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Fairfax German Shepherd Trainers

Browse these german shepherd trainers with great ratings from Thumbtack customers in Fairfax.

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

We found out about Ryan when researching Northern VA dog trainers. We had a 6 month old German Shepherd and didn't know where to turn. To complicate things I was trying to also groom him to be a working dog which requires excellent obedience. After dropping a couple of hundred on a group class at Petco I feel we barely scratched the surface let alone had an obedient dog. Ryan offered exactly what we wanted. A reasonable intensive in-home solution that incorporated the whole family. Ryan was able to see how he interacts at home, on walks and we even go into public areas to increase socialization. After 6 weeks we have seen a dramatic change. K9 Sigmund is now even more prepared to start his career as a K9 SAR member thanks to Ryan.

Top Pro
Horse and Hound Wellness
5.0
from 52 reviews
  • 6 years in business
  • 90 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Tiffany D.
Verified review

Accommodated a last minute new client. Arrived on time. She was able to get our 5 month old German shepherd mix to start listening to commands right away and made sure we understood everything before she left. She even told us to call her if we had any questions. Will definitely be calling her for another session and will recommend to others!

  • 7 years in business
  • 69 hires on Thumbtack
Hilah K.
Verified review

We contacted Jerry to help us with difficulties our rescue senior German Shepherd was having adjusting to our newborn baby. So far we have had a wonderful experience working with Jerry and our dog loves him. Before we met with him in person we had several phone consultations which were incredibly helpful. Jerry is very professional, patient, and skilled in dog psychology. He conducted a thorough evaluation of our dog and current home situation. He spent a long time with us and we worked together to develop a personalized training plan that fit our family's needs. Thus far our dog has made measurable progress using the techniques Jerry has taught us and we now have many tools to continue with training on our own. Jerry has been readily available by phone, email, and text between sessions for additional consultation as needed. It is clear that Jerry loves what he does!

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.

Wag Ur Tail Dog Training
4.8
from 30 reviews
  • 2 years in business
  • 53 hires on Thumbtack
Susan M.
Verified review

I have been working with Mike Morrison of Wag Ur Tail Dog Training since the day we adopted our Shepherd/ Lab mix from the shelter. We saw great potential in the dog, but he had some destructive behaviors we could not deal with without a professional. We give Mike all the credit for helping us with our dog, who we can now take for walks and play with safely. Mike encouraged us and shared so much information about care, training and even feeding the dog. I highly recommend him for basic as well complicated behavioral training needs. It's money well spent to see my kids able to play with this great dog who needed our help to get along with people. Thanks Mike!

Top Pro
Paw Patrol of VA LLC
5.0
from 26 reviews
  • 3 years in business
  • 60 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Amira L.
Verified review

Vicky provided a professional, fun and effective training to my German Shepherd who was a real challenge to take out for walks. She was always on time, always cheerful and her training yielded results right away. Two thumbs up for a job well done Vicky!

  • 20 years in business
  • 13 hires on Thumbtack
Chris D.
Verified review

Mark walks our three dogs 3 to 5 weekdays each week for the past few years. He's reliable and very flexible. We often have to shift the schedule around and he just rolls with it. Our dogs love Mark and Mark loves our dogs. That's not hyperbole, it's the truth and one of them is a German Shepherd. Anyone who knows about German Shepherds knows that they don't give it away. They make you earn it. But she warmed up to Mark almost right away. We also have a Golden Retriever and a Cattle Dog mix and they all just think Mark is the cat's pajamas. My wife and I hold Mark in as high esteem as our dogs. I would recommend his services to anyone.

Citizen K9
5.0
from 17 reviews
  • 8 years in business
  • 11 hires on Thumbtack
Christina Jamie L.
Verified review

My husband and I would definitely recommend Andrew at Citizen K9 for boarding services. I had never left my doberman/shepherd puppy and left her for the first time for a few days with Citizen K9 over the summer. Great experience! They have a large fenced in yard for the dogs to play. They even sent pictures of her playing with the other dogs to me via text to let me know how she was doing. We have already made our next boarding appointment for a week in November! Thanks Andrew!

  • 33 years in business
  • 27 hires on Thumbtack
Rachel A.
Verified review

I just wrapped up the basic obedience course with my german shepherd mix, and she is a different dog! Chai was aggressive, impulsive, reactive, and terrified of kids. In our evaluation, she was barking and snarling at a stuffed dog in their office. By the end of of the training, she was happily following instructions in a group class of over 10 dogs. The biggest thing we're walking away with is the tools to succeed. I can't recommend Haywood and his staff highly enough, they're worth every penny.

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

Scott and Jen are fantastic trainers. The work they did with our 11mo. german shepherd during the 2week board and train program was amazing. Our dog did not come when called and was very reactive around other dogs. Lila is now a great companion who listens well and has more confidence. She is not reactive to dogs anymore which has transformed our walks and trips to the park. Their program and training really work - they are highly recommended!!

Dustin's Dog Training
5.0
from 11 reviews
  • 2 years in business
Christian R.
Verified review

Well let us start by saying that our Shiba Inu WAS quite the handful before we sent him to Dustin. We had no luck with training our Shiba Inu off leash and he only knew the "sit" and "paw" command. But, after picking him up after two weeks our Shiba Inu was a brand new dog he did AMAZING when we had a barbecue last weekend, so many distractions around, and he did amazing off-leash. I am glad I sent him to Dustin. Thanks man! We are going to send our German Shepherd next! (although she's not as bad).

Ask Dr. Caryn
5.0
from 10 reviews
  • 8 years in business
  • 15 hires on Thumbtack
Jody W.
Verified review

My husband and I - and our young male white shepherd - were beyond happy with Dr. Caryn's learning sessions at our house over six sessions of training. She was always clear about what she wanted us to accomplish with our puppy and worked hard to make it work for us. We believe that Dr. Caryn has set us on a path to continued learning for us with our shepherd, Harry. We plan to remain in communication with her and from time to time have follow up training sessions with her. We'd not have found her without Thumbtack. Thanks.

K-9 Kollege of Maryland
5.0
from 9 reviews
  • 22 years in business
  • 14 hires on Thumbtack
Igor V.
Verified review

If you are looking for the trainer who can make the impossible possible, Jack is your trainer. My dog Zeus (German Pinscher) was a vicious dog with multiple behavioral problems. We tried different trainers, but we thought things were hopeless. After losing all hope, we were at the point of returning Zeus back to his breeder, but we decided to give one last try and hired Jack. Thanks to his methodology and vast experience, we started to see changes almost immediately, after the very first class. His personal commitment and dedication to classes is also outstanding. He loves dogs (he has his own pack of 8), he loves teaching and he is just a very, very good person. Therefore, if you are looking not for just a dog trainer, but for a good one with a very positive personality and with broad experience, Jack is for you.

AmericanK9, LLC
5.0
from 8 reviews
  • 18 years in business
Jerome D.
Verified review

I was provided with an amazingly trained PTSD service dog. My PTSD took a turn for the worst and Krys and her staff stepped up and helped pair me with a German Shepherd Dog named Chief. Since getting Chief my life has gradually improved. I still have my bad days but I wouldn't be here to experience them had American K9 and Krys not stepped up and helped me.

  • 7 years in business
  • 3 hires on Thumbtack
Altie M.
Verified review

I am thankful for Melissa's help & guidence. It did a lot of good for my German Sheperd. She was afraid of other dogs. Melissa showed me how to correct her without making her feel the other dog was at fault & disliking them.

Tail Wags Canine Training
5.0
from 6 reviews
  • 6 years in business
  • 1 hire on Thumbtack
Kevin B.
Verified review

I had my Gretchen in for training and what a huge turn around it was. She is a German Shepard/ Black lab mix and she is doing amazing when it comes to commands.

K9 Cross Training
5.0
from 6 reviews
    Jim F.
    Verified review

    We were at our wit's end when we found Enrico Cross. We owned a German Shepherd but the introduction of another German Shepherd to the family was not going smoothly - I think the two of them would have tried to kill each other had they gotten together. After about three weeks of this, we were at the point where we were thinking of returning the newest dog when we decided to consult with Enrico and sign up for one of his classes. We had to take the two dogs in separate vehicles. In the span of one class session, Enrico had the two dogs side by side. He then taught us commands that every dog owner should know and a technique to make them stick. He also worked with us to keep us from transmitting our own bad "body language" to the dogs. Our two sheps eventually bonded so tight you would have thought they were from the same litter. I would recommend Enrico without any reservation and do so whenever i meet someone who has gotten a new dog. Don't waste your time with pet store training.

    PuppyLovin
    5.0
    from 6 reviews
    • 5 years in business
    Kenneth S.
    Verified review

    The owner of PuppyLovin, Julie, is one awesome dog trainer and a wonderful person. My wife and I have been taking our German Shepherd to her for training, boarding, and day care for about a year and a half now. She has really been a godsend when it comes to dog training. Without her training, assistance, and consultation, we would have had our hands full with our GSD. I highly recommend PuppyLovin for all three of the services stated above. Julie will cater her services to the needs of your dog and develope comprehensive plan for your pet.

    GTA Dog Training
    5.0
    from 2 reviews
    • 5 years in business
    Peg C.
    Verified review

    Felipe is a fabulous trainer! Altho he is only working with Koda, my German Shepherd, both my dogs just love him and are so excited to see him at the door. He has trained Koda to walk at my pace instead of pulling and chewing on the leash--very important for an 80-pound dog! I would recommend Felipe without reservation to anyone who needs help with dog-training or walking/exercising. He is the best!!

    • 1 hire on Thumbtack
    Greg G.
    Verified review

    That the Dude, over 100 pounds of German Shephard Dog, knows how to behave is attributable to Michelle Jackson's training. She taught me how to work with him, while giving him an opportunity for socialization with other dogs. He responds well to her, even after a long absence, and does all of his behaviors --sit, stay, come, down, etc. -- better after a session. I only wish we had started with her when he was a little puppy.

    K-9 Kids Training
    5.0
    from 2 reviews
    • 29 years in business
    • 3 hires on Thumbtack
    Tara R.
    Verified review

    I hired ms. Shindle to train my German Shepard and she was absolutely wonderful. She showed me new ways to train my dog and not only worked with me but was wonderful with my dog. It was amazing to see the way my dog reacted to her and listened to her from the moment she approached him. She also gave me exercises to work with him on without her present and it's like my dog is a completely different dog! If i ever have any questions in the future regarding any of my dogs I will defiantly be using Ms. Shindle and would recommend anyone having behavioral issues or that requires any type of training for their dogs contact her, she has even made herself available to me through talking to me and guiding me through things over the phone. My experience with this trainer was excellent. Thank you Ms. Shindle you have truly made our family a much happier place and I'm amazed at the difference in my dog since our session. Thank you!

    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.

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