what dog owners say about Alex Fraser
Dog Training & Behavioral Therapist
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21st February 2014Alex Fraser dealt with:
Hemlock & Prue are both rescue dogs, who came into our home with some complex behavioural issues. We had managed to unpick a couple to the root cause, but didn't have the knowledge to understand how to deal with it. To be honest we were pretty much at breaking point with Hemlock, who being a large Dobermann just seemed to be so unwieldy and out of control. However within half an hour of meeting us with our dogs Alex had assured us that the dogs were not 'broken' and with time, patience and consistency we could 'fix' them ... or was it fix us? We soon learnt that their problems was as much our doing as their own 'baggage' they had bought with them to our home. Alex just seemed to be able to read deep inside their heads and reply to the cries of help.
Results were soon evident, the techniques easy to use (we have been known to use them automatically on the cats now, but they really do look at us as if we are strange). Before you realise you are doing many of the techniques without actually thinking about them, it becomes second nature. The dogs respond instantly to them, both the correction and the praise. They know where they stand, they are more comfortable having these boundaries and are so much calmer now.
Hemlock (dobie) wanted to guard us, Prue (boxer), the house, pretty much anything and everything, only thing is he was all bark and no b@lls and this just stressed him out. Alex soon had us teaching him that his 'job' is to sit n chill and we'll do the guarding: turns out our barks (growls) are pretty impressive too!
Prue was a bit different, she came to us with a history of more physical abuse (Hemlock's was primarily psychological). She was most un-boxer like, quiet and withdrawn. Together with Alex we have helped her realise that humans can be kind and she ought not to be so fearful of us all. She's a cheeky little lady now, has made some huge progress, but still lots to achieve. Prue's major issue was toilet training, she was used as a breeding bitch and as such had no concept of appropriate toileting. With Alex's guidance we have made a breakthrough but it is slow going, but we wont give up.
Both Hemlock & Prue were a nightmare on the lead, they would pull, and Beth wouldn't take Hemlock out unless he was on his canny collar because she didn't have the strength to hold him, or be able to cope with any silliness should he decide to go off on one. Alex taught us various lead and collar techniques and now both dogs walk beautifully with little correction needed. No nasty or painful techniques, just done by speaking the dog's language and plenty of praise when it all goes right (regardless of how fleeting that initial success may be). We are both happy to walk either dog and are looking forward to starting recall training with them very soon with Alex's help.
As a result we now have two contented and happy dogs who we feel we have a decent amount of control over. We are looking forward to advancing these skills. That's not to diminish the progress we have made so far. In the early days it would take 10 minutes to get Hemlock into his bed, he didn't see it as a safe place and once there would soon be off. Now, not only does he take himself off to his own bed, but also to Prue's (at least one size smaller than his own). He is so much more relaxed.
Alex is an affable man, who puts you at ease, is so easy to talk to without making you feel silly. Instructions are always clearly explained, as is the rationale behind them. Alex has become a welcome visitor to our house. Would we recommend him? Yes, we already have!
I am so so pleased with how both Hemlock and Prue have improved during the time I have been working with them. I was told by their owners on my first visit that they were at the end of their tether with both dogs (especially Hemlock who would bark throughout the night at the slightest noise!). On entering the house for the first time the dogs were a little chaotic to say the least, but whenever I go round now both dogs wait calmly in their beds when I enter and only come out when called! Their owners have worked hard and they are now certainly reaping the benefits of the work they have put in. I am very proud of them all.
Heywood, Greater Manchester (Testimonial)
20th February 2014Alex Fraser dealt with:
WITHIN MINUTES OF MEETING ALEX WE KNEW WE WERE IN SAFE AND CAPABLE HANDS. HE EXPLAINED EVERYTHING IN A CLEAR AND CONSIDERATE WAY, TOTALLY UNDERSTANDING OUR CONCERNS AND ADDRESSING OUR DOGS' NEEDS HOLISTICALLY.
WE HAVE SEEN IMMEDIATE IMPROVEMENT IN BOTH OUR DOGS' BEHAVIOUR, NOT JUST IN THEIR SIBLING RIVALRY, BUT IN THEIR GENERAL ATTITUDE AND DEMEANOUR. THE WHOLE FAMILY, INCLUDING THE DOGS, IS MUCH HAPPIER AND MORE RELAXED.
WE TOTALLY RECOMMEND ALEX AND BARK BUSTERS.
I really enjoyed working with these two bulldogs. It was however clear that the female thought she was not only in charge of her brother, but she also thought she was in charge of the house. It is really important in sibling rivalry cases that both dogs are viewed and treated equally and in turn they see their owner as a solid pack leader. The first session went really well and I can't wait to visit them again soon. Keep up the good work!
ROCHDALE, Greater Manchester (Testimonial)
1st February 2014Alex Fraser dealt with:
We were amazed, we had trainers before, they usually gave up on our Dobies or we refused to have them as they suggested methods like ear pinching or hitting them, or ignoring them in general unless we give commands (why would you have a pet and ignore it?). So Alex came and took his time, there was no rush, we had coffee while he observed how the dogs interacted with each other and us, sometimes he told us to give them a command and just watched how they responded and took his time to assess the character of each dog and their trigger points.
He spent 4 or 5 hours with us, part of it was inside training, we started a bit on outside training and lead training (our biggest problem) and I was surprised how well the dogs responded. All in all he kept it fun for the dogs and us, so my other half didn't even mind missing the Welsh Rugby game (and he is Welsh), and the dogs loved it as much as we did. We keep joking that the dog body snatcher was around and replaced our dogs with those obedient creatures.
Both dogs are rehomed and have issues as they went through several homes, I can't praise Alex enough for getting inside their heads and treating each dog the way it would respond the most, not the usual "one fits all" approach, but tailoring it to the needs of each dog, sussing out the communication between them, and what we thought were major problems and lots of work was really just minimal adjustments we had to make to communicate better with the dogs (and train the dogs versus the dogs training us). All in all, Alex possibly trained us more than the dogs, but that helps the dogs to understand the commands better. And as I said before, it was so much fun that we look forward to the next lesson, because it doesn't seem to be hard work but fun for us and the dogs.
After less than a day we don't have to chase them off the furniture, they understand they aren't allowed on it and happily settle in their beds, don't snatch treats but wait until they are told to take them.
The life long guarantee seems like a really good deal, as in the past we spent a lot more on trainers who eventually walked out or tried to use methods that seemed simply cruel (causing the animal pain if they refused to cooperate), Alex showed us that it's not just correction but also praise that counts, and yes, they do respond!
Doberman's are amazing dogs but quite strong willed and a bit overly sensitive, I think Alex achieved more in one afternoon than most trainers achieved in months. I haven't seen my dogs that happy and content without being exhausted myself, as Alex explained, it's important to stimulate brains and body.
I deliberately didn't clear the remains of our dinner but told the dogs no (along with the growl Alex showed us when they tried to sniff it), and we left it there and went to another room. Surprise, the dogs didn't take it (previously unheard of as they are skilled thieves and robbers).
I'm so looking forward to the next training session, Alex doesn't believe in breaking a dog's character or spirit (unlike our previous trainers) but working with it, to achieve the desired results. Our dogs are still their quirky selves, just much better behaved than they were. Since this is the result of just ONE session, I'm almost scared that the dogs will have much better manners than we do after a few sessions.
And yes, I would recommend him to anybody without reservations!
I couldn't have summed up what the training is about better myself, thank you. As with anything, you only get out what you put in, and you must also take credit, as success is also down to you and your hard work and dedication. All four of you are a pleasure to work with and I look forward to our next session.
Macclesfield, Cheshire (Testimonial)
31st January 2014Alex Fraser dealt with:
Alex was a real pleasant guy who appeared really interested in our issues with Marley. He asked lots of questions to get as much information as needed to help us help Marley.
He did not rush in anyway and was very methodical and explained in great detail all possible resolutions.
Alex offered us the opportunity to call him at any point to discuss any issues or to arrange any further visits to our home. Before he left he did an in depth re-cap of his visit to re-enforce his session.
He was an all round happy, enthusiastic guy and most importantly interested in helping us.
He is a total credit to Barkbusters
Marley's owners used Bark Busters around five years ago and they achieved great results. In the last 12 months however, following 2 new additions to their family, Marley started to demonstrate some frustrating behavioural traits. The 'Life Time Guarantee' meant that although I didn't carry out the initial sessions, I visited them at no further charge to help them with Marley. It is important to note how impressed I was with Marley's overall behaviour and the control his owners demonstrated. They did however need help with a couple of issues and I was delighted I was able to help.
Salford, Greater Manchester (Testimonial)
29th January 2014Alex Fraser dealt with:
From the first session with Alex, it's like we have a different puppy. We now use the techniques Alex taught us all and the passive leadership checklist is used daily. We can't wait for our next family session this weekend. Thank you Alex Fraser.
Woody was your typical boisterous English Bull Terrier and when I first met him he definitely thought he ruled the roost. What really pleased me about his family was that they all wanted to learn and work with Woody. It is really important that Woody identifies all 3 members of his family as solid pack leaders, so that he listens and does as he is told for all of them. It is therefore crucial that they are all consistent so that he doesn't receive any mixed messages. I honestly couldn't believe how much calmer he was when I returned for our second session and I look forward to see what further progress has been made when I visit them again. Keep up the good work.
whitworth, Rochdale, Lancashire (Testimonial)
28th January 2014Alex Fraser dealt with:
George is our first dog. He is a rescue dog and had really not had the best start in life. We didn't know where to start or how to deal with our new hyper active addition - especially when we tried to walk him. He would bark at absolutely everything. Alex was very sympathetic to our needs and was extremely supportive. He was honest about how much work we would need to put in to make George a happy and secure little dog, but as the weeks progressed we really started to see a difference. He very quickly stopped trying to dart out of the front door when somebody came to visit and his walking on the lead has really improved. We are so happy. Thank you Alex
George had some real behavioural issues which stemmed from the way he was treated during the first two years of his life. It was crucial that his family followed my instructions to the letter week in week out - and continue to do so. His behaviour quickly started to improve, but it is important to note that it can take months sometimes to reprogram a dog to make it realise where it sits in the family pack and to feel safe and secure at all times.
Whitefield, Greater Manchester (Testimonial)
20th January 2014Alex Fraser dealt with:
After just 1 session it was like I had a new dog! We still have a bit of work with the pulling but all in all in all a vast improvement. I cant wait for next session!!
There were definite visible signs of improvement after just a few hours which was great to see. Happy customer equals happy dog and vice-versa. The walking to heel using the Bark Buster collar (communication collar) went well. It takes practise to get the technique 'spot on' using this collar and lead, but once you get it right you will never lose it (and I will help you to get it right every time). I can't wait to go back and see how they are both getting on!
flixton, Cheshire (Testimonial)
14th December 2013Alex Fraser dealt with:
Fantastic. Belle our Border collie is a rescue dog all we know is she is approx. 18 months old and from Ireland. She was aggressive towards other dogs. After just two visits from Alex she is 90% calmer, beginning to walk to heel and no longer feels threatened by other dogs. Thanks Alex
This is a real success story and Belle has really landed on her feet. I was so pleased with how much calmer she was after just two weeks. She showed no aggression - even when a very boisterous Pointer thwacked her on her head. Clearly her owners have worked hard with her following my first visit - I'm chuffed to bits.
Eccles, Greater Manchester (Testimonial)
30th November 2013Alex Fraser dealt with:
Fantastic! Alex spent a good couple of hours on my puppy Chihauhaua. I learnt so much, this is the first time I have ever had a dog. I had a couple of issues with Eddie and wanted to nipped it in the bud. Alex reasured me on most of my issues, ie feeding, toilet training. I have more of an understanding of my little boy Eddie. We look forward to Alex doing some more of his magic on Eddie. Also a massive learning curb for me as well. I feel I have more of an understanding with Eddie.
I have been back to see Eddie and his owner a second time now and they are both doing really well. Eddie's owner is much more confident and has really bonded with her little man. This is one of the reasons why I get so much job satisfaction from puppy training sessions - especially when I work with first time owners. Like young children, dogs need some ground rules so that they grow up to be well-behaved adult dogs, and I can help owners achieve this. I look forward to meeting up with them both in the new year to do some lead work.
Manchester, Lancashire (Testimonial)
29th October 2013Alex Fraser dealt with:
Cosmo is a fun loving little boy and we like to encourage his curiosity and playful nature, so we didn't want an oppressive training which would knock the stuffing out of him. As he is a SBT, however, it is important for us to be in control as sadly SBTs have a poor and unjust reputation.
Alex explained a few simple techniques and taught us the way to make Cosmo see us as in charge and not himself!!! This was a break through and something which made complete sense to us. This allowed us to take the training on board easily and it felt intuitive once we started.
Alex himself is a star, he spent time understanding Cosmo and delivered training which he thought Cosmo would understand and respond to. It didn't feel like it was "one training fits all".
After only 2 visits we and Alex feel Cosmo has come on leaps and bounds but let's admit it now, it's John and I who have come on leaps and bounds really. We are now the pack leaders Cosmo needs so he can enjoy life understanding John and I are in control. I wonder if it will work on John too :o
Cosmo, like so many other SBTs I have worked with, is an absolute delight. It's been a pleasure to work with Cosmo and his owners, retaining all the fun, just building in the boundaries all dogs want and need to be happy, confident and well adjusted.
Job well done on your part guys. Cosmo is a shining example of a SBT that will do his breed proud.
Regarding partner training, I recommend my wife. ðŸ˜‰
Middlewich, Cheshire (Testimonial)