We recently enlisted Tommy's assistance to help with training our 1 yr old pup and are writing to recommend him 100%. We had previously done group training classes with our puppy that he excelled at but were having more "advanced" issues specific to him. For context, he is a rescue from Puerto Rico and he's been at home with us since he was 2 months old. He loved other dogs too much, was scared of bicycles/scooters/anything on wheels, and was nervous passing people on walks, all of which resulted in out-of-control barking, lunging, etc. He also got to 50 lbs. so I was really struggling to control him physically, which was really dangerous for both of us. Lastly, he absolutely was not able to tolerate having guests over in the house when I was home alone with him and would bark and rush the door, and aggressively bark nonstop even when in his crate or a separate room. It got to the point where I dreaded our walks and was constantly tense, looking out for potential triggers. It was tough and embarrassing dealing with his freak outs and we were definitely the owner/dog pair that had to cross the street to avoid things he was fearful of or excited about. I similarly dreaded any time we did maintenance in the house, etc. because I could not have a conservation over the loud barking.
After much research and some over-the-phone consultations with different trainers, we decided to work with Tommy mainly due to the stellar reviews and his ability to come to our house and address problems specific to our dog in his home environment (where his issues were the worst). Within 5 minutes of walking through the door, Tommy was able to help our dog calm down, something that has NEVER happened before. In just the first visit Tommy covered almost all the problem behaviors on my extensive list. Tommy gave us explicit directions and training techniques with notes for practicing to help us stay on track. He was completely judgement-free and listened in-depth to all the scenarios and problems I described so he could tell us how to work on them. He really seemed to understand what my dog was feeling and why. He taught me how to get my dog to respond to me with little to no treats. Immediately after the first visit, I noticed a HUGE change. We had a follow-up visit to go over additional things like recall, coming to my husband when called, reviewing ways to set him up for success with leaving him home alone etc. and to get an assessment from Tommy on the progress we've made. Tommy is also very quick/responsive via email for follow-up questions.
From the first visit to the second, it's like we have a completely new dog. I joke that it's like he's had an exorcism- but really, it is! We are now able to have relaxed, long walks that are enjoyable for the both of us. We used to receive a lot of compliments from strangers commenting that our dog is handsome, but now we are able to receive compliments without our dog subsequently barking away said stranger. We also receive a lot more "I like your dog" compliments from small children (which our dog used to bark at). We even can pass dogs on the sidewalk that our dog used to lose his mind at. He has completely stopped pulling and we can have guests over with minimal reaction from him. He frequently "checks in" with us on walks/anytime we encounter something that used to set him off.
I had seen many other reviews that mentioned changes in the dog after the first visit. I was skeptical because I thought our dog was so out of control, it would surely take a few visits to see an improvement. I was wrong- Tommy really has the magic touch that has helped our family immensely.
Bark Busters dealt with Aggression, Barking, Jumping up, Other, Pulling, Recall, Separation anxiety