People and Dogs

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What People Say

2011, Scrappy, 2 year old Border Terrier: "I was at my wits end with my Border terrier scrappy, she was generally unruly and after showing aggression towards other dogs and then on one occasion a friends child I was ready to re-home/ have her put to sleep. It was breaking my heart and I was really at a loss as what to do next!!!

I contacted victoria as a last resort recommended by my vet, i was a bit sceptical at first thinking scrappy was beyond help and what else could be done to help a seemingly aggressive dog?!! But can honestly now say it was the best thing I could have done. Victoria first came to visit us at home, I found her friendly and she instantly put me at ease. She is very knowledgable, and was honest and truthful from the first visit that it would take a lot of hard work to train scrappy and improve her behaviour.

Scrappys main issues were due to a lack of socialisation from a young age, causing fear of dogs/ children. I had also spoilt her and had not given her any direction or training.

Victoria put a plan in place and after a visit out in the park around other dogs and children I was in awe at scrappys quick progress and how amazingly well she could behave around other dogs with the right guidance from victoria! To follow, another visit to the park after I had been following the plan for a few more weeks was near perfect, I was so proud of what we had achieved!

But it wasn't easy and there have been ups and downs, it was hard work at times and scrappy did and still does have good and bad days, but Victoria is always there if I ring in a panic or send emails with any issues we have faced. I cannot thank Victoria enough, I was ready to give up and part with scrappy.... But now I am better equipped scrappy is quickly becoming the perfect family dog I wanted, she is a million times happier and so am I.

So Thank you Victoria, we would highly recommend you with confidence Rachel and Scrappy xxx" Behaviour Therapy and 1-1 training from August to October 2011

Jack – Border Collie – now 20 months old and bought as a 12 week old puppy from a farm.

"I came across the People and Dogs website, and was impressed with the high level of specialist qualifications held by the proprietor, Victoria Cooper, as well as the promise to work with owners to solve aggression problems. I was also attracted by the fact that People and Dogs stated that they would undertake a full assessment into the aggression problems, as these were complicated and individual to each situation, and then develop a full and detailed plan of approaches to be used as a way forward.

I have to say that the professionalism and understanding offered by Victoria Cooper in helping us to resolve the aggression problems we were experiencing with Jack has been outstanding. Victoria was never judgemental or chastising of us, despite the fact that (as we learnt) we were the route cause of Jack’s aggression due to the ways in which we were treating him. Instead, Victoria helped us to see that the ‘Bah’ growling techniques, advised by a previous 'trainer' caused Jack to feel frightened of us, and that his growling was his way of getting us to keep our distance. To this end, we stopped using these aggressive confrontational techniques immediately and completely, replacing them initially with giving Jack a treat as we passed. We were also careful to avoid putting Jack in a position where he might feel trapped or cornered such as in our lobby near the back door. All commands were given in a confident and cheerful voice, and praise and/or treats given when Jack completed the command. These simple methods changed Jack’s behaviour overnight, and the growling completely disappeared. As time has gone on, Jack has become more and more relaxed around us, and is noticeably happier.

I cannot begin to express how grateful we are to Victoria Cooper for helping us to resolve Jack’s aggression problems, as we had reached a point where we couldn’t see how we could continue to keep him as we really felt that we had tried everything. I only wish that we had approached Victoria and People and Dogs in the first instance, and I certainly realise the importance of working with a fully qualified trainer rather than one of the many unqualified people who seem to think that they can offer expert guidance in this complex field. Both we and Jack have been very lucky in achieving a happy outcome, as without the help of People and Dogs, this could have been a very different and sad story!!" M.Sheardown and Jack the Border collie. Sheffield. Behaviour Therapy and 1-1 training. 2009/2010.

"Hi Vicky, I just wanted to give you an update on Sadie’s progress. Over the last month she’s coming on in leaps and bounds. She is becoming much calmer and seems to be really happy. She is now fabulous with the children, virtually no jumping up or mouthing. We have now been able to put the shoe rack back in the hall and she takes no interest in it whatsoever. The training classes are really paying off. We met two dogs in the woods this morning that are usually a nightmare to get her away from. I walked past them and called her on and she came! I Thought it was a fluke till we met them on the way back, called her again and she came.

It has been a really hard four months for all of us and there have been many times when Judith and I thought we’d made a big mistake in taking her on. Now we can see what a lovely family pet she is going to be. She’s a bright little thing and it seems that the more she learns, the happier she is.

Anyway I just wanted to say thanks to you and your team for helping this Barnsley stray to find her place in our family" Mr and Mrs Cook, Sheffield. Sadie. 2008 - 2009 Behaviour Modifcation, 1-1, Group training and Agility Workshop

"I can personally recommend this organisation! I have a very lively 3 year old Golden Retriever (Poppy, whom I simply adore!) I did puppy classes with Poppy (not with People & Dogs), then did another class for young dogs (with a 2nd dog trainer) and don’t get me wrong, they were ok. Poppy has a great temperament with people (esp children) and she would do the usual sit, stand, lie, stay. But for me the ‘basics’ were still not there – lead walking and recall. Until 6 months ago only myself and my Dad could walk Poppy – she was simply too strong and pulled like crazy. We spent hours and pounds (£££££££) on training with 3 different trainers using regular leads, haltis, harnesses – but to no success. I was even told by one trainer that Poppy will always be like this because she gets so excited to go out or on a walk!!! A friend recommended People & Dogs, and I reluctantly contacted them - it was very much a last resort. That was 6 months ago, and now Poppy walks beautifully on a loose lead – never, ever pulling. Her recall is now 100% consistent. Don’t get me wrong, it didn’t happen over night, and it required effort and commitment from me – but it has been totally worth it, and worth every penny. I think what impressed me most about People & Dogs was their exceptional knowledge and understanding about ‘dog behaviour’ – this was so evident with everything they taught me. I am in the process of looking for another dog/puppy – and as soon as I know when I will be getting one P& D will be the first people I contact. I have since recommended friends to People & Dogs and have heard nothing but 'good things' about them. Miss K Tute. Sheffield. Poppy Golden Retriever. 1-1, and group training, plus fun activties.2008 - 2009

" "We adopted Beany, a very nervous little rescue labrador cross, in July 2008. She was so timid at first that she would not come anywhere near us, let alone be stroked. She was terrified of everything - traffic, people, birds singing, rivers - the list went on. We contacted Vicky of People and Dogs and arranged Behaviour Therapy and some one-to-one sessions.
Since starting the sessions we have been utterly amazed at the transformation that has taken place in Beany in just a few weeks. Beany now loves being stroked, plays with toys, walks on and off the lead (& comes back when called) and happily travels in the car. We can't recommend People and Dogs highly enough." Mrs Blank - Sheffield. ( Beany - Behavour Therapy and 1-1 training)'08

"Dear Victoria

Thought we'd let you know all of us have enjoyed the classes and think Charlie has improved no end. It's obvious that we need to keep practicing and being consistent but already Charlie is behaving much better. The classes, hand outs and all the assistants have been brilliant. It has been worth every penny and we would recommend your classes to enyone" - Mr and Mrs Whetstone, Chesterfield. Charlie, 1-1 and Hooligan Hounds. '08

"We booked a course on recommendation from a friend, we loved learning about dog psychology, it was useful, comprehensive and appropriate to our needs. We know Shadow will continue to improve" Mrs Hulley, Chesterfield.(Shadow: Hooligan Hounds)

"We found the courses concise, easy to follow and structured according to our needs. We would recommend them to anyone wanting to understand their dog and improve its behaviour" Mr Conroy, Dronfield (Lucy: Puppy school, Bronze, Silver and Gold Good Citizen Scheme)

"Very good and informative" G & S Dickinson, Chesterfield (Holly - Puppy school)

" your courses are very well designed even down to diet and grooming, I loved learning about my dog and his behaviour in general... he has improved 100%. thank you." N Fry (Max: Hooligan Hounds)

" I think the courses are excellent. Cassie has become a dog that i can take anywhere. I really enjoyed the socialisation and psychology" K. Smith, Chesterfield. (Cassie: Puppy School and Bronze KC Good Citizen Dog)

"Guy has improved enourmously. I was so surprised that he achieved his Gold Good Citizen Dog Award. His confidence has increased so much around other dogs, it took a while but it was worth it. Best Wises to you and Thank you" Mrs R Kelly, Barlow, Dronfield. (Guy:Bronze, Silver and Gold Good Citizen Dog awards)

"I loved watching my dog respond to the kind methods and being educated into understanding how my dog ticks! the courses were excellent, I have enjoyed every lesson" S. Maude. Harthill, Sheffield. (Sky: Perfect Pooches and Bronze, Silver Good Citizen Dog Award)

"We would like to express our thanks to you for working with Penny and Jack, we are delighted with the progress the dogs have made with their new owners who are dedicated in supporting their greyhounds. Thank you." J. Morton Retired Greyhounds Trust - Midlands Branch.

"Both Ashley and I would like to thank you for your support and guidance during the last two dog training courses. Chloe has come a long way and although we know there is a long way to go yet, we are hopeful that she will end up a nicely trained and well adjusted dog" J.Abrahamson, Dronfield. (Chloe: Puppy School, Bronze Good Citizen Award)

"I just wanted to thank you and your team for an excellent course, we've all benefited from your expertise & your excellent approach - to both owners & dogs! We'll all continue to work on our behaviour : ) " A. Sorfleet, Beighton, Sheffield. (Amber: Behaviour Therapy, Perfect Pooches and 1-1 training)

"Many thanks for today – I feel reassured and empowered – let’s see if I can put it all into practice tomorrow!" A. Pecherek. Norton, Sheffield (Rebus: Behaviour and 1-1 Training)

"Dear Victoria, I am most grateful for your help, support and encouragement for myself and Islay in the classes. As you perheps noticed I did struggle at first and even considered giving up, but I carried on and began to enjoy them. Therefore many thanks to yourself and your staff for your help and support" Mrs Mason. (Islay: Hooligan Hounds)

"please pass on positive feedback on last week - I think continuing the training really helps to keep both me and Che working on everything we learned. Btw - I did want to pass on my thanks for the two courses, both were excelent and I think have contributed to a much more enjoyable dog owning experience. best alex" A. Nunn, Sheffield. (Che: Puppy School, Group walks, Perfect Pooches, Bronze & Silver KC Good Citizen Dog Award)

"Hi Victoria, Just thought I would send you a quick email to thank you for all your advice. I bought a 10m lead for Ned the Jack Russell and although it feels like I am playing skip rope with him sometimes he has really settled down when he sees other dogs. There is no barking or growling - that is if I can manage to ask the owner of the other dog first if they don't mind him going up to their dog and he seems quite calm. I have been rewarding him for this sort of behaviour as well. Thanks again for all your help." J. Jocumsen. Sheffield. (Ned: Behaviour)