what our clients say about Howard Marks & Marlene Marks
Dog Training & Behavioral Therapist
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What our Clients are saying about us
I have only had 2 sessions with Marlene and Howard so far, but I've found that they are very sweet to my dog despite her stubbornness/ spazziness and have a solid understanding of what makes her anxious, badly-behaved, and sometimes aggressive. The exercises they've given me to work with my dog to establish my "in-chargeness" have been very helpful and I can see that my pup is more at ease around the home these days, even with visitors.HANNAH G., CHICAGO, IllinoisSeptember 14 2015
My experience with Bark Busters has been great. Marlene was so helpful with my Boston Terrier/Beagle mix, Ned, from the get-go. She answered any and all questions before I even wrote a check for services. She was honest about what I might need to provide for Ned, and was giving me advice over the phone before I had even committed! Ned has always been very comfortable with her when she has come to my apartment. We worked on issues for his separation anxiety right away, as well as little things like not jumping on the couch, walking on the leash correctly, and just making sure that Ned knew I was the one in charge. He is still improving and might never be perfectly content when I leave him. However, Marlene has given me some great advice for how to help Ned feel comfortable when I come and go that I can use for his whole life. He began with instantaneous barking, resisting going in a crate, destructive behaviors, and over-excitement when I would come home. Now he is much more comfortable with our routine, is able to remain calm when I let him out after work, and even my dog walker has noticed that his barking is minimal, if anything! I would recommend this service (and have to some of my friends with newly adopted dogs) to anyone that feels as though they themselves as well as their dogs need a confidence boost. My dog is much happier and less anxious knowing that I've got it all under control. While Ned is a very smart little guy, we definitely have benefited from Marlene and her quick-response advice and visits. Do not hesitate to just call and ask questions even if you are the slightest bit curious!Katie L., Evanston, IllinoisMarch 16 2015
As a first time dog owner, I wasn't sure what to think when my dog Doodles was panicking when I left her alone. She was suffering from separation anxiety and I wasn't sure how to help her. Howard and Marlene taught me how to help alleviate Doodles anxiety. She went from scratching at the door and breaking out of her crate, to being calm and content when left alone. In a matter of weeks there was a significant difference in my dog's behavior. Howard and Marlene also helped refine a few other skills, including leash walking, coming when called, and how to greet others. I would recommend Howard and Marlene to any dog owner. Thanks for all your help!Baylee R., Chicago, IllinoisMay 15 2014
I have a 10 year old ShibaInu named Foxy. Foxy had a severe phobia about wearing a collar and walking on a leash. He would freak out when you put a collar on him and he would not walk on a leash. My husband would carry him. Foxy weighs 45 lbs. We are moving to AZ and driving there with them. It became imperative that Foxy wear a collar and walk on a leash. I contacted Bark Busters because we failed miserably with Foxy. Thanks to Marlene's endless patience and expert guidance Foxy is wearing a collar and walking on a leash. I was walking my dogs and a neighbor commented on how well behaved they are. Thank you so much Marlene. Linda D., ChicagoLinda Davis, Chicago, IL, IllinoisMay 12 2013
Marlene and Howard are outstanding. I first sought their help about a year ago and my three dogs responded immediately (as did I) to the Marks' guidance, tools and techniques. Having recently moved to a new place, my dogs (me, too) needed a refresher in the new space. Once again, I was not disappointed. Our pack is back on track! I had tried several other trainers over the years, and Marlene and Howard are the only trainers who helped me achieve the results I wanted and needed.Anne-Marie St. Germaine, -Marie St. GermaineJanuary 2 2012
August 24 2015Howard Marks & Marlene Marks dealt with:
In a panic with a new puppy, I reached out to Marlene and Howard at Bark Busters, who responded to me immediately and with much support and guidance. They provided initial training, followed up with check-in phone calls, and, when I unfortunately had to bring my puppy back to the breeder due to lifestyle challenges, they listened to my concerns, offered sympathy and understanding, and were nice enough to provide me a full refund despite having already worked with me for several hours.
When I venture out to select a puppy again in the future, I will consult Marlene and Howard before I do anything else, and I will schedule our first meeting for my puppy's first week. They treated me with kindness, warmth, and respect, and I look forward to the day I get to work with them in training the puppy that is meant to be mine.
October 1 2014Howard Marks & Marlene Marks dealt with:
We have had only two lessons with our old English bulldog. Sadie is so cute but so stubborn. HOWARD & MARLENE have given us the tools to help Sadie become a well trained dog. After our 2 lessons Sadie is sitting and coming when she is called, not jumping as much as she did before, and is walking next to us when we take her one a walk. They also gave us advice on how to get her to stop nipping since she is teething and she is doing so much better. No more biting our ankles or hands. We still have a lot to do but I am so glad we have them standing right next to us. They are AWESOME and so caring for our little girl but with us as new owners!!!
March 12 2014Howard Marks & Marlene Marks dealt with:
Let me start with a brief description of my puppies; two adorable tyrants! My neighbor, excited with his results for his puppy, told me about Bark Busters. I called Bark Busters and left a message. Within minutes Marlene called back and was extremely helpful and professional. We agreed to meet at 11 AM on a Sunday... Marlene and Howard arrived 15 minutes early. They were wearing professional attire and display grace and friendliness. They arrived at my apartment with such manners, I felt like they were family. . They looked at my puppies and explained the program to me. As Howard was explaining the program, my puppy started chewing a piece of wood. Marlene said a command and the puppy stopped immediately (magic).
Not only I was impressed and I felt secure by Marlene and Howard, they only want me to provide the best life for my puppies. We did some training with the puppies and the results are amazing. The puppies are lovely, tender, respectful.
Thanks to Bark Busters. I can now see that through training, I can continue to have best friends for life. Marlene and Howard have a great way to explained the reality of a dog life! Highly recommended.
April 14 2012
We adopted a seven year old Glen of Imaal Terrier who had aggression issues and a Bark Busters collar. After many unpleasant walks, we called Marlene. She came to our home a few days later and started working with us. We have been pleased with the progress and have noticed a lot of improvement. We are very happy with the methods and the fact that we can call for advice when we need it. The policy that the previous owner's Lifetime Support could be passed on to us is wonderful!
August 23 2011
Marlene and Howard - Thank you so much for your time on Saturday and for sharing your techniques! Khloe is responding so well. Coming home tonight was a real pleasure and so NOT stressful! She's actually listening to Paul as well - which just was not happening before. We are really looking forward to your return trip!
July 24 2011
I absolutely felt like I had all the information I needed to keep up with the techniques. I never wanted to use a physical or negative training system. The training experience was very interesting, enjoyable and almost unbelievable as they became like different dogs: respectful and attentive. I have already recommended Bark Busters to the PAWS volunteers as a great way to train your adopted dog!
June 24 2011
Great, affordable training! Marlene and Howard were very fantastic and caring. They worked with our (sometimes moving) schedule to help transform our year-old anxious, howling shelter dog into a wonderful pet. We tried other obedience trainers but had little results. This program is very affordable, showed results immediately, and worth it. Thanks!
February 8 2011
Marlene and Howard: We practiced "attentiveness training" on our walk this morning. We're all falling into line very well. I am rather amazed at how Elvis & Kima snapped-to. Thanks for the refresher yesterday. We're off to a good start. Many thanks!
December 18 2010
We adopted our wonderful Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Cricket, when he was six. We were told in the adoption process that he was a "talker". They weren't kidding! He is a wonderful dog with a great temperament, but in some cases, he would start barking and not know when to stop. For example, when the door bell rang, he would go nuts, and not settle down until about ten minutes after the door had been answered. He was also very vocal about making sure we knew what he wanted and when he wanted it. After four years of life with Cricket, we found his "talking" habits growing worse and nothing seemed to help. After seeing Bark Busters in our neighborhood, we decided to give them a call and decided it was our Christmas present to ourselves. Wow! What a fantastic present. Marlene demonstrated pack leadership to us, and helped us work with Cricket on his barking and how to curb his inappropriate barking with the infamous "BAH". After only one day, it was clear that we had a different dog on our hands! It is amazing how much more we are in control and leading the pack, instead of Cricket. Thanks to Marlene's work, we are now the leader, and Cricket actually looks up to us. After her initial 2½ hour visit, Marlene made a follow-up visit, to ensure that all was well and to answer our questions. She then introduced some new techniques to us and helped us clarify what our goals for the training were. Through consistent use of the BAH and other techniques, Cricket is well on his way to being an even greater, more loving dog than he was before. We are surprised at how much of his personality is now shining through, since he is no longer trying to "muscle" us for leadership and barking so much. It is amazing how you can teach an old dog new tricks. Thanks, Marlene!
October 15 2010
We have a rescue pointer-mix, Gordon, who had been in a number of dog fights and had bitten a person in the five months we had him. Marlene and Howard's first visit calmed Gordon down noticeably. And that Marlene and Howard are now his trainers just took the pressure off and has given us the tools to keep him calm, to bond with us, to bit by bit teach him the behaviors that have yielded a beautiful, loving pet. Gordon almost seemed to sense the day he met them that all was now well. Many many small successes and steps keep building a better and better relationship between him and us and with our neighbors and their dogs. He's not a done deal, but we now know what to do. The Bark Busters program together with Marlene and Howard gave us hope and tangible progress when the week before they came, we had called the rescue org to return him. We have had no incidents with other dogs or with people since that day. He might still get excited but he has not gotten out of control because we correct him and guide him with positive methods so he knows what to do and believes we are in control. Though he still tests us a bit, the tests are becoming fewer. The walk is now a pleasure rather than such physical exertion the way it was before. We highly recommend Marlene and Howard for anyone who has a dog that needs training. Period. There is no abuse involved in their training methods. The methods are sound and sure and produce results and have from the first day.