Last weekend's puppy social was held at Bass Pro Shop. Dolce and Auggie were learning to be calm in a busy environment. We are helping them to relax with a soothing massage. Who wants a dog that is calm in public places? Everyone!!! Great work Dolce and Auggie!❤ ... See MoreSee Less
Meet Auggie. Auggie's human called me saying that I was her last hope. Auggie was suffering from a severe case of thunder phobia. One time his human came home during a thunderstorm to find Auggie inside the washing machine! He was also damaging the house, hurting himself, breaking out of crates and deficating while inside the crate. It was very traumatic for both Auggie and his owner. Auggie, his human and I put in a lot of hard work. Together, we succeeded in overcoming Auggie's thunder phobia. His human reports that Auggie has done well the last two times that it has rained. Yay, Auggie!! ... See MoreSee Less
We had a wonderful time at the Leon County Human Society's Caturday Night Fever event. The best part being that all the funds raised will go to help more homeless animals. Way to go LCHS!!! ... See MoreSee Less
Puppy social! Dolce and Auggie are practicing being clam when people, children and bikes go by. That's not easy for many adult dogs, but they did fantastic!! Did mention that Auggie is only 16 weeks old? Notice that both dogs are using their noses to investigate what is passing by. This is exactly how they should be responding. Dogs gather 60% of their information through their nose. In addition to practicing good behaviors, they are getting exposed to new sights and sounds, which is so important for puppies. This helps them to grow up to be more confident. Thanks to their humans' commitment, Dolce and Auggie are on their way to becoming balanced, happy and fulfilled dogs. ... See MoreSee Less
Meet Skylar. I recently received an update on her progress. This update touched me, because it shows the love and devotion of Skylar's humans. Skylar was a very nervous dog that would act in an aggressive way to get people away from her. She even bit someone. While this got her humans very upset and concerned, they never gave up on her. Skylar had their complete support. The road to helping dogs become calm and balanced is not always an easy one, as this update points out. But, it can be very rewarding watching your dog grow and blossom. ❤
"We’ve got a long way to go before we find her chanting Om in a lotus pose, but Skylar has made great progress in her journey to calm. She reliably and docilely sits both waiting for and riding in the elevator. When surprised by strangers there or elsewhere, she’ll may give a short couple of barks, but nothing like the lengthy barking and lunging tirades she engaged in before. When we go into the back yard in Tallahassee, she doesn’t pace on alert the whole time; increasingly she stretches then lies down in the grass closing her eyes against the afternoon sun and breathing in the world. During the last four weeks - due to Hurricane Dorian among other things - Skylar has had to deal with more than a dozen houseguests and visitors. It was unavoidable chaos at times, but Skylar, having been given the chance to meet the interlopers on her own terms, accepted them far sooner than we expected, presenting them toys to play with and resting her head on their knees with a soulful, ‘pet me’ gaze that melted everyone in the room. We’re still finding our way, but you have been a real savior. Thanks for your help!" ... See MoreSee Less
One of the best reviews I can receive is from the dog. Meet Lulu. The first picture was one taken by her humans before training. They said that she always had kind of a concerned look on her face whenever they took pictures of her. The second picture was taken at the end of our third and final training session. Look at Lulu's face! She finally looks happy. That is the best complement I can get. By the way, Lulu's humans called because Lulu was nipping and getting aggressive with other humans. She now comes over to me to get affection!!!! Thanks Lulu. ❤ ... See MoreSee Less
After being missing for more than 2 years, Bailey's original owners saw her photo posted on the Leon County Humane Society's adoption page! I'm so happy for Bailey and her family.Meet sweet Bailey. She is in the foster program at Leon County Humane Society. Bailey is always in an over excited state of mind. Because of this, she was not doing well at adoption events. She was releasing her excess energy in ways that were disruptive and potential adopters were passing on her. Baily's over excited state of mind was not her fault. It was all that she knew. I worked with her foster on ways to let Bailey release her excess energy in a more structured way. Structured exercise drains physical and mental energy in the same amount of time. Bailey's foster has reported that Bailey is working really hard on her new skills and improving. Our goal is to provide ample amounts of structured exercise, show Bailey how to calm down and be in a happier, more balanced state of mind. She will get there. Her foster and I will make sure. ... See MoreSee Less
Handsome Tanka is a rare breed called a Carolina Dog. Tanka competes in Confirmation. However, he was lunging and growling at other dogs in the competition. In the video, Tanka and his human are practicing walking by other dogs in a calm state of mind. When we first arrived, Tanka was in an over excited state of mind and was ignoring his owner. Within an hour, Tanka was calm, able to focus on his owner and learned how to walk nicely on the leash while around other dogs. This is the first time that Tanka and his human have practiced this and they both did an amazing job. Tanka had been to obedience class in the past, but his human could never get him to walk well on a leash. This was all done without treats, harsh corrections or commands. The beauty is in how dog and human are working together with mutual respect! #earnyourdogsrespect... See MoreSee Less
Dolce learned so much at my puppy social last weekend. We held this social at Home Depot. Dolce practiced sitting while people and carts went by him. This teaches him impulse control and good manners while out in public. He also investigated some objects that initially scared him. At first he wanted to run away from the objects and bark. If we would have left when he did this, he would have never gotten over his fear of these objects. He was so brave! When dogs get over a fear, it builds their confidence. That is why it is so important to expose puppies to many new objects, noices, environments, people and dogs. It helps them be more confident and have less fears when they grow into adulthood. Way to go Dolce! ... See MoreSee Less
Meet Chief, Butch and Remy. Chief (the black Lab mix) was showing aggression towards people. Chief's vet referred his human to me. It turns out that Chief is an insecure dog. He was also running up and down the fence line barking and growling at people and cars that drove by the house. Being an insecure dog and thinking that he was in charge of keeping all people out of his territory was not a good combination. This was attributing to his aggression. Chief's owners were hoping that they didn't need to put Chief down. Well, they no longer worry about that! Chief is doing great. He now knows that it is only his job to warn his humans of possible danger and that his humans will take it from there. Chief was skittish and lunged at me when we first met. He now comes up to me for affection. He is much more confident and secure. His humans even gave me these beautiful flowers and a card after our last session yesterday. I was so touched. A happy ending for all of us. ... See MoreSee Less
Meet Gunnar. Gotta love his pose!! Gunnar flunked out of a local obedience class. Basically, that means he got asked to leave the class. Gunnar was over excited, wouldn't listen to his human and would jump on other humans in the class. The obedience trainer was kind enough to refer Gunnar's human to me. Look at Gunner now after one training session. His human says that it's like she was a new dog. Gunnar's human is putting in the work and getting great results. Please don't get discouraged if your dog flunks out of an obedience class. There is still hope! ... See MoreSee Less
Meet Georgia. About a month and a half ago, Georgia's human was told by a vet that she should seriously consider euthanizing Georgia, because of her human aggression. The vet did give Georgia's human my information, in hopes that I could help. Georgia did fine with humans at doggie daycare. This told me that it was a relationship problem between Georgia and her human. Before training, Georgia would not let anyone in the house. Now people can come in without any problems. She can even walk in a park and not have any reactions to the people walking around her. We also worked on increasing Georgia's confidence. It took a couple tries to get Georgia to jump up on this rock. But once she got up there, she looked so confident! She even walked more confidently after being on the rock. Georgia's family loves her. They are so relieved that they are able to keep her in their lives. All their hard work payed off. Work hard for your dogs and you will get great rewards!! ... See MoreSee Less
Melissa has worked wonders with several rescue dogs for Big Dog Rescue, Leon Humane and the Leon Animal service Center. She has changed their status from unadoptable, possible euthanasia candidates into adopted dogs in wonderful homes. Melissa is the 'Real Deal'.
Melissa Wilkerson Peterson is are an amazing person and Trainer!!
This is a great success story. I just shared it. 😄❤️
Meet Thor. He is another one of the dogs rescued from Gadsden county dog fighting ring. I love this dog!!! He is so sweet, affectionate, friendly, gets along with other dogs and learns quickly. We worked on walking nicely on the leash today. He will be at the adoption event this Saturday at the Leon County Humane Society office. ... See MoreSee Less
Last weekend I got to work with some of the dogs rescued from the Gadsden county dog fighting ring and their incredible fosters. These dogs will be featured at a special adoption event next Saturday, September 7th at the Leon County Humane Society office. We'd love to see you there! ... See MoreSee Less
Winston came to my puppy social today! He attended my puppy class back in April. He is growing up to be such a handsome boy! All the puppies practiced walking and then had a great time playing. Remember to social your puppies in a safe controlled environment. They will thank you for it! ... See MoreSee Less
Meet Dolce. He is 5 months old. His awesome humans started him on private puppy classes one week after they adopted him. Dolce is doing so many good things in this video that I'd like to point out. We had been working on not bolting out the door for only 10 minutes when this video was taken. We were only asking for about half the distance he is giving from the door. He gave us all the rest of the space on his own, which shows a lot of respect to his humans. I also love how he is looking to humans for direction on what to do when the door opens. Again, showing trust and respect. Only 10 minutes ago, he was right at the door, bolting out and not paying attention, at all, to what his humans wanted. The final great thing that this video captures is that Dolce goes outside calmly. His humans were saying that he previously bolted out the door and started running around in an over excited state of mind, ignoring his humans when they spoke to him. Going outside in this calmer state of mind allows Dolce to focus better on his humans. All this was done without treats, spray bottles, etc. It was accomplished with clear communication. Initially, Dolce was a bit challenging. He is really doing well now. Way to go Dolce!!!!
Meet Duke. I was called to help Duke with his separation anxiety. Duke's humans had already tried two other local dog trainers, in an effort to help Duke, without success. He would destroy property in the home when his humans would leave. As a possible solution, Duke's owners had tried to leave him outside when he was home alone. The problem with that option was that Duke got scared when there were thunder storms and would then destroy property outside. The situation had become very stressful for both Duke and his humans. Interesting enough, Duke was not afraid of thunder storms when he was inside the house. When I arrived, one of my first questions was if Duke was crate trained. The owner's answer shocked me. She said that neither of the other two trainers could get Duke to go in a crate, nor would they "force" him because he didn't want to go inside the crate. I showed the owner how to get Duke to go in the crate without "force". He quickly accepted the crate. Duke has been practicing being in his crate and being separate from his humans. He is not stressed while in the crate and is practicing longer and longer time intervals in the crate. He is doing very well. A big thanks to his humans for not giving up on finding help for him. Now, both Duke and his humans are happy. ... See MoreSee Less