Training Philosophy

Hiring a trainer to help your dog improve their manners, learn obedience training, or curb problem behaviors is a big decision. At Tug Dogs, we take our trainer education seriously so that we can provide you and your dog with the absolute best training that is fun and highly effective.

How We Train Dogs

Customized Treatment Plans

One of the reasons Tug Dogs training has become so successful is that our trainers make the extra effort to fully design your dog’s training plan based on who your dog is, how they see the world around, and what your goals are.  Using a one size fits all training approach limits your dog’s ability to be successful and enjoy training. So instead, we listen carefully to what problems you are having with your dog and use our years of experience to assemble a plan to ensure your dog is getting exactly what he or she needs to be successful so that you are paying for only exactly what you need.

Comprehensive Training Approach

With 20+ years of collective experience in dog training, our trainers know what it takes to achieve lasting results with your dog. This is why we utilize a comprehensive training approach. But just what does that mean? It means that once we get to evaluate your dog we take the time to create a multi-step plan that ensures your dog is learning fundamental skills that will help him or her be successful in meeting your end goals. Too often, trainers rush dogs into situations without having properly prepared them causing behavior problems to worsen. By focusing on teaching your dog skills that will translate into stopping their problem behaviors, we create highly effective and fun treatment plans that really work!

Emphasis on Your Education

Dog training is really only half the battle when it comes to giving you the results you are looking for. The truth is, no matter how well we train your dog, ultimately it will be you who must maintain that training (otherwise you have wasted a lot of time and money)! Tug Dogs trainers are skilled not only in dog training but in the art of human training too. We work hard to ensure we give you clear, consistent, and easy to implement instructions so that long after training is over, your dog remembers what he or she has learned.

Back to Basics Relationship Reboot

You are the one who determines where your dog goes, who they meet, how they meet them, what toys they have, what they eat, how much exercise they get, what access to healthcare they have etc… You are a HUGE presence in your dog’s life and your relationship with your dog can either help or hurt your training success. To ensure that your dog gets the training he or she needs, Tug Dogs make sure we understand the dynamic between you and your dog and make easy to implement, helpful instructions on how to be your dog’s coach. A dog who is motivated to pay attention to their human’s guidance is a dog who is better behaved, able to handle tough situations more easily and is even more of a joy to live with.

Focus on Transforming Your Dog’s Experiences 

Too often dog trainers and dog owners focus on changing or controlling what a dog’s body is doing (like pulling on leash, barking, lunging, growling etc…). The truth is however that what your dog’s body is doing is simply a reflection of your dog’s mental and emotional state. Asking a dog to physically stop a behavior without addressing the reasons WHY your dog is acting out is a recipe for failure. This is why Tug Dogs training focuses heavily on changing how your dog sees and experiences the world around them. When we change how your dog is motivated, practice getting into a calm state, and ensure your dog feels mentally safe, the will stop engaging in all sorts of problem behaviors like barking, lunging, growling, jumping up etc…

Transparent and Open Communication

At Tug Dogs pride ourselves on being ethical, direct, and honest dog trainers. We are often dog trainers who are called in after owners have spent considerable time and money elsewhere without achieving training results. We know that’s frustrating and we take the extra steps of ensuring you get to know us, understand how we operate and have plenty of opportunities to ask questions. Tug Dogs trainers will inform you about every step of your dog’s training while taking the time to explain why we are suggesting certain training exercise and ensuring we have your informed approval of everything we are doing with your dog. We treat your dog the way we would want our own dogs treated (and yeah, our canine crew is pretty spoiled)!

Got Questions?

We love it when dog owners have questions! It is your responsibility to carefully research who you entrust your dog’s care to and we absolutely applaud you for taking the time to research about our training. During our free phone consultation for new clients, we are more than happy to answer whatever questions you might have so that we can determine if our training is the best fit for you and your dog.




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* Please Note: Tug Dogs is unable to provide re-homing services or requests for training outside of Northern California.