It occurs to me that Joey (the magnificent) and I have taken several courses with Mary over the past 18 months or so. I’ve honestly lost count but know that we’ve participated in 5 or 6, including Hollywood Tricks, Hollywood Tricks II, Backyard Agility, Doggie Come Here (Right Now, Please), and Professional Handling for Everyday Obedience. We’ve also attended at least one of the Tune Up Sessions for Dog Aggressive Dogs. It’s hard to believe how far we’ve come – in very large part, thanks to Mary’s knowledge, insight, patience and tremendous kindness.
When I brought Joe home from the “pound”, I had no idea of his former life other than that he had been left at the shelter, covered in sores. He was incredibly skittish when we first met, so terrified to come near me that I wondered whether we would ever bond and if, perhaps, he was not the right dog for me. In response to my specific questioning, I was told that he was “fine” with other people and dogs. I took a chance and brought him home, only to watch his fear turn to aggression – never with me but with every person and animal he encountered. I had no idea what to do. Thankfully, I found Mary. It has taken time and my sweet Joey is still a work in progress (aren’t we all?) but the improvement in his reaction to strangers, both 4 and 2 legged, is nothing less than astounding. He has learned to focus on me, sit, lie down and does so in trying times (such as when cars or people pass by on our walks). His behavior and his demeanor have improved significantly.
Honestly, he used to be constantly on edge and on alert, afraid of everything and looking for a fight. That has all changed. No kidding! Friends and neighbors, on several occasions, have asked if the well-behaved dog with me is the same dog they met last year. It has been so gratifying to watch him become more relaxed and, quite literally, happy. I am immensely grateful for Mary’s continuing assistance and encouragement. Thanks to her, things have really turned around for Joe and, by extension, for me. I would recommend Mary, highly and without reservation, to anyone who wants help with addressing any dog issue!
Judy E. from Baltimore County, MD
Associate Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist
Elite Fear Free Certified Professional
Montgomery County, MD
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