Blessings on you!"
NOTE: we have regular content on our Instagram, Facebook and YouTube for updated videos and progress on the dogs we are training.
We found Ruff Beginnings Rehab through the Westside German Shepherd Alumni Facebook Group. Bethany, the lead trainer, came highly recommended by a German Shepherd owner. We immediately contacted Bethany and quickly realized how much her philosophy matched our vision for Brezel. She emphasized that creating a calm dog was key to their behavioral success. She explained that her program utilizes an e-collar to help send clear and direct messages to the dog. We decided we wanted to send Brezel for boarding training, and Bethany recommended a three-week program, which included four private training sessions throughout the process. Our goal was to help Brezel control her reactivity and to have her be able to walk side by side with Schnitzel, so one person could easily walk them both.
Bethany’s care for our dogs was apparent throughout this entire process. Along with the weekly updates that she sent, she posted either a video or photos of Brezel’s progress almost daily. Not only did this ease our worries, but it served as a great training tool for us. We could go back, rewatch the videos, and better comprehend the different tools and exercises.
Many people asked me, “Won’t you miss her?” or “Aren’t you worried she thinks you abandoned her?” While these were thoughts that I had, I focused on the fact that Brezel would get the support and training she needed, which Scott and I were not able to provide for her in the last year. As dog “parents”, I didn’t think it was fair to expect her to control her fear-based behavior when Scott and I did not have the right tools to help her. Now that we have the tools and skills, I am confident that we can guide her to be a calm and happy dog. Bethany gave Brezel exactly what she needed, while holding her to very high expectations, and we hope to sustain that work. While we missed Brezel and she missed us, we knew it was the right thing to do because it was better for Brezel in the long run.
If you are interested in training your dog, check out Ruff Beginnings Rehab and Training. Bethany truly understands dogs and expertly adjusts to dog needs while holding them to high behavioral expectations. Scott and I understand that sending Brezel for three weeks won’t solve all of her problems and that we must be committed to holding her accountable after her return home. Bethany set the foundation for success, and we will do everything in our power to continue it!
Jagger and Joey
We rescued an EXTREMELY insecure, year-and-a-half-old Australian cattle dog; one we figure had a rough beginning to his life. Jagger was very scared: of people, of other dogs, of sounds. He warmed to us quickly, but every time there would be a noise outside of our apartment, every time the doorbell would ring (either for real or on television) he would go nuts. Jagger has a thunderous bark, which he would unleash on anything that came into his “territory.” When people would approach Jagger, he would snap at them, sadly catching a few people on the hands and legs. One time he tore a man’s jeans open.
Bethany curbed ALL OF THIS with a Board & Train with Jagger. We went out of town for the holidays, and left Jagger with Bethany, and when we got him back after being gone for a week, he was MUCH more clam and comfortable. He no longer barks at the door. He no longer “pulls” when we walk him. He is such a powerful dog that prior to Bethany’s training, my fiancée Katie had trouble walking him he was so wild. My arms and shoulders would hurt after a walk with Jagger, he was “leading” and “pulling” so much. This has STOPPED.
Jagger had such high-energy; he would constantly run around the house, jumping on beds and furniture, namely the couch. He respects boundaries and “human things” now, after working with Bethany. He will wait in a sitting position until he is invited onto things; we never thought this would be possible.
Bethany’s work has been INVALUABLE to our family. She worked a miracle on Jagger. He enjoys life so much more now, and after going through what he has in his young life, he has so much more confidence and security thanks to Bethany. She not only helped Jagger, but our other dog, Joey, as well.
But the greatest help Bethany provided was to US. We never knew how “crazy” we were living before, or how much better and easier everything could be, for all’s sake. Bethany gave us the tools necessary to be confident and better “dog parents.” The tools we have learned have helped us so much as well. Her training REALLY works!
Troy & Katie
Some of what is in the videos below was also included in the transformation video of them.
First of all, I'd like to say that we have a 5 year old Pocket Pit that Bethany trained when she was a puppy and she is the most well behaved Pit Bull you could ever imagine.. A true lady! The good behavior is engrained in her, so of course when we rescued our new 1 1/2 year old Pit Bull from the West La Shelter, with no training or manners, rather than give up (like my family wanted me to) I called Bethany in hopes that she is still training, and low and behold, she was! As much as I hated to see him leave, he has come back a new dog. Believe me when I tell you, it's like investing in a stock that continues to pay dividends for the rest of your life! She wont leave you high and dry either, if you have any questions or concerns after the fact, she will be there for you.. She is truly amazing, loves what she does, and is really a good person :)
-The video above is on Comet's walking transformation in one session!
-Below Comet comes in at time stamp 6:15.
"We decided to foster a 9 week old puppy. He was just too
cute to let go :) so we kept him. He had the tendency to bite, not just because he was a pup teething, but he was a little aggressive.
We heard about Bethany from volunteering at a rescue. We had her come to our house for private training after some group class basics. She explained the dynamic between Comet (the pup) and our other dogs. We worked on him individually and also with the pack. Bethany and Maxine are not just about the "training." They are acutely aware of the surroundings and how everyone interacts. They work with all the dynamics and how to achieve success with everyone.
We loved Bethany and Maxine so much we decided to schedule a
Girl Scout training workshop with them at Pet Orphans. They taught the girls basic obedience dog training, First Aid and CPR for dogs, dog "signals," learning how dogs think, and being a
responsible pet owner. They also provided handouts on doggie language and space etiquette.
We look forward to working with them again and would highly recommend them."
I walked with Rugby the last couple of days. It was so nice! He walked calmly and almost all of it was right by my side with a loose leash. We did what you said and practiced in the front yard, and he settled down and we had a great walk. The buzzer from the gate that usually freaked him out was cool, he did try to bolt out the gate when I opened it, but I blocked him and made him wait as I walked out backwards and stood out there. Then he came when I called him and we had a perfectly nice walk. Thank you for helping!
I took sugar bear out for a separate walk so she would be happy and she did great, ignored other dogs and acted very happy. I think I might be able to walk both of them eventually together, I'll keep taking them separately for a couple weeks or out as a family group. Both of them have been happily tired out. :)
I just wanted to thank you for your guidance with Rugby especially, I was so happy to be able to easily take him for a walk. He is smarter than I thought, and he loves going for walks!
"I have two dogs that have VERY different personalities.
One was "leash aggressive" super hyper on walks and the other is scared of his own shadow. But walking them had become so difficult, that I just basically stopped. I would take
them out to the yard to do business and then I was done.
We had tried a few trainers in the past, and I'm just not a big fan of certain types of training. I have no issue correcting my dogs, or being the boss, but some wouldn't even let me have my 8 lbs dogs sit on my lap, or wanted me to kick them out of bed. My dogs are rescues, and each has issues, but I don't think changing everything about their lives is needed when what I want to change is their leash behavior.
Along came Bethany, and she gave us the perfect mix of positive and negative reinforcement while letting me know that some rules were not negotiable if I wanted to see improvement. Working through their issues. Bethany felt (and I believe was correct) that my "leash aggressive" dog was trying to protect my scared dog, since he was once attacked by another dog on a walk. Obviously, in my dog's mind I was unable to protect the pack, so it was her job. Which I had reinforced by not wanting to walk them. So we worked on it, and she is so much better. I can walk my dog and I am not scared that she is going to fight or get out of control on her walks.
Fast forward a year later and I am fostering a people "aggressive" dog. I had no idea how to deal with this. My dogs may have been bad on walks, but I had never had a dog that I couldn't even touch without fear of being bitten. It was so stressful.
The founder of the rescue and I didn't know what to do with this dog. We started researching options with rescues that work with aggressive dogs, because we did not have the resources or the training to deal with this. Not to mention that we not only couldn't adopt him out in this state, but I didn't feel safe with him in my home! I reached out to Bethany for help. She gave me tips to help the behavior in person and over the phone, and you would not believe how fast this dog responded! In one week we went from I'm terrified to touch this dog, to he wants to sit on my lap!!! This was not a case of a dog who needed to decompress, I gave him time to do that, this was a dog who had some serious issues. Working with Bethany and using her training tips for 6-7 weeks, and we were able to adopt this dog out!!!! His new family is going to continue his training and the strict protocols given his issues, but the difference is unreal. It's like Bethany got inside his head! I swear she knows what dogs are thinking!
So I can enjoy my dogs again, and that I can live with!!!! Thank you for all your hard work Bethany!"
"Where to even begin.. Bethany and her team are the
I had a very unique/difficult situation going on with my two dogs. They were living in North Hollywood with my grandfather for a while after I gave birth to my son. My grandpa is the kind of guy who thinks if dogs have a yard then they're fine, no need to walk them or let them sleep in the house (crazy, right?!?)
Fast forward to when Bethany and her team came into the picture, she was very understanding of my situation and comforted me in the fact that I was doing the best I could during a tough time. She really took the time to assess the dogs and our situation thoroughly. By the time I was able to hire her, the dogs hadn't been walked in 6 months!! Let me tell you, these dogs were not easy to walk. After being cooped up for so long and on top of the fact that they are big and strong - Bethany was able to handle them both at the same time! She made sure they minded their manners and wouldn't allow them to pull her down the street!
I could see a huge difference in their overall demeanor. She went above and beyond any of my expectations by not only helping me figure out a way to pay that worked with my budget, but as well as helping me devise a plan to fully integrate the dogs back to my house and introducing them to the baby. You can tell that she really cares about her clients and its not at all just about the money. I truly can't say enough good things about Bethany and her team!!"
"I'm the "mom" of a 65lb Boxer/Lab/Pitbull mix. Unfortunately,
due to poor training on my behalf, his temperament (energy of a boxer, cuddliness of a lab, and protectiveness of a pit bull), and our small apartment; Dexter had become quite the
I did what any self respecting dog owner would do: resorted to Yelp! I found Bethany on here and called her immediately to schedule an appointment for our free hour long consultation (which ended up being more like a two hour long consultation...still free).
She came into my home and immediately began to asses Dex. I felt like we were on an episode of the Dog Whisperer. Bethany asked lots of questions and actually listened to my answers. I never felt rushed, I never felt unheard, and I always felt that she had mine and my dog's best interests in mind.
Not once did I get the feeling that Bethany was in it for the money. After our initial consultation she came back several times over a period of a few weeks (but only when needed). She emailed me in the weeks we weren't meeting, just to check on our progress and provide additional personalized training tips. I always felt like the lines of communication were open and that no question was too simple for Bethany. Every time I emailed or called she quickly responded with very helpful information.
Dexter responded very well to the techniques outlined by Bethany and within a matter of a few weeks, he was a different dog. Over a year later Dex and I have an ENTIRELY renewed relationship. I feel equipped to handle him and he now respects my lead. In a short time, I saw changes that made me a believer in Bethany's ability to teach others how to best care for and train their pets.
My favorite part about Bethany's technique is that I felt like both me and my dog were students. Other dog trainers came in, worked their magic, and left with me completely unable to reenact what they'd done. Bethany, however, would teach me a technique and then train me to implement it with my dog. She is firm, but very gentle and great at what she does. You'd be crazy to go elsewhere for your dog's needs."
"Bethany and Maxine are two amazing trainers!! My husband
and I signed up for their 6 week training class for dogs 6 months and up. It's been a couple weeks since our last class and I have to admit I miss it. They created a fun and
successful learning environment not only for our new family member, Lemmy, but also for US! We were shocked at how quickly Lemmy picked up tricks and how easy they made it for us to train
Most significant was how helpful they were outside the class as well. We had noticed that Lemmy was experiencing some separation anxiety and Bethany suggested I bring his crate to class the next week. During the week she provided me with materials, videos, and the name of a great book to read. After class she stayed with me for 1 hour to show me crate training techniques and now after 2 weeks, Lemmy is a different dog! He use to fear the crate and would never go in without us picking him up. Now I can say "crate" and he goes right in and lays down. We're working on phasing out the crate eventually and if I need ANY further advise, I'm going straight to Bethany. We're still emailing back and forth and I am so grateful that she came to our rescue. It was breaking my heart to see my dog in such a panic and her training turned things around in a matter of days. We could not be more grateful for the additional time spent with our family.
Thank you so much Bethany and Maxine!! I will refer everyone to you both!"
"We sent our golden retriever puppy, Winnie, to stay with Bethany Wilson and it was money well spent. Bethany was able to provide a foundation for training Winnie that was easy to keep up with when she arrived back home. Prior to her week with Bethany we were having a lot of problems with nipping, attacking her food as we would place it down for her, walking on a leash, and jumping up on people. Bethany sent us numerous updates via email and video so we could see how our puppy was doing throughout her week long stay. When Winnie came home these behaviors were much improved. Like any puppy consistency is key and sometimes we have to go back to the basics with her, but Bethany is always available to call and offer advice. She even came for a follow up session with Winnie where we worked on more leash training and what to do when visitors come over. I highly recommend Bethany to anyone who needs some help with their fur baby."
"We had an anxious puppy that grew into an anxious and
whimpering dog -- barking at nothing, jumping on guests, oversized reactions to our comings and goings and a doorbell response that went on and on.
After years of this I finally hit a wall and called Bethany. The results were nothing short of amazing. With very little effort and beginning with the very first session our dog was changed.
She is now relaxed and casual when we come and go -- has a one or two note half-bark with the doorbell and then calms down immediately, and best of all, no jumping!
It's now a pleasure to have guests and random deliveries -- and, most importantly the dog is so much happier and calmer now that she understands who is in charge and responsible....
"Bethany and Maxine are absolutely amazing dog
I've had a rescue dog for a few months (he's about 1.5 yrs old), and he is scared of many things -- loud traffic, strangers, other dogs -- not to mention he's become territorial in our apartment (barking at people who enter), and he is incredibly needy (attached to my hip). Before Bethany, we worked with another trainer who was all about establishing dominance, and my guy left that session very unhappy --- and he remained unhappy as we tried to use just those dominance techniques.
But Bethany understood my dog much better, and she got him behaving INCREDIBLY well and responding quickly to everything she taught him. Throughout the session with Bethany, my guy was smiling and happy even when she was taking him onto busy streets with strangers and dogs. Bethany also taught him great door etiquette. She gave me and my boyfriend all the guidelines and exercises we need to re-enforce what she taught my dog (and us) -- from what we should do at home... to when we're on walks... to when we have people over.
Overall, Bethany did a spectacular job and brought out the best in our dog. We can't wait to work on everything she showed us -- already it's obvious that Bethany's techniques make him happier and more confident."
"I've had many dogs and been to many dog classes, but the class
I did with Bethany and Maxine was the best I've ever done. Not only did our big pup, Buffy, learn a lot, but I really appreciated how efficiently our time was used - every minute was made to
matter and I really felt like I not only got more than my money's worth but that my time was valued. They are so good with the dogs. Frankly, they are tougher with people than they are with dogs
because dogs just want to be good and we're the ones who screw them up! LOL
Our pup seems pretty sharp, but she's very willful and they helped us with that. We also brought them over for couple private session to deal with some specific behavioral issues and they were great, spent more time with us than promised and left us with a clear "action plan."
I recommend Bethany and Maxine to anyone who wants either a group class or private training."
"I've been using Bethany and Chris to train my two dogs and have noticed a huge difference in my dogs behavior. They are much more calm and I can finally take them on a walk together without them attacking and barking at every dog they pass. Bethany and Chris have also pet-sit for me numerous times and I totally trust both of them. They truly love animals and I can't recommend them highly enough!"
"Thank you so much for this video! We took your advise about the gentle prong method and it was an amazing transformation. We never would have dreamed that we would use such a thing on a dog and for sure not a small dog. We now have calm enjoyable walks and a conversation with the leash. It was eye opening how gently it helped him to check his own behavior. As you promised we had a different dog in one day!
"Bethany was extremely generous to me in her time and advice,
even though I live outside of the region and contacted her through email. Her videos on YouTube are awesome (finally, so many questions answered before I can even ask them!), and
demonstrate what I think is the perfect balance of positive reinforcement and occasional corrections.
Bethany let me know that my puppy's bad behavior was a result of my smothering her :) Not something a new pet parent wants to hear, but a little tough love with me went a long way. I followed her suggestion of giving my pup a break for a few days, ignoring her except for structured exercise, playtime, and feeding, and took her advise on how to deal with my puppy's snarls. We also worked on crating, drop it and place. A couple of weeks later, my relationship with my pup is so improved! We're both happier. Thanks Bethany, you know your stuff!
If you live in the area and are lucky enough to have Bethany work with your pet, do it!"
"Bethany has provided some amazing advice and videos on training. Her crate training tips worked like a charm and I am now following her advice and videos for a pup that is biting. Thanks again for taking the time to answer my questions and go the extra mile by providing vidoes."