Private Dog Training

Let good dog behavior begin!

Whatever your dog is doing (or not doing!), we’ll bring relief with a training plan customized to fit your Reno lifestyle.

Put an end to frustrating behaviors like barking, jumping, and pulling on leash

Provide relief from serious issues like aggression toward family, guests, or strangers

Stop the embarrassing barking, lunging, and growling at other dogs

We’ll teach you how to train your dog, or choose our Easy Button program and we’ll do it for you.

The Easy Button Dog Training Solution

Ever wish a professional dog trainer would just train your dog for you?
Maybe you don’t have time for dog training, or you’ve got to get training done fast, or you’re worried about doing it wrong, or you just plain don’t want to learn to train your dog. No worries. We’ve got your easy button.

The perfect fit for busy Reno and Sparks professionals, families, and retirees, our Easy Button Solution is designed to do the heavy lifting for you.

We pick your dog up, train him at home or wherever you need better behavior, and then transfer our training results to you. You can watch us train, or go about your regular schedule. Think of it as board & train without the stressful (and expensive) boarding part.

Easy Button Program Details

Private Dog Training

Learn how to train your dog for real-life results
If you’ve got some time and interest, we’ll teach you how to train your dog like a pro. Using dog and people-friendly positive reinforcement training techniques, we’ll show you how to stop the naughty, increase the good, and get your dog calmly focused on you.

Private Dog Training Details

“The trainer’s work with us has been life changing…”

“Gypsy had separation anxiety and issues with other dogs. After five weeks of training Gypsy can walk by other dogs on a path without freak outs, and also walk side-by-side with a dog friend. At home she no longer panics when we leave. Joanna’s work with us has been life changing, we are forever grateful.” – Gypsy’s mom Jen, condensed from her Yelp review

FAQ: Private Dog Training

Do you guarantee your training?
No. Be wary of trainers who guarantee dog training results. Behavior is fluid and ever changing, and your dog is not a furry computer that can be reprogrammed. The success of any dog training program depends on many factors, many of which can’t be ethically placed under a guarantee. As members of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, Pet Professional Guild, and Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers, we have pledged our dedication to a better approach to training.

What we can, and do, guarantee:

  • a commitment to the latest and most sound methods offered by the scientific community, as well as ongoing continuing education
  • a commitment to humane, gentle and fun training
  • Customized training plans that fit your lifestyle
  • A kind, gentle and productive professional relationship (meaning that we will treat you, the human, with the same kindness, understanding and respect with which we treat your pets.)

Do I need classes or individual training?

This is ultimately a personal choice. Classes offer you a convenient way to practice with your dog around distractions, and allow you to meet other dog owners and compare notes and stories. Private training is more costly, but achieves faster and often better results. If your dog has a particular type of behavior problem (like aggression), private lessons may be your only option – contact us to discuss it, at (775) 420-2322.

What do you think of the Dog Whisperer/Dog Daddy/[insert hypermasculine, intensely charismatic celebrity trainer of the day here]?
We think it’s fantastic that they’ve brought so much awareness to pet owners about the possibilities of dog training – gone are the days when the family pet had to be relinquished or euthanized because he had behavior problems. Gone are the days when it was acceptable to tie a dog up in the yard instead of train it. These celebrity trainers have taught dog owners that there’s hope out there, and that it takes work, but improvement is possible! They’ve also brought awareness to the plague of both homeless, and loved (but grossly under-exercised and under-stimulated) dogs in our society, which is wonderful.

However, our methods are fundamentally different from theirs. We need to shift our focus away from simple dominance hierarchies in considering animal behavior. Dogs are socially complex animals, and contrary to popular myth, they don’t spend all their time trying to figure out how to usurp their humans or other dogs! Consequently, physical shows of punishment do nothing but damage a dog-human relationship. They make for suspenseful and entertaining video, but terrible dog training practices. Knowledge is power. The more you know about how dogs truly learn, the more tools you have for enhancing your relationship with your dog, and the less force or punishment you need to use. Have a look at these position statements from the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior for some reading on different dog training styles.

Is my dog too old to train?
There’s no such thing! Dogs of any age can learn whatever you wish to teach. In fact, sometimes more mature dogs are easier to train because they have less energy! Whether you have an 8-week-old puppy or a 10-year-old shelter dog, the outcome of training depends on many factors, none of which include age.

Do you use food in your dog training?
Yes! Food is what behavior professionals call a “primary reinforcer;” that is, it’s something that is rewarding, or pleasurable, in and of itself, because it is necessary for survival. For us land mammals, those things include food, sleep, sex, air and water. Out of that list, food is obviously the easiest to manipulate to our advantage (and let’s face it, if we asked most dogs, they’d be pleased to be offered food). Food is also instant gratification for your dog. It’s not by any means the only positive reinforcement tool used in dog training, but it’s often the easiest and most powerful.

Won’t my dog need food forever, then?
Generally not. Once a dog has mastered a behavior thoroughly, food is no longer necessary (but I’m sure it’s greatly appreciated!) To be quite blunt, if you need to use food every time you want your dog to behave, you’re doing it wrong! Have a look at this excellent article, written by Dr. Ian Dunbar, world renowned animal behaviorist: Food Critics

My dog doesn’t like food. Can he still be trained?
Yes. Some dogs aren’t born immediately inhaling everything you put in front of their nose; that’s OK (and beneficial in some ways!) The important idea is to understand what’s making your dog tick. Contact us for more information; this is not an insurmountable problem and it doesn’t mean that a dog training class won’t work; it just requires thinking out of the box a little!

Why don’t you use choke, shock or prong collars in your training?
Because there’s a better way. When you induce pain or discomfort (such as a choking sensation) in an animal, you increase anxiety and frustration. That’s how it works – the animal learns to change their behavior to avoid the yucky sensation. Anxiety and frustration in dogs can tip over easily into fear and aggression. This is not a sound way to train a dog, any more than it’s a sound way to train a giraffe or a lion! It is much safer (and more pleasant for the dog and owner alike) to avoid these tools as much as possible, especially since better ways have been proven faster and more effective. Increasingly, studies are showing that aggressive or aversive dog training methods can breed aggression in dogs.

Meet the Fur & Feather Works training team

We love dog training. We love teaching. And we believe in being the best at both.

Questions about private dog training?