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Dog Behavior Specialists Close to You

Thumbtack helps thousands of people asking, ”How do I connect with the best dog behavior specialists in my area?” We offer free custom quotes from dog behavior specialists near you, ready to train your dog.

Dog Behavior Specialists Close to You

Top Rated Dog Behavior Specialists Around Ashburn, VA

Top Pro
Perfect Poochies
4.9
from 70 reviews
  • 2 years in business
  • 119 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Brittany M.
Verified review

Kathryn was very knowledgeable and left me with some great tips to help with my dog's behavior.

Top Pro
Ruff House Dog Training
4.9
from 168 reviews
  • 3 years in business
  • 310 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Sabah B.
Verified review

Ryan really knew what he was doing and set a good baseline for proper dog behavior. Our dog is very large, bit luckily he has a large dog himself and knew what he was doing. We really appreciated his visit!

Top Pro
Horse and Hound Wellness
5.0
from 52 reviews
  • 6 years in business
  • 91 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Brenda H.
Verified review

JoJo was outstanding with my dog Daisy who is 11 months old and exhibiting puppy behaviors. We are using JoJo's suggestions and are making great progress.

PackFit
4.5
from 34 reviews
  • 96 hires on Thumbtack
Jennifer A.
Verified review

I've had one lesson with Kimberly and wished I had contacted her sooner to get started on training my German Shepherd rescue. What I like best about Kimberly's approach is her care and attention for the well-being of my dog. Working with Kimberly has helped me to understand that an obedient dog isn't necessarily a happy or well-adjusted dog. Kimberly's method of training takes in the "whole dog" concept addressing nutrition, mental, and physical fitness. As a new dog owner she's helped me to understand how to interpret my dogs behavior and what my dog needs from me as the pack leader. Training is fun, the homework is simple and Kimberly is always on hand to answer a question. The welcome package (lots of goodies) she provided exceeded my expectations and Kimberly has become my "go-to" for additional resources for my dog.

Top Pro
  • 11 years in business
  • 11 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
April A.
Verified review

This was our first experience with a professional dog trainer. Sharon was very knowledgeable and professional in explaining to us the different types of dog behaviors while explaining at the same time the solutions to correcting bad behavior. Sharon took the time to ensure that we understood the lessons and was more than happy to continue each action until we were comfortable. We are glad that Sharon is available to answer any questions we have. Having a great first time experience with Bark Busters, we would recommend their help to others.

Top Pro
Dolores Murray
4.9
from 14 reviews
  • 17 years in business
  • 17 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Carly C.
Verified review

Dolores was amazing! We had just rescued our dog, Taylan, from an organization in Thailand and were concerned about her behavior toward our two cats. We didn't want to start right off with bad habits and weren't sure how to desensitize Taylan to our boys, so we hired Dolores. Immediately we felt comfortable with her and were impressed with her expertise and knowledge of dog behaviors. She left us with professional materials and talked with us about strategies for desensitization, which we've been practicing since our session. She validated our work with Taylan and helped give us peace of mind that we weren't ruining our new girl :). I would recommend Dolores to anyone who is seeking professional, knowledgeable help with various dog behaviors...and also help with human uncertainty!

For Pup's Sake, LLC
4.9
from 21 reviews
  • 4 years in business
  • 48 hires on Thumbtack
Suzanne M.
Verified review

Lara is terrific, and we recommend her wholeheartedly! Whether you need basic obedience or have a dog with serious problem behaviors (as was the case with our dog), Lara's in-depth knowledge and flexibility can help you build a better bond and happier co-existence with your dog. In our case, we deeply appreciated that Lara recognized those areas where we could use new/improved techniques and skipped over the areas where we were ok. This saved us both time and frustration, and allowed us to more quickly address the true problem areas. We still have much work ahead, but I am incredibly grateful to Lara for putting us on the right track!

FourDogLovers
5.0
from 10 reviews
  • 4 years in business
Nika W.
Verified review

When I met Kevin my expectations were low for my dog. He seemed to be pretty much out of control and I was told by several other trainers that his breed could not be trained. When Kevin came in the first day he got my dog to sit and actually follow a command. He accomplished more in one day then other trainers did in months. As the time went on I saw my dog's Behavior change drastically. He became an overall better dog and seemed much happier. Also as he was training Kevin trained me as well. I realize that I was doing a lot wrong and that was the cause of a lot of his behaviors. I realized in order for my dog to be better I had to be a better owner. All of this I learned from Kevin. I thought I was a dog whisperer until he showed me the right way to do it. Highly recommend Kevin because he doesn't have a method where one fits all. He takes the time out to learn your dog and customize the training. He also educates himself all things animals. You can contact him and get advice on just about anything for your pet. And if he doesn't know at that moment he will find out for you. It's hard to find people who Do It For the Love of Animals. Kevin is one that clearly has a connection with animals that allows you to be comfortable with him and the care of your dog. Having Kevin train your pet would be the best thing you can do for your family.

Consistent Canine, LLC
5.0
from 5 reviews
  • 3 years in business
  • 2 hires on Thumbtack
Andrea V.
Verified review

Kristy is amazing! She will come out and meet you and your pooch and spend time getting to know you and your needs. I dropped my boy (Jax - 90 lb. 9 months German Shephard) Saturday morning and he stayed with her for 3 weeks. A huge bonus is that she has other dogs, kitties, bunnies, and chickens - so Jax was exposed to and learned how to behave and be patient with them. We had a mid-training visit (she will do this with you during, OR after training) and spent two hours going over what he had learned. Even after only a week or so he had picked up many skills. It was me that needed to learn now:). Once home Jax immediately investigated the entire house and literally did some of his initial behaviors (like he was trying to make up for lost time and fit them all in within a few minutes). It was pretty funny actually. He knows the commands he was taught - there is no doubt. The more time I spend with him the more he is learning that he needs to follow those with me, as well, and not just Kristy:) He does test me, and in all honesty, I find myself breaking into laughter with him (not good for reinforcing his learning by the way). But, when I recompose myself and calmly and firmly bring him back to a place of obedience, he does "fall in line". He may not like it (the subtle whining is one indicator), but he does it. Part of the success once you have your pooch home is recognizing when you simply do not have their trainable attention. When Jax's energy and hormones are driving his puppy behavior I've found that isn't the time for me to "win" (frankly, because I don't, and reinforcing him winning is not good). I chose Kristy after connecting with her about in-home visits while I'm at work. That's how I learned of her training business. We met and honestly I just liked her. Jax liked her too - and that was important. My favorite part was the 3-week break and being able to clean my house without Jax thinking everything I was doing was for his enjoyment. Aside from that, it's clearly the effectiveness of Kristy's work. She also stays in touch with you to let you know how things are progressing. The biggest takeaway is learning how to properly use a pinch and/or e-collar, and that I need to be committed to reinforcing all the learned commands. What's truly great about Jax now is that I can, with confidence, take him hiking, out for walks, around other dogs (still a bit of a struggle - but honestly - that's a tough one for any pup!), public places, etc. and I know I have a different kind of control (he'll sit and remain sitting until I say otherwise).

Family Dog Business (FDB)
5.0
from 10 reviews
  • 1 year in business
  • 5 hires on Thumbtack
Mariah G.
Verified review

Working with Anthony has been amazing. He was so patient with Kennedy, she’s older so she can be a bit stubborn but he was understanding and attentive. He was honest and forthright, very flexible. I work a lot so my schedule can be crazy but he worked with me consistently and didn’t hold it against me when I had to reschedule last minute because of scheduling conflict. I’m so grateful for him, I have noticed such a huge improvement in my dog’s behavior. Would recommend him to everyone.

  • 33 years in business
  • 27 hires on Thumbtack
Jeff M.
Verified review

I started with Academy when our rescue 14 month GSD was a year old and am very pleased with the results. I'm not sure who is being trained though. If you have the time and opportunity definitely take the group class over a period of time. In a subtle way Haywood shows you insights into your dogs behavior while you work with the dog. There are no "trade secrets" in his classes. He explains in a friendly manner the whats, whys, and how to train and its dependent on the particular dog. Some dogs connect differently. You will eventually have a moment when you're home working with your dog when you realize that you're actually communicating with your dog. Reading the dog and answering back. Its amazing. I firmly believe that this is the place if you seriously want to understand your dog and have a well trained dog. There are many options available here for training. You really can't go wrong. Haywood has over 30 years in the business. I'm getting good results with him.

Good Dog Pet Care
5.0
from 1 review
    Jan G.
    Verified review

    Good Dog Pet Care is wonderful! We are experienced dog owners but our latest rescue turned out to be a "dominant" dog & we had no experience with that. Alex saved the day (& the dog)! His knowledge of animal behavior is superior & he taught us so much. His dog walking service is also superior. His employees all share his love of dogs, are prompt & reliant, & our dog always returns happy & tired! All I have to say is "Alex is coming" & she sits @ the front door waiting for him, without moving, until he gets here. It is very obvious how much Fiona loves Alex! We have used Alex's services for over a year now & couldn't be happier. Right now Alex & his dog Hank are staying @ our house for 2 weeks while we are on vacation. We are truly relaxed knowing that Alex is there & Fiona is happy & content. You will not regret using Alex!

    Adventure Paws
    4.9
    from 18 reviews
    • 3 years in business
    • 22 hires on Thumbtack
    Audrey W.
    Verified review

    Orla, the owner of Adventure Paws, is great! I cannot recommend her highly enough. We moved to Allston with our 7 year old Norwich terrier, who was not very happy about the change. Orla has patiently worked with our dog to make her more comfortable in the new neighborhood and with new dogs. Orla has been great about reinforcing training and working to curb bad behaviors/encouraging good behaviors. Our dog has been much better behaved since Orla came into the picture. She is highly responsive and flexible. We get text updates about our dog's daily walk and anything they worked on/fun things they did. If we ever need a change in timing Orla makes sure our dog is taken care of. Aside from daily walks Orla has stayed for overnight stays when we have been away - it was great to know that our dog was well taken care of when we were gone. If you need a dog walker in the Allston area Adventure Paws is the place!

    Paramount Family Services
    5.0
    from 6 reviews
    • 9 years in business
    • 3 hires on Thumbtack
    Ralph M.
    Verified review

    Paramount Family Services has provided for our family and Christian, our dog, exceptional services for over 2 years! Because of their experience and expertise, they provide more than a dog watching, dog sitting service, but a dog caring, dog vetanarian service. Christian loves Jonise, responds postively to her and looks forward to spending time with her whenever we travel out of town! We highly recommend them to dog owners who want the best possible care provided to their pets while in town or out of town!

    Elisa Allen Pet Services
    5.0
    from 18 reviews
    • 21 hires on Thumbtack
    Donna M.
    Verified review

    Elisa has been an outstanding care provider / trainer for our two Portugese Water Dogs. In addition to daily visits while we are working, Elisa also does overnight stays with the pups when we travel. Elisa is the only care provider they have known. As for training expertise, we call Elisa the "dog whisperer"! What she can get groups of dogs to do is nothing short of amazing!

    Top Pro
    Social Tailwaggers, LLC
    4.9
    from 19 reviews
    • 3 years in business
    • 33 hires on Thumbtack
    • Top Pro on Thumbtack
    Meg O.
    Verified review

    Jody came by to coach us through some issues we've been having with our puppy: nipping, barking, jumping, and leash pulling. Jody spent 1.5 hours teaching us techniques to work with our puppy, and managing our expectations so that we know what's normal puppy behavior. We're already seeing great results! Jody was very patient, knowledgeable, and helpful as we work to train our puppy to be the best dog she can be! All of her techniques are positive, and reinforced with treats. No awful choke collars, shock callers, or leash jerking necessary.

    Wholistic Hound Academy

    New To Thumbtack

      About

      Wholistic Hound Academy teaches you how to train your dog so that they make incredibly brilliant choices! We do more than just teach sit and down. We teach your dog the life skills that are so necessary for living in the human home. Our goal is help you and your dog enjoy living together...as it should be.

      Island Way For Dogs

      New To Thumbtack

      • 1 hire on Thumbtack
      About

      I thoroughly enjoy training animals whether it be dogs or horses. I have been training for over 30 years. Taining involves spending time with your animal and that is good for everyone.

      Dawn L.
      Verified review

      Dom was very professional and helpful. Besides walking, Butchy, he even taught him some better behavior!

      Off Leash K9 Training
      4.7
      from 15 reviews
      • 10 years in business
      • 38 hires on Thumbtack
      William T.
      Verified review

      I found Scott and Jen through Mid-Atlantic German Shepherd Rescue where I got my dog Stark as a LARGE puppy. MAGSR routinely send their "difficult" rescue cases to S&J for training prior to being adopted. I found their trust in these excellent trainers entirely well-founded. I selected the Board and Train option which is two weeks of intensive training with the result being dogs that are obedient and off-leash. They will teach your dog basic and advanced commands which are appropriate and useful for any dog owner. They also build confidence (a huge part of what my dog needed). They will send you daily pictures, videos, and progress updates while your pup is with them. When I picked up Stark, they gave me two hours training on what he had learned and the correct way to handle him with the e-collar. They are very clear and emphasized that the program is most successful when the owners put in a little time each day for two weeks or so reinforcing the commands in their "new" environment (e.g. at home with me). I worked with him pretty diligently and he has been fantastic! My 100lb German Shepherd is always the best behaved dog in the park and on the street (don't belive me? Come to Patterson Park NW side around 530-630pm any day of the week and see for yourself). He has grown in confidence and skill, making my life and experience exercising him much much better than before training. After training, I still had a problem with Stark's protectiveness of my home (he is a GS after all) especially with the dog walker. Scott and Jen immediately responded with advice and came to Baltimore (seriously!) to work directly with the dog walker. They had the problem cleared up in about 15 minutes. I can't recommend these guys enough, and I have tried. They are great humans, dog lovers, and most importantly, excellent trainers.

      • 17 hires on Thumbtack
      Megan B.
      Verified review

      Hill is a great person and dog trainer. He is very insightful and is all about client satisfaction. He is honest and upfront abut everything and goes to great lengths to help you reach your goals. He helped me better understand my Dal and her needs and provided a great approach that catered to my dog's style of learning and behavior. You won't find anyone else that knows dogs like he does.

      Q & A

      Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

      How old should a puppy be for training?

      Dog training shouldn’t wait until you’re having behavior problems. If you get a new puppy, start from the beginning with professional training to give both you and your puppy the tools you need for a healthy relationship. Dog training is as much about teaching the owner how to interact with their new dog as it is about the dog learning to behave. Puppy training can start as early as eight weeks old. Trainers who offer puppy training programs may works specifically with dogs between the ages of 8 and 18 weeks old. Trainers can teach owners about potty training and how to deal with accidents, working with separation anxiety, and training your pooch out of destructive behaviors like chewing, biting and demand barking. Puppies will start to learn to walk on-leash and other basic skills.

      In addition to behavior training, socializing your puppy is an important part of dog training. Socializing your dog means they become comfortable and confident in a variety of settings and have a great foundation for becoming a well-adjusted adult dog. After your puppy has had the proper vaccinations, you can start to introduce it to a variety of different dogs and people in safe settings.

      Which dog training method is best?

      The best type of dog training for both you and your dog depends on the outcomes you hope to achieve. If you want your dog to learn agility training, go to someone who specializes in those techniques. Regardless of whether you want your dog to learn basic behavior or competitive-level tricks, the majority of dog training is actually about training the owner how to communicate with their dog. Most professional dog trainers agree that a model of training based on positive reinforcement breeds a happy, healthy, well-adjusted dog. The alternative to positive reinforcement training is using force or aggression techniques like physical punishment or shock-collar training to get the dog to do (or not do) a behavior. While the dog may learn how to behavior as you direct, it is also learning to communicate with force and aggression, and will in turn use those behaviors on other dogs (or people) that are smaller or weaker than it is. Before signing up with a dog trainer, meet with the trainer and ask for references. Watch the trainer interact with your dog, and make sure they treat your dog with patience and firm kindness. Ask them questions about their training methods:

      • What type of training methods do you use?
      • What is your background and training, and how did you become a dog trainer?
      • How long do you expect that we will work together before we achieve the results I’m after?

      How long does it take to train a puppy?

      Dog training depends on the dog and how much homework the dog owner is willing to put in. Puppy training is similar to dog training in that the onus of the work depends on the owner learning new ways to interact with their dog. For a quick crash course, you can opt for a single, two hour smart-start puppy training consultation to teach you the ins and outs of being a new dog parent. You can learn how to manage potty training and what to do if the puppy experiences separation anxiety. As long as you’re willing to work on dog training a little bit each day, your puppy will quickly learn these new behaviors. If you’re not confident about training your puppy yourself, you can enroll in a 6- to 8-week puppy training course, with weekly lessons touching on everything from bite control to obedience. Puppies usually need to be at least three months old for group training classes. If you want more intensive one-on-one work, you can opt for private lessons. Some behavior problems can be resolved in one session if the dog owner learns and can implement new skills. In the case of more serious issues, 3 to 10 private sessions can typically correct challenges.