We have seen our dogs gain the skills to become beloved family members

We started using The Calm K9 two years ago when we had a dog in our rescue who was nervous around other dogs, resulting in aggressive behavior. Two weeks later, we picked her up and Curtis did a two hour pickup session with us, highlighting what she had learned and how to continue the techniques he used in his home. We walked around the neighborhood, worked on using the “place” command inside of the home, and the do’s and don’ts of working with not just our dog, but our other dogs too. It was a wonderful learning experience, because even though we work with hundreds of dogs, we didn’t often think of situations from the dog’s perspective. Our rescue dog “Pepper”, immediately went into foster care and they were able to watch his training videos online anytime they needed a refresher course. She is now a happy dog who has neighborhood play dates with other dogs in her neighborhood. The Calm K-9 is the only program we have found that offers an in-home training program. The dogs don’t live in kennels there together, doing their training outside and then returning to kennels. They live in his home, learning their new skills there in a more realistic environment, surrounded by his very well trained dogs. This technique, coupled with Curtis’ skills and abilities have made a tremendous difference in the dogs we have sent there for training. We have sent 7 dogs total through Curtis’ training and we have seen them gain the skills to become beloved family members. One former fighting dog was extremely aggressive towards other dogs to the point that we kept him at least 15 feet from them at all times. He had never been in a home until he went to training there and he now has his very own family, living in perfect harmony with another male dog. This was something we doubted was even possible. It was these positive experiences with our rescue dogs that prompted me to take one of my personal dogs to Curtis a couple of months ago. A once happy-go-lucky puppy, he later developed fear, anxiety and confidence issues when he reached adulthood. It was hard to watch him struggle after these changes, becoming nervous around people, as well as other dogs which sometimes resulted in aggression. When I picked him up, we discussed the causes of his lack of confidence and fear.

At one point, my dog trotted into the other room and jumped on a tread mill. Apparently he enjoyed his tread mill time walks there, which helped him to work towards a calmer state of mind. Since returning, my dog and I have been in public many times, around both strangers and other dogs. He has done wonderfully in every situation. He is calm, confident and happy in situations that used to cause him severe stress. The key to success is following through with what is taught in the pickup session. Regardless of how effective his training methods are, the dogs will forget them over time once returning home if the owner’s don’t continue working with them. Dogs thrive on structure and having rules to follow which are set by their leaders. They need to feel confident their owner will make decisions so they do not have to worry. If there is no confidence in their leader, problem behaviors can and often do re-occur. Curtis has been absolutely wonderful at answering our follow up questions. He has a plethora of knowledge and real life experience which he is happy to use when we have questions, even after these dogs become adopted.

All of us here at Tennessee Death Row Dogs are so thankful to have someone of his caliber who can help the dogs we take in with severe behavioral issues.

-Jamie Hawkins

President/Founder of Tennessee Death Row Dogs