desperate need of a "special" trainer, David was definitely what the dr. ordered.(literally .referred by our local vets office).His many years of experience and unique understanding of dogs was amazing. Watching him connect to our dog and literally "whisper" or communicate in his way with him seemed almost magical to me. David has a gift with animals but also with people. His lessons carry on far beyond the immediate trainings. Because of our time with David ,Hoss is a happy, well adjusted LOVED part of our world! Kudos and many thanks!!!! .
    David O. Sep 22, 2016

    I never thanked you for this review! Thank you so much. I hope all is well with you guys. Give Hossa hug for me.

  • Kelvin R. Aug 29, 2015
    Excellent job training techniques proved successful recommend take time to model and is patient with handling our dog
  • Jean L. Aug 29, 2015
    I have a Jack Russell terrier. She was 8 years old when I contacted David at A Best Friend. She had been attacked by another dog and had become aggressive toward all other dogs. My friendly little dog was now a nightmare at Ft Desoto beach and all dog parks. After several training sessions with David and by following his instructions when we were on our own I had my buddy back!

Q&A

What is your typical process for working with a new customer?
I will come to your home to meet with you and anyone who directly handles your dog. We will share much information. During this time I will do an assessment and see how your dog lives with you. I will assess your relationship and interaction. If your dog is having issues we very likely will make some human changes. Together we will formulate a plan and a strategy to get your dog on the route to being your well-behaved companion. We will see your dog begin to learn very quickly. You will learn and practice a few very important techniques, many human behaviors, and how to communicate with your dog.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
Please see abestfriend.org In addition to the information on my simple website my experience has been to work with tiny Yorkies and Chihuahuas to massive Rottweilers and Presa Canarios.
How did you get started doing this type of work?
Someone once pointed out to me that dogs seemed to behave differently in my presence.
What types of customers have you worked with?
People who are planning to get a dog or have recently gotten an 8-week-old puppy. First-time dog owners to people who have had and trained their own dogs all their lives and now have acquired a dog that is 'different'. I very often work with people who rescued a dog whose behavior is changing or deteriorating.
Describe a recent project you are fond of. How long did it take?
There are many. The dogs that come to mind are dogs who were adopted at a rescue. A few of these dogs had been adopted two, three, even more, times already and their new human began to realize the reason.
What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a provider in your area of work?
Make sure your pet is healthy. Rule out sickness, discomfort, pain or chemical imbalance. These can all be causes of distraction, inability to focus, reactivity and what may be mistaken for aggression. Make sure you pick someone who knows and teaches you the all-important groundwork on which all obedience work should be based. Beware of those who use "only positive reinforcement " to train dogs.
What questions should customers think through before talking to professionals about their project?
Are you ready to commit some time and effort? Are you ready to not only change your dog's life, but also make changes in your own life?