The Good, the Bad & the Ugly

Husky-Nikita, Portie-Stitch, Beardie-Lucy, and terrier playing

Lori and Labradoodle-RowlfRowlf the Dog

Dear Dog's Den,

I just wanted to share my experience with you and especially your clients. "Rowlf the Dog", my exuberant Labradoodle, has attended two sessions of the Family Dog Manners class so far. I am amazed at what an improvement I have seen in him and the other students within only one week! The first class was full of extremely excited doggies, most of which were more interested in the scenery than paying attention to their masters. I was frustrated with how Rowlf behaved, to say the least. However, the atmosphere in the classroom this past week was totally different. The dogs were excited at first, but overall seemed much more relaxed and ready to focus. I couldn't believe that by halfway into the second class Rowlf was actually laying on the floor, quite calm, content and ready to learn! So, hang in there... you will see results!



Dear Barbara:

We are sending this letter to express our appreciation.  If you recall our family consists of two adults, a young toddler and our Australian shepherd Ozwald.  As a puppy, Oz was very well behaved and fit in well with other dogs and visitors to our horse back riding business on our acreage.  When Oz was six months old I returned to a desk job in town part-time.  He was left alone for 5-6 hours per day.  His behaviours deteriorated rapidly. He went from a sweet and loving companion to a dog who would growl and bark at others.  He was rough with other dogs and started soiling in the house.  He seldom ate and was very uptight.  These were things we had never seen with Oz before.  He was not adjusting well to my return to work and after two weeks we had to have Oz spend increasing amounts of time in his outside run as he could not be trusted in the house, with our son, nor when we had company.

We called Barbara  to assist us with his behaviours as we specialize in equines not canines!  After a week of intense training and behaviour modification, Oz came home with some new rules and suggestions for care.  Now two months later Oz is back to being the dog we know and love.  He appears happy and content, is appropriate with visitors and can play with our son when supervised.  He is currently enjoying agility class and shows great promise as a herding/stock dog. We would like to thank-you for giving us our friend and companion back, he is our sons' favorite playmate and a wonderful member of our family.  Your knowledge regarding dog behaviour has helped us immensely.  We also appreciated your follow-up phone calls and e-mails.  We look forward to many years as participants at the Dogs den training school.

Susan Van Dusen


Thank you! My husband and I had the pleasure of attending both of your recent sessions on group dog behaviour. Not only did you provide us with essential information about the social lives of dogs but you also did so in a highly effective and entertaining. Great public speaking skills!

At the first session, a number of dog interactions that we had witnessed in the past were finally explained and you also allayed many of our fears about allowing our dogs to interact with other dogs. At the second session that was held at the Cathy Lauritsen Memorial Off-Leash Dog Park we were able to witness and apply much of the information that you had relayed to us in the first session which was held at your training facility. I realized that after the first session, I was now more aware of the subtleties in dog behaviour when I witnessed a very fleeting bowing of the head of one dog and then the play behaviour that started immediately after. For nervous dog owners out there who are like me and get anxious at the thought of a dog-dog encounter, this was the perfect duo of sessions.

Indeed, we have actually started going to the off-leash park. OK, I admit that it is only at a very quiet time of the day and not with all three dogs at the same time but it means that our new dog, Mouse, has been finally able to run off-leash for the first time since we picked him up as a stray just over a year ago. Yes, we worked very, very hard on his recall on the flexi first as Barbara had suggested before letting him loose and the payoff was an attentive dog who still had a blast running and playing. Overall, we're delighted that all of the hard work we started with Barbara in Family Manners and Agility Fun has come to fruition with a happy, confident dog who no longer runs away. The off leash sessions were the final push that we needed to start making use of a wonderful dog facility whose existence was long overdue.

Katherine M. Robinson, Ph.D.


German short haired pointer/Great Pyrenees-Max sitting on grassWhen I decided that I was ready to own a dog, my first stop was the Regina Humane Society. On my first visit, I was taken with a shy but friendly German short haired pointer, Great Pyrenees mix, named Max. Max came into my family and my home after spending his first nine months a bit isolated on an acreage. As a result, he becomes agitated and nervous when encountering new things and when meeting new people. My goal is to give Max a real chance at being a happy, outgoing family dog, and not just a dog who is comfortable within his own territory. To accomplish this, I knew I would need a very competent and understanding trainer, and I found that trainer in Barbara Lloyd.

Barbara has provided important insight into what makes Max tick and is teaching the both of us how to help him be more confidant Max picking up frisbeeand social. Having a dog with issues can be a taxing experience, but Barbara has given me hope that Max can be the great family companion I know he can be. I've already seen him become more relaxed and attentive in her classes as he socializes with other dogs and their owners. Barbara's classes always have a feeling of personal instruction, tailored to the needs of your dog. There is no pressure on either you or your dog to be perfect; the classes are small and everyone is allowed the time to work through the exercises.

Max is continuing to grow and become more accustomed to his new environment. With Barbara's help, I'm sure that Max will continue on his path to being a happy, confident, well mannered, big city dog!

Leasa Gibbons