My dog, Hobbes who is a 2-year-old Husky/Golden Retriever, started having behavioral issues. He would bark at strangers, children, and dogs during our walks or while we were out in public. I had tried watching online videos on how to correct his behavior and nothing worked or stuck. So I decided I needed professional help and found Ralf at Happy Dog Training. Ralf explained the foundations of his program on how we would work with Hobbes, which was building confidence in him. We worked on building a strong basis of communication with each other that was repeatable and easy for Hobbes to recognize. Ralf's methods made it very easy to understand as he always explained why and how we were doing a training exercise. During every session, Ralf answered all my questions very thoroughly and I appreciated his patience as I had a lot of questions. I've had dogs my entire life, but throughout the training, I realized how much I didn't know about dogs. Not only was it training for Hobbes, but also, more importantly, training me. I was able to effectively communicate with Hobbes on what to do during training and in social situations. I saw immense progress that Hobbes went through each week. He went from barking at Ralf during our first meetup, to lay down in front of a coffee shop watching people walk past him. The change in behavior has been incredible for Hobbes and I'm very happy with the results. I will definitely recommend Ralf to my friends and family!"Philip H.,
Ralf was helpful and patient working with our little Cody. We found it fascinating how basic games turned into amazing ways to get Cody’s attention and distract him from events that would overly excite or stress him. Ralf’s methods were gentle and built confidence in Cody. Cody always looks forward to when we work with him using Ralf’s training tips. He especially loves seeing Ralf (the treat man). Thank you Ralf for all your wisdom and patience you displayed working with us in helping Cody to become a more confident and calm boy.Loretta and Bruce G.,
When my daughter decided to take in a stray blue heeler/ Australian Cattle-dog, I just didn’t have the heart to say no. She was very cute but probably had suffered abuse, was flea-infested, malnourished and in need of medical care.
We named her Foxy. Foxy obviously never lived inside a home before, she stayed in a corner where she felt safe. After about a month the issues started. She would bite strangers and did not do too well with our two other dogs. I was on the edge of giving up when I wrote a message to Ralf. He was very responsive, called me and we scheduled a meeting.
He diagnosed Foxy with insecurity and we signed up for training and it was the best thing we could have done. Foxy immediately liked Ralf (and so did our other dogs), she accepted his training and started progressing from the first session. We began with the basics and her confidence increased more and more each week. Ralf always made sure we knew how and what to practice in between sessions so we never felt left alone.
Ralf was THE solution - can’t thank him enough, he completely transformed Foxy and her life with us. Now, Foxy loves to work on the farm, go for runs around the neighborhood with my daughter, and learn new tricks.Lisa and Nina L.,
There aren’t enough stars to rate this amazing dog and dog owner trainer!!!
Horus is a very dominant/alpha dog, highly intelligent, but also very scared and lacking in confidence. A dog like this was not something I was equipped to handle. I needed help. Luckily, my friend referred me to Ralf. The first day we met Ralf, Horus took to him very right away (good sign) and I felt very comfortable and at ease around Ralf.
During all our training sessions, Ralf made sure to physically guide me through everything I needed to do, the rationale and science behind it, and prompted me to look over the website tutorials as well. The trifecta of training really instilled the lessons that I needed to teach my dog, and how I was going to do that. Not to mention, training was always fun because Ralf was easy to talk to and not just about dog training!
Months later and after 15 sessions with Ralf, Horus can go out in public and be around people, which wasn’t something we could do before. He is now very patient with my niece and even licks her and cuddles with her. When she is rambunctious, he either lays there as she plays around him, or he moves into another room when it becomes too much. I have had family and friends comment on how much better Horus has become, and they are shocked that he has progressed this much!
After training with Ralf, I have learned Horus’ physical markers that indicate when he is scared or stressed, and proactively work with him to prevent a negative response. The use of “ah-ah” and the cheese rain of distracting food still do the trick. The list of things that scare him is becoming much smaller since we started training with Ralf! Horus and I have continued to train, even after the end of our 15 sessions with Ralf. All the videos and blogs on the website have been immensely helpful for this. Horus is a new dog, I'm a better dog owner, and we couldn’t be happier!
Thank you Ralf for helping polish this diamond in the rough!
During one of the first training days, a stray dog attempted to mount Horus (which he didn’t like) so Horus went after the dog. Unfortunately, he slipped out of his collar and ran after this dog onto a very busy main street. Immediately, Ralf stepped in front of the oncoming traffic to ensure that Horus came back safely into our yard. At this moment I knew without a doubt that Ralf was an amazing trainer that would do anything for animals. He jumped in front of traffic for a dog that wasn’t his. Also, we promptly switched to the Leather Agitation Collar (2 inches) from Leerburg to avoid this situation from happening again (big neck, small head).
The next lesson learned was that my stressed reactions only made Horus worse. At one point, Ralf had me stand back and observe. When I was not in the picture, Horus was calm and didn’t even respond to the situation like he previously had. The dog owner also got a bit of training.Amanda D.,