Brittany and her staff at Ryker have worked miracles

My first experience with Ryker Dog Training came in August 2013 when I was looking for a class to take my new boxer puppy, JR. He was only ten or twelve weeks old at the time. Most trainers don’t accept puppies until they’re six months old. I knew from previous experience it’s important to get a new puppy socialized ASAP, so when I found Ryker accepted dogs two months old and up, I signed up for their puppy class as soon as the next class started. For the first two sessions, little JR hid under my chair and just watched the other puppies interact. But by week three, he ventured out from under the chair and began to play a little. By the end of the course, he was much more confident. Eventually JR and I took two more classes from Brittany, basic and intermediate obedience. Today, he shows no resemblance to that little scared puppy who hid under a chair! He goes to the dog park and plays with other dogs twice a week.

While JR’s training was great, the real reason I’m writing this is because of our little terrier mix Lila. We adopted Lila from a shelter in Oakland where my daughter, Carrie volunteers. Lila arrived with a horrible case of separation anxiety. She panicked whenever anyone left the house. She wasn’t crate trained. When I tried to train her, she literally broke both a wire and plastic crate in a panic to get out. She was a nightmare to take for a walk. She tugged at her leash and barked and growled at every dog and person she saw on the street or heard behind fences. Simply put, she was terrified about everything.

Today, Lila is a completely different dog. She goes for a walk with her dog brothers, JR and Elvis. Occasionally she will still react to other dogs while on her walk, but it is very manageable. I can take her to Lowes or OSH and she behaves perfectly. She rides in the car without a sound. She goes in her crate and can be left there for hours without issue, or, when our other two dogs are there with her, she sleeps on the couch until we return. And, most remarkable of all, she interacts with other dogs when I take her to doggie day care at Ryker twice a month. Honestly, I would never have believed this transformation possible, but Brittany and her staff at Ryker have worked miracles with her. If you have a reactive dog with even one of Lila’s former troubles, I would highly recommend taking the reactive dog class at Ryker. Dogs, just like people can change. Some just need a little extra help to get there.

-Connie