See what our clients have to say about our services and classes
I can not say enough great things about Spirit Ranch! From classes to doggie day out to dog sitting, we love it all!! The classes have transformed my Betty girl. The doggy day out service is exactly what we need during the week and she LOVES going. We’re always exciting for extra time with Sophie when I’m out of town. The owner has even helped us find the right food and supplements for Betty’s health needs. They truly love her just as much as I do and I wouldn’t trust anyone else with her! Love Love Love SR!!
Sarah Breshears ( Thursday 29th March, 2018 )
Great place and great Trainers! Had a private session with our daughter in loves service dog and our boxer! The service dog had a bad experience with another boxer and became upset around boxers! Since we had a boxer and visit them quite often, we needed to make sure they enjoyed each other and to make life a little easier when we would visit! So the Trainer thought it would help both dogs and ourselves out, if they trained together! She was so patient and kind with both of the dogs and taught us a lot! If you are looking for a great place to train your dog to obey or train your dog to be a Service Dog this is the place! Our dogs love to get together!
Brenda Layman ( Wednesday 7th March, 2018 )
I have always trained my own dogs but have struggled at having them behave on-leash around other dogs and large distractions. Spirit Ranch taught me how to desensitize my dog Baloo. I can take him almost anywhere dogs are allowed now while he remains calm but alert. Positive training has worked wonderfully for us and clicker training is a dream. I have signed up for the intermediate level course and will begin soon. Very excited.
Kristen Gunn ( Sunday 11th February, 2018 )
I highly recommend Spirit Ranch Dog Training! I am extremely chronically ill and this limits my mobility and quality of life significantly. We rescued my dog Charlie 4 years ago and took him to Spirit Ranch for a Service Dog temperament evaluation. We felt that the owner Amy was very honest with us about her initial impression of his strengths AND his weaknesses. We love Amy's honesty and insight with dogs. Spirit Ranch trains dogs AND their owners - sometimes the best thing we can do for our dogs is learn how to communicate with them, recognize their needs, understand their behavior and know how to respond. Charlie trained with Spirit Ranch for basic training classes, in-home privates, boot camp with Amy, his canine good citizen certification and became my mobility assistance service dog. I am forever thankful for Spirit Ranch!
Charlie flies on planes with me, stays in the hospital with me, goes to all my doctors' appointments, helps me walk with stability, picks up items for me, and keeps me safe. He watches me closely when I'm feeling bad and reminds me of my limits when he knows I need to rest. He's been with me to weddings, funerals, hotels, restaurants, church, and his favorite place - the movies. He even stood by my side on stage at the LuLaRoe national convention where I was a speaker.
Spirit Ranch trained Charlie AND me. They truly helped us to be the best team we can be. Charlie has 100% changed my life. He's given me independence, comfort, companionship, safety and so much more.
Charlie is about to do a second boot camp stay with Amy to add some additional tasks so he can help me even more. I love that there's always more we can learn from Spirit Ranch. I trust Amy and Spirit Ranch with my best friend and you can, too !
Alyssa Layman ( Wednesday 31st January, 2018 )
We are presently going here and we love it! Spirit uses respect and positive reinforcement as the primary motivators for training (at basic levels). We previously tried a competitor, & I didn’t like Tip Top because of the shock collar. My dogs didn’t understand why they were getting shocked (negative reinforcement) and ended up not wanting to do normal things like go outside because they affiliated being outside in their own backyard with training (getting shocked). If you have a praise or food motivated pup, and unless your dog is going to hurt themselves like run out in the street or chase cars, positive reinforcement and Spirit Ranch is absolutely the way to go.
We have also used Spirit Ranch for in-Home dog sitting while we’re out of town. With our 3 dogs, this is ideal. Spirit Ranch does background checks on all their sitters, & has a strict set of rules for them to abide by which management enforced with surprise visits. Before the sitter comes to stay, he/she will come by for an intro to make sure your pups know and are comfortable with them. Spirit Ranch also asks for a wealth of detailed instruction and health information, which I appreciate. I have the utmost confidence that Spirit Ranch prioritizes my pups’ safety and comfort and my peace of mind, above all else, in all things they do.
Carmela Spurlock ( Friday 26th January, 2018 )
Spirit Ranch has been a great experience for my husband and I with our new chocolate lab puppy. I had no experience with labs and our puppy was more than the usual energy crazed mutt. Layla loves life and everything in it and can't get enough. I thought we would have to drop group training due to her incredible zest for everything. It was quite difficult to restrain her without hurting her. The owner/trainer was quick with the gentle leader and how to use it and we were well on our way. Amy helped us over the weeks to understand her and work with her and give us the confidence to take her places. I highly recommend the awesome folks at Spirit Ranch!
Debbie Butler ( Wednesday 17th January, 2018 )
My aussie is skittish. While she is fun and very adorable to us, others do not get to see this side of her. She was not socialized, our fault. She is coming out of her shell. I will never have another dog and not take them to training. I'm a believer! Making my Zoey happy! I say do it, you won't believe what a difference it makes. I waited over a year going back and forth whether we should send her to training. Don't waste another minute thinking about, do it!
Wendi Slone ( Thursday 11th January, 2018 )
Both of our pups have been through Spirit Ranch's puppy and intermediate training. The staff are very knowledgeable and friendly. We leave our dogs in their doggy day care frequently for socialization. They've done a great job with training our dogs and answering our questions so we can continue to improve their skills. I would highly recommend Spirit Ranch.
Marty Smith ( Sunday 10th December, 2017 )
Spirit Ranch Dog Training is amazing! I can’t say enough good about the facility and the staff. We’ve used the boot camp, doggie day out, private lessons, obedience classes, and pet sitting. Their training methods are very effective, class sizes are kept fairly small, which allows for more personal attention, and if you later have questions, or need help with something, one of their staff is always available to help! The staff is caring and passionate about helping their customers and their dogs! Both of our dogs have received training here, and we wouldn’t go anyplace else.
Autumn Smith ( Sunday 10th December, 2017 )
I highly recommend Spirit Ranch and their dog training program. My German Shepherd was wild, easy distracted, loud and getting to be too much to handle. This class helped me understand my dog's behaviors as well as give me the techniques and tools to help her regulate her emotions. Within just a few classes she was able to respond to basic commands. Thank you so much to our trainer Megan for her patience and guidance through this amazing process and we can't wait to see you again as we continue into the intermediate class.
Lindsay Rucker ( Monday 16th October, 2017 )
We have had fantastic experiences with Spirit Ranch Professional Dog Training! Our golden doodle attended their 2-week boot camp over the summer. She loved her trainer and learned so much! We were very pleased with her ability to follow commands upon her return, and her trainer "trained" us upon her return so that she could retain what she learned.
Our doodle loves going there for "Doggy Day Out". She always runs in excited to be there.
She has been groomed twice there, and the groomer does a super job. She always asks what we want done, and delivers!
Amy, the owner has been extremely helpful with all of our questions regarding nutrition, toys, behaviors, etc. Highly recommend Spirit Ranch! All of the staff we have met are friendly and fun and their love of dogs is obvious. :)
Lisa Swords ( Tuesday 26th September, 2017 )
Great experience in the first class with my boxer mix! The trainers are awesome and very helpful. As a first time dog dad, i'd gladly recommend them. I'll be taking their intermediate class soon enough.
Kyle Liggans ( Wednesday 30th August, 2017 )
Spirit Ranch has given me and Chance the tools to succeed! It isn’t just that we have received high quality instruction but the trainers have truly been available for me as a resource throughout everything. I know that if I call them they will help me immediately with any questions or concerns that I may have about Chance. Chance has become 500x more confident and he has learned so so much since we began. I will forever be thankful for their help and we intend on taking many more classes from Spirit Ranch.
Brooke Randels ( Wednesday 23rd August, 2017 )
We are so grateful to Spirit Ranch for teaching us how to help our fur baby, Harley, overcome his fear and anxiety to become such a rock star (at least in our eyes). We came to Spirit Ranch because he refused to walk on a leash (among other things). Sophie was willing to give us advise, no strings attached, after listening to me vent for a good 15 mins. Harley’s almost done with the Basic class and we are so proud of him and how far he has come. I would highly recommend Amy and her staff of talented trainers to anyone looking for quality training. Spirit Ranch is not average…they are exceptional and love what they do!
Donna Jay ( Tuesday 1st August, 2017 )
I just wanted to share a story with you guys at Spirit Ranch! My dogs, Walter and Judy, took classes not long ago. Walter totally nuts when we started, but he came a long way! We have a friend and her dog staying with us right now, and she just said, "Emmy, if you could only be as good as Walter." Who would have ever thought we would hear that?!
Thanks so much, Trainer Sophie!
Christie ( Sunday 16th July, 2017 )
Amy, and the whole staff at Spirit Ranch, are beyond gifted with dog training and anything to do with dogs. I was very concerned about my German short hair pointer puppy being able to grasp the training, but Amy is so knowledgeable and experienced, that his training far exceeded anything I could have imagined. 2 thumbs way up. Anyone I know with a dog is hearing all about the awesomeness of spirit ranch. Highly recommended!
Talia Prideaux ( Wednesday 22nd February, 2017 )
Amazing, just amazing
Demi Telolet ( Sunday 25th December, 2016 )
2 years ago, I rescued Samson, and in that time I’ve learned a few things. I was always a ‘cat’ girl, so he has really opened my eyes to a lot of things. Here are the top 3 things I’ve learned:
1. Sometimes you gotta stop and smell the roses! As a former distance runner, my subconscious tells me that when you head out on a walk or run, the goal is to get from point A to point B in the shortest amount of time. I don’t even realize I’m doing it most of the time – but Sammy has brought that to my attention and forced me (sometimes literally) to learn that a walk can be just as good if you meander a bit and take your time.
2. Dog slobber (among other things) isn’t going to kill you. I am amazed at the things that come out of Sammy that I have to clean up! Let’s not get into gory details, but let’s just say I have a better understanding of how a mother can run toward their kid when they are throwing up instead of running the other way!
3. The love of a dog is remarkable. When I first rescued Sam, I had no intention of keeping him. I just wanted to get him out of the situation he was in and into a better one. I had been taking care of him for months in his horrible little pen before I was actually allowed to take him, and somehow he crawled into my heart. I used to pray for him every night that God would bring him a nice family who would love him and take care of him in the way he deserved to make up for his first 4 miserable years. Little did I realize that God was softening my heart toward him and when it came time, I couldn’t let him go! I remember the exact moment that I realized I actually loved him and couldn’t stand to have him go away!
So happy anniversary to me and Sammy, and to Paige who has been with us for most of the journey. And to my friend Lanee who helped me rescue him and kept him in her back yard for a couple of months before my yard was ready for him. Also a big thank you to Spirit Ranch dog training and especially my trainer Steven who taught me so much about dogs (and still takes my frantic calls and texts when I need him!) He is the joy in my day and I can’t imagine life without him!
Bridget Ballinger ( Wednesday 30th November, 2016 )
I HIGHLY recommend Spirit Ranch Dog Training for ANYONE who wants to attend a class, use the doggie daycare, or the Boot Camp. Our family personally did the beginners and intermediate Boot Camp for our dog, who is being trained as a service dog for our son. And next month, we will be doing the advanced class. Amy was our primary trainer, and we did work with Megan a few times, and they are both amazing, and all of their staff are extremely helpful and knowledgeable. Our dog came back after each bootcamp class very well-trained and then we followed up with the private lessons to teach us what she had learned while she was away. I am blown away at how much our puppy, now just five months old, has learned and retained, just since starting training at 11 weeks old. I can't thank them enough! Not only is she becoming an amazing service dog, she is such an awesome and well behaved pet at home!
Autumn & Marty Smith ( Friday 28th October, 2016 )
I would highly recommend Amy and her team for any of the services that Spirit Ranch provides. We have seen amazing results in our 4 dogs from boot camp, classes, and even doggy day out! Cannot say enough good things about this business!!
Elisabeth Akeman ( Friday 28th October, 2016 )
We adopted our wheaten terrier and within a year realized she had some anxiety-driven aggression issues. We were at a loss as to what to do as we love our dogs like our kids, and giving her away was not an option. We contacted Amy at Spirit Ranch and with a few sessions we have identified the problems, worked on our dog training "homework" and have seen incredible, steady, solid improvement in our home and with our sweet girl. I have worked with dogs and horses my entire adult life and I am the first to testify that there is always some new to learn, and a different perspective is ALWAYS helfpful. I can't stress enough how pleased we are with Spirit Ranch and how they have helped us restore "order" and "boundaries" in our home. All 3 of our dogs are happier and better for it!
Anna Krupka ( Friday 28th October, 2016 )
Our corgi Romeo had severe food aggression and moderate handler aggression when we contacted Spirit Ranch, as well as anxiety problems. Through a private session with Amyin learning who was the boss of the house and learning a new training regimen with the spray bottle for unwanted behaviors and spraying collar for aggressive behaviors, we have almost completely eliminated both aggressions and have seen improvements weekly. Our next step is a beginners course, in which we hope to see even more improvement in Romeo's behavior and consistency. We highly recommend Spirit Ranch and Amy, as they are the reason we are looking forward to a happy and friendly family dog!
Jenny Giovi ( Thursday 21st April, 2016 )
Our story began when we rescued our Doberman, Finn, from a shelter at the young age of approximately 10 months; we were smitten with his beauty and nobility from the first day. In the beginning, he was mild-mannered and well-behaved. However, after Finn recovered from kennel cough, he exhibited anxiety-provoked aggression toward other dogs (as well as a few humans) and became somewhat uncontrollable. After myriad and incessant attempts at training, my husband and I began to experience frustration. What we did not know at the time was that Finn most likely had been deeply and profoundly harmed in his early life; we did know he had been abandoned in a field to fend for himself as well as defend three smaller Dobermans against coyotes and the elements.
Upon exploration, we found Spirit Ranch. At the intake session, Amy gave us hope in regard to Finn being rehabilitated to the point where he could live and function as a well-behaved and happy member of our family. After much discourse and a little more time passing, we decided the best chance we could give Finn would be to enroll him in boot camp. Hence, he "went off" to live with and be trained by Josh. (I refer to him as St. Joshua with his gentle spirit; firm, yet munificent manner; high expectations; and respect for all things great and small!) In actuality, our Finn was transformed; he returned to us a much different dog...well trained with most of his anxiety-provoked anxiety ameliorated. Of course, we (mainly my husband) have continued to practice and maintain, on a daily basis, the good habits taught by Josh and Amy. It is axiomatic to declare they gave us hope and Finn the opportunity to live a good, meaningful, and long life by our side and as a member of our home. We are and will continue to be grateful and indebted.
Diane Bosworth, Ed.D. ( Thursday 14th January, 2016 )
My dog loves coming to Spirit Ranch and the staff are all very knowledgeable and friendly! I wouldn't go anywhere else!
Kylee Hayes ( Friday 16th October, 2015 )
It was my first time using a dog sitter from a company while I was on vacation. I will be honest, I was a little nervous. But upon arrival everything could not have been better. Dogs seemed to have a blast. My flight even got cancelled so I needed Cody to watch my dogs for an extra day and it was no issue. That was great for it was a very stressful day at the airport getting stuck. I would recommend this dog sitting service to everyone.
Mike McMahon ( Wednesday 19th August, 2015 )
When my husband and I adopted Callie, we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into. I simply was adopting her because my husband always wanted a female chocolate lab. I thought it would make a wonderful Valentine’s Day gift. I also wanted our other dog, Yadi, to have a sibling.
Lab Rescue told us that she had been used as a bait dog. I immediately started searching for a place to help her. Our veterinarian told us about Spirit Ranch. It was a blessing in disguise. Callie was so afraid of men, and still is to a point. But nothing like she was. She was aggressive towards them, before Amy meet up with us. Our first visit with our trainer Sarah was at Utica Square. Callie was so scared she hid from underneath the car. Sarah said we need to meet with Amy and that she was amazing at help dogs with PTSD and aggression issues like this. We couldn't see her ever being able to be in a class with other dogs and people. But Amy could and she has a way of giving you courage. Today we have a completely different dog. Now, our biggest problem is that she has so much energy she won’t sleep at night sometimes.
It has been amazing to watch the transformation from a malnourished, scared dog to a confident and healthy animal. I wouldn’t trade her for the world. I’m actually going to cry when she graduates from the beginner’s class in a few weeks. It will serve as an important milestone to show how if you work with a dog, you can change their behavior and their life. It also will be hard not going to the shop all the time and or calling staff to ask a question about something Callie has done. My husband and I are forever grateful for the staff at Spirit Ranch. Everyone one who works there not only loves their jobs, but they love our dog and we feel the love too. The things we have seen Amy and her Staff do for others is beyond anything you would ever think when you think of training your dog. Our lives are changed forever.
We love Spirit Ranch!!!!!! Callie LOVES Amy she can get her to do anything.
Lori Place ( Tuesday 19th May, 2015 )
Our journey with Spirit Ranch began when our labs were about 3 months old. We were connected with them after being attacked on a walk by a dog roaming our neighborhood. Murphy, our black lab, took the brunt of the attack; while Saaz, her sister, coward behind me through it all. After that, Murphy was not the same dog. She was frightened, scared & occasionally aggressive. So I did some research online and found Spirit Ranch. From our first encounter, Amy was completely engaged not only with our furry babies, but with us as well. After several emails, we signed the girls up for Puppy Classes with Sarah and started bringing them to Doggie Day Out. This changed everything! Murphy started acting like her old self and both girls loved all the social interaction. By the time the Puppy classes were completed we had two labs who were house trained, could sit, stay, lay down, walk on a leash without pulling, leave things they shouldn't mess with and drop things they should not have picked up. Oh to have a 4 month old lab DROP whatever no-no they had picked up on command!! Everyone we worked with at Spirit was exceptional - truly. Our girls are now a year old, have completed 3 classes and are currently taking their 4th! AND WE WILL BE BACK FOR ANOTHER ONE! Every person who meets them cannot believe how well behaved they are and we can take them anywhere because they act like ladies. Thanks to Amy, Sarah and Jennah, our dogs are not just pets; they are active members of our family who teach us just as much as we teach them. Thank you Spirit Ranch!!
Shelby Cain ( Saturday 7th February, 2015 )
A year ago we brought home this puppy and oh my Lord it has been one heck of a ride. We decided to get Jet a service dog to help facilitate social interaction with a verbal world and to help with balance support, but mostly to be a constant companion and an understanding and faithful companion. Donut was actually a gift from my mom. She was excited to see how Donut could help Jet. Before we got him we found just the right breeder and just the right trainer and read books. We thought we were ready for this black fur ball. But then life threw us a major curve ball and my mom passed away 1 week after we brought him home. Sometimes life just doesn't make sense.... All of a sudden I was dealing with severe depression and having to raise and train a very rambunctious puppy. Our trainers that we thought were the perfect fit, turned out to be a joke. I reached out to our breeders begging for some kind of help and their idea of help was taking him back. Made me so mad!!!!! And then like always, God provided the help we needed. And that help was Spirit Ranch. It makes me cry thinking about how far we have come. How very thankful I am for the dog that he is becoming. I am thankful for the role that he plays in our family. I am excited to see where we will be this time next year. Thanks mom for this puppy that is not only a faithful friend to Jet, but to the rest of the family too. I wish you were here to share it with us.
Lela Patton ( Saturday 17th January, 2015 )
Back in July of 2014, my begging and pleading for my husband to allow me to adopt an adorable little Aussiedoodle named "sweetie pie" came to fruition. Sweetie Pie soon was mine...all mine! The first moment of holding her will always resonate within my heart, she instantly knew that I was her human mommy and melted into my arms like a little teddy bear. We brought her home, changed her name to Jerzy Girl and began the process of implementing her into our home as a member of the pack. Whoa...it wasn't working like I had imagined. Jerzy Girl was an outcast by her new fur brothers, Boo & Chance. They were 13 years & 8 years old and were past the stage of life where they wanted to play or hassle with a pup! Jerzy was impossible to potty train. Just when I thought she was catching on...she'd pee in the house! My husband and I were beyond frustrated! We pride ourselves on having a clean smelling home free from animal urination or feces, but now...it seemed like our house was becoming a port-a-potty for our new puppy. I enrolled us into a puppy class at a local pet store hoping that they could give me some guidance. I was sorely disappointed in the training that I received for $120.00; we learned a few commands but no help on her potty training or her anxiety that was developing with other humans. Frustrated and at my wits end, I reach out to my sister-in-law, Debbie Baab, for advice. She shared her experience with Spirit Ranch and urged me to contact Amy Vaughn stating that she would do a free in-home evaluation.
I waste zero time calling Amy. She asked several questions over the phone and then told me that due to my puppy's breed being one of high intellect, the problem wasn't that my puppy wasn't housebroke especially since she rings the bell and goes outside to pee. She said it must be a problem with the other dogs. To make a long story short, Amy came out free of charge and observed our dogs within our home. She immediately saw the problem...Jerzy was scared of Boo, my 13 year old Lhasa Apso. Amy spent nearly an hour with us, giving great tools and information of how to remedy this. No obligation to buy anything; all of this was totally free advice. My husband and I instantly chose to sign Jerzy up for a private class. We did 4 one hour classes with Amy working on the basic commands and socialization in public. Wow...did we see a different puppy! We were believers in Amy Vaughn and Spirit Ranch! We immediately go from private classes to a Group Puppy Class with Trainer Jennah. It was amazing the difference between this class and the “puppy class” we received at the local pet store. The price was comparable, but the skills and techniques we learned were worlds apart. Jerzy was now not only potty trained and coping with the other fur babies in our home, but she was learning so much in our group class. I was pumped at our girl’s progress and decided I wanted to give Jerzy a major jump start by signing her up for Boot Camp with trainer Stephen Wood. The hardest part of Boot Camp was being away from my baby for 19 days, but Stephen made it bearable by sending me daily pictures and updates regarding her progress. I was blown away by all that he taught Jerzy within a relatively short time. Following Boot Camp Stephen began doing four 1 hour private sessions in our home to teach us what he had taught Jerzy…now we’re playing catch up to Jerzy! Stephen’s patience and his gentle spirit as he taught us what to do with our now highly trained dog was so appreciated. If I have a question regarding something he taught Jerzy and tried to teach me, he’s a text message or phone call away. He never makes me feel bad for bothering him. Amy Vaughn is the same way; she’s always a text message or phone call away. Calling Spirit Ranch made my life and the life of my fur baby SO much better.
When I was a young girl I spent months in the hospital recovering from an automobile accident. My friends eventually stopped coming to see me and my life was pretty dim. I remember counting down the days when the Therapy Dog Buster would be coming to see me. That moment has stuck with me for years and I’ve often wondered if I would ever have the opportunity to give back by having my own Therapy Dog. Thanks to Spirit Ranch my mission to have my own Therapeutic Dog has been realized. Jerzy Girl is in the process of training for this rewarding job and will make a child's stay in the hospital or talking to a counselor at the Children's Advocacy Center a little more bearable.
Everywhere I go I sing the praises of Spirit Ranch and what they have done for my family. Knowledge is power and now that that I have the knowledge of what Spirit Ranch can do for dogs, I would never have a dog that wasn’t trained through Spirit Ranch. Thank you, Amy, Sarah, Stephen, Jennah, and the rest of the Spirit Ranch Trainers for your professionalism and expertise! I’m a lifelong customer!
Mindie Baab ( Tuesday 6th January, 2015 )
Our testimonial about our experience at Spirit Ranch is not about dog training. While our trainers Amy and Sarah are excellent dog trainers, I would rather tell you about the kind of “people trainers” they are! Amy is overseeing every aspect of training our Newfoundland/Lab mix puppy Gale to be an Autism Service Dog for our fourteen year old son Marshall. We met Amy when Gale was just barely three months old. From that first meeting on, she has treated Marshall as an integral part of Gale’s training. Although Gale is being trained to respond to me as his master, she has done a remarkable job of finding ways to help strengthen the bond between Marshall and Gale. She and Sarah both talk to Marshall on a level that he understands, I think it is their gentle spirits that make them so good with animals that Marshall responds to. Amy is firm with me about trusting Gale to use the skills he is being taught- and even got me to sit back and relax as she led my autistic kid around her shop with a 90 pound puppy attached to his waist with an umbilical leash!
I have been amazed at how much Gale has learned in all the classes we have taken so far, and can’t wait to see how the next year progresses as we go into more specialized training. From Sarah lying on the floor taking selfies with Gale to Amy and Marshall cheesing for the camera, it is clear that these ladies genuinely love my dog and my son. I can never thank them enough for making a giant clumsy puppy into a loyal, well behaved companion for a teenager that otherwise would have no best friend.
In addition, the classes are very reasonably priced, and all the training aids they sell at Spirit Ranch are competitively priced with the big chain pet stores, but with the added bonus of letting you try them out on the spot with your dog! The small class sizes allow for each owner to address any concerns they are having that week, and to make friends with other dog loving families. Please feel free to contact me at email@example.com if you would like to know more about our experience with our Autism Service Dog and Spirit Ranch. I think that the trend towards families raising their service dogs at home from puppyhood is a much better way than the traditional practice of receiving a fully trained adult Service Dog as it allows for the friendship bond to be formed when the dog is small and cute and not threatening to the autistic person.
Tami Tate ( Saturday 27th December, 2014 )
My husband was at his wits end with Lady, my one year old Rottweiler pup! He had banned her from our get-a-away cabin on the weekends. I knew his mind, He was already picturing our lives 'without' Ladybug. :-( I started Lady in Puppy Classes with Amy, and her team of trainers at Spirit Ranch. Lady had passed all the way to Advance. So, what was the problem? The problem was when Lady got home, she went back to her old habits and only "worked" in class. I went to Amy with our dilemma. She suggested a 3 week Advance Boot Camp for Lady. I was needing to get Lady out of the house ASAP for my husband. Amy was able to place her almost immediately. One week with Lynn Pike, and 2 weeks with Stephen Wood. Two weeks turned into 3 weeks because Stephen still felt some work needed to be done with Lady - for her to be 'perfect.'
I not only admire the work Stephen Wood does, I also respect him for the intuitive way he understands and trains dogs! Lady has a strong predatory drive, can be stubborn, and wants to do things HER way. She wants what she wants, when she wants, and how she wants. Stephen not only got her on the right track, he demanded AND earned her respect in a kind and loving way.
Stephen was also very willing to meet us at both homes. Our cabin brought additional issues we didn't have in Tulsa. We run a deer ranch on the side, and Lady had to be able to be around the fawns and deer in the pens and preserve, 'up close' without chasing them. Stephen knew just what to do! I can happily say, Lady is doing really good at "leave the deer"!
When we saw Lady after Boot Camp, she was not the same dog. She was respectful. She didn't jump on you. She didn't drag you on the leash. She stayed off the bed and the furniture and she knew all her commands! Additionally, with Stephen's guidance, she even passed her Canine Good Citizen test!
My husband and I have completed the 4 private lessons with Stephen. We have both learned so much! Although I had taken the classes before, just being around Stephen's calm nature and thoughtful explanations of certain behaviors and training techniques, was incredibly eye opening. He not only helped my husband, who as hearing it for the first time; he helped refresh my memory and understand the whys and why nots of what I had been trained to do.
Stephen, in my opinion, really wants what is best for your dog. Although he only signed on to train Lady for 2 weeks, he felt she could do better if he kept her a bit longer. He ended up keeping Lady at his house for an additional week, at no extra charge. Lady was spayed during our training sessions. Stephen went above and beyond the call of duty by working around her/our schedule, and coming out on his own time just to do a low-key session with Lady. This extra time and effort was clearly not include in our 4-part private lessons.
Stephen is such an easy person to have in your house. Because of his calm mannerisms, you can easily pick up on things that you might have missed in class. Stephen put the wheels back on track with Lady. I know that it is up to us to keep her on track. With spray bottle in hand, and confidence in our tone, Lady has already become the Rottweiler we want her to be. We can not thank the Spirit Ranch team enough, and especially, Stephen Wood! We were ready to give up. My husband had already given up. Stephen stepped in and made a HUGE difference in our lives!
Mike & Debbie Baab
Debbie Baab ( Sunday 28th September, 2014 )
Stephen did a spectacular job! He not only trained Onyx but us. Little did we know that a lot of Onyx’s problems stemmed from us not doing the “right” and consistent things that go hand-in-hand with having an obedient dog. We were using the wrong dog leash, said “no” and crate punished him among other things.
Onyx’s changes after beginner boot camp:
• No longer jumps on people
• Doesn’t mouth/mildly bite anymore
• Behaves like an indoor dog instead of a wild animal
• Doesn’t drag us around on walks
• Doesn’t bark
• Knows commands: sit, lie down, stay, leave it, drop it and comes when called
• Not as skittish or afraid of strangers
Daniel Louser ( Monday 25th August, 2014 )
I have a 10 year old Goldendoodle that was really not behaving well. He was very agressive towards other dogs and occasionally to workers in our home. Stephen took Midnight to work with for only a week and the difference was amazing! When my dog came home Stephen showed the family how to keep working with Midnight on our own. We can not believe the difference. He is a well mannered companion now and is actually fun to take on walks. No more barking and trying to run after everyone we pass. I wish we had gotten training years ago! Spirit Ranch really made a difference in our family!
Shelly Gore ( Tuesday 10th June, 2014 )
We got our German Shepherd / Black Lab mix about in June of 2012. She was still full of crazy puppy energy when my son was born in 2013. It made us very anxious to have such an energetic and large dog near the baby. After the beginner and intermediate courses at Spirit Ranch, Zwei has made huge improvements and is now easily controllable and she knows the difference between the baby's toys and hers, and she knows to be super careful around the baby!
Kevin McWeeney ( Sunday 4th May, 2014 )
We got a wonderful puppy last June. She is a Golden Doodle w named Sophie. We were so excited. We had read all about this wonderful dog on the website and friends had told me they had seen them while on vacation and how sweet and gentle this breed happened to be. We have always had big dogs and had even been through training with each of our dogs.
Sophie was so adorable and loving. Everyone who saw Sophie immediately stopped and wanted to find out more about her.
Along with being so cute and lovable, Sophie has many other traits too. These other
traits not what we anticipated in this adorable puppy. Sophie demanded constant attention. When we tried to take her anyplace she jumped and twisted making it almost impossible to control. Another behavior that bewildered us was her incredible fear of other dogs. When she was around other dogs she became incredibly anxious and difficult.
We enrolled Sophie in a puppy Kindergarten class. It was in a group we had used years ago. The trainers were primarily volunteers and kept telling us we needed to get excited with Sophie so she would have fun with training. She would jump up and down, clap her hands and Sophie got worse and worse. We soon became Kindergarten dropouts.
We looked for other options visiting several and interviewing trainers. We finally found Spirit Ranch and enrolled in the beginner’s class. Upon entering the training class the first time we could almost not get in the door. Sophie was jumping, pulling, and jerking so hard we could hardly come in the room. We made quite an entrance.
Sophie did make progress. She is smart and caught onto to the commands – she was good at “sit” and “stay” and most of the beginner tasks. However, she was still impossible for us at home. She wasn’t too bad with me, but when my husband came home she would not leave him alone. There was no rest. She was constantly in the trash, cramming toys in our lap and never letting us relax.
Out of sheer desperation I asked Amy about Boot Camp. It was a difficult decision. We felt like we were giving up on Sophie were failures ourselves. Amy said she would assign Sophie to Stephen, one of her best trainers, for “boot camp”. I meet him on a Monday afternoon and I felt like I was abandoning one of my children to someone I had just talked to for five minutes. It wasn’t easy.
It was the best thing that could have happened. Stephen and I exchanged texts several times a day. He updated me on her progress, explained what he was working on with Sophie, sent me pictures and made the entire process very educational.
After our period of “boot camp” came to an end, we were anxious to get Sophie back home. But a little fearful too. Stephen brought her home and gave us our first “private” lesson. He showed us what he had been working on and gave us instructions for the week.
We were a little anxious about how we would continue with the progress Stephen had made with Sophie. What we found, however, was an entirely different dog. She responded well to our commands. She actually behaved like a “normal” dog. - but a trained “normal” dog. She would lay down in the evening and chewed on her toy and left us alone, was relaxed and a delight to have around.
We realize that we still have a lot of work to do with Sophie. We want her to be a delight to anyone she is around. She’s not there yet but I can certainly see that she will be in the future. She will be the dog that we wanted in the beginning. We will continue our training with Stephen and Spirit Ranch.
We are so thankful for having this resource available to us. Thank you Amy and Stephen for saving Sophie …… and our sanity.
Carla Tanner ( Sunday 30th March, 2014 )
Our CavaPooChon, Cooper, will be 9 months old soon and thanks to his training with Spirit Ranch is becoming our dream dog. We are amazed at his progress and are confident that with our commitment to working on on his skills at home, he will continue improving to be the cutest, most obedient well behaved dog ever. We have learned so much that will help him be successful with his training. Hope to continue on and eventually have him certified as a therapy dog. Thanks so much Amy, Megan and Sarah!
Brenda Elmore ( Thursday 27th March, 2014 )
So grateful to Amy and Megan for your help with my fearful German shepherd, Ricky. He's doing so much better! I don't have to worry about taking him to the park I'm confidant he will obey! I excited that I won't have a 125 pound dog dragging me down the street!!! :) happy training!!!
Micheal Burgess ( Wednesday 12th February, 2014 )
Another STELLAR PUPPY sitting turned in by Shelley. These little MUNCHKINS love her. We feel very secure leaving them with her. I never felt uneasy a single day. Thank you for your services.
Rudy, Jillianni, Andy, & Joy Cepurniek.
Joy Cepurniek ( Monday 18th November, 2013 )
We were having aggression issues with our 3 dogs, who individually are incredibly sweet, but as a group were out of control and a danger to our cats. We were at the point of re-homing our dogs which would have been devastating to us. I knew I had to try everything in my power before re-homing, so I called Spirit Ranch. Amy has met with us in our home to work on the pack order and to teach them that we are the leader (which addresses the aggression issue). The improvement has been quick and each day things get better and better. We currently are working with one dog who has severe anxiety and we will be starting individual obedience training soon and look forward to it. We feel as though we are learning more about our dogs and that we are regaining control of our house. Thank you Amy!
Wendy Akeman ( Saturday 5th October, 2013 )
Was not a good nights for frogs in our neighborhood -- Scotch and I saw 4 dead ones on our walk this morning. But thanks to our Spirit Ranch training and our "Leave it" command, happy to report all 4 frogs are still in their final resting spots!! (may they rest in peace....)
Brenda Dinan ( Friday 4th October, 2013 )
I just wanted to tell you that I've continued to work with Lucy on the things Toby taught us and she is going great! She has calmed down quite a bit and i am proud of her. I just want to thank Toby for giving us the tools to train her! I really appreciate it! Thanks again!
Leslie Draheim ( Sunday 4th August, 2013 )
Karly, our 9 month old Wheaten just completed Intermediate Obedience class. Itis her 2nd at Spirit Ranch, the first being Boot Camp. Amy and her trainers have changed Karly from a crazy pup into a much better mannered crazy pup. There may be other good dog trainers in Tulsa but none better than Amy. Her's is a rare work ethic and her concern for the dogs does not stop when the Classes are over. Thanks, Karly will be back.
Lynn Pike ( Monday 22nd July, 2013 )
A BIG thank you to Kaylee and Amy for all your help in Puppy Class with Ginger! Sprit Ranch is awesome!!!
Patty Lawson ( Monday 22nd July, 2013 )
This would not have been possible a month ago. We could barely let Daisy inside the house with us because she was so hyper and destructive. After boot camp and some in home training she is amazing! My kids can actually love on her and hang out with her! Thank you Spirit Ranch!
Paige Hammond McMurray ( Thursday 18th July, 2013 )
Spirit Ranch looks at each dogs strengths and "needs to improve" qualities.Then they personalize the training methods with your dog depending on your goals. Amy and her staff want to see every dog succeed! The support and guidance has been wonderful! Toots and I have learned so much! Thank you, Spirit Ranch!!
Patty Walker ( Thursday 18th July, 2013 )
Spirit Ranch professional DOG training has been an awesome time,w/ lots of fun learning how to teach my buddy to be a better n more responsible Dog.. love you guys , thanks for the help!!
Charles Joseph Doublebower ( Thursday 11th July, 2013 )
Woodstock continues to improve on his social skills. I have tried very hard to get him the exposure to people, pets and places that he was lacking when I found him at the shelter. He is beginning to understand his new world. A world without fear, hunger or abandonment. It's fun to see him take part in life and be happy. I love this for him. He has a long way to go, but he is on his way to forgetting about fear. Thank you so much for your help. We look forward to the Intermediate class and more experiences for him. I would have to say that it's not just one of your trainers, but the whole Spirit Ranch team that I am grateful for. Everyone of you guys has touched our lives and heart. I would love a picture of all the trainers and Woodstock, Go Team Woodstock.
He is really turning into something wonderful…
Thank you to all of you,
Anne ( Wednesday 10th July, 2013 )
Thank you so much for all of your help. You have gone far beyond what you had to do for us. We greatly appreciate you and your guidance.
Jennifer Downs Dodder ( Wednesday 10th July, 2013 )
We recently used Spirit Ranch, leaving our two dachshunds with Shelley. She came over after we came in, and the reception she got from Rudy & Jillianni was overwhelming! They were glad to see us, but nothing like the welcome they gave her! They loved her! That was the biggest endorsement you could ever have! (And she had only been gone a few hours!)
Joy Cepurniek ( Wednesday 10th July, 2013 )
We had so much fun at Doga today!! Can't wait to see the pics and can't wait to do it again - thanks Amy, Sarah and Spirit Ranch!
Pam Rice ( Tuesday 9th July, 2013 )
Me and Alpha just went to Woofstock, nothing like having the best behaved dog there. Got countless compliments on his manners. Thanks Spirit Ranch!
Stephen Wood ( Tuesday 9th July, 2013 )
Thank you Amy for all the help!
Alexis Etheridge III ( Tuesday 9th July, 2013 )
Amazing positive results with our Karly! Thank you SO much!
Sandra Pike ( Tuesday 9th July, 2013 )
I was speaking with Kelly, my girlfriend, who is in the 4pm beginners class with her 10 month old Red Pit Bull, Cinnamon. Kaelee, her trainer who is also our trainer, was telling Kelly about having several pit bulls in her classes at the moment, and that her earlier puppy class has two blues that have such pretty eyes. Kelly told her that "yes" she knew them and that was how we all ended up in class, because we had all followed Amy Vaughan to the Spirit Ranch for dog training. Amy had previously helped us train our yellow and black lab puppies 3 years ago. It is so nice to receive the experience, knowledge and common since that we are being given in class each week, it's also kind of sad at how much I have forgotten in 3 years.
Camden Campbell ( Tuesday 9th July, 2013 )
working dog puppy class was a blast today, Remy and Sassy Bell did wonderful and it was so good to see Sassy Bell playing with the other puppies without having any nervous issues..good times. I love our classmates!!!
Camden Campbell ( Tuesday 9th July, 2013 )