The most dog-specific, custom-tailored training available
Training isn’t about tricks & what your dog can do when you have a treat in my hand, it’s a lifestyle. To cater to the psychological & physical needs of your dog (and most likely the sanity of yourself / home), training is an absolute must.
Through these training lessons, my goal is to focus on creating a calm state of mind for your dog. All lessons are catered specifically to your dog and the behaviors that aren’t serving the overall household’s lifestyle & happiness (jumping, door darting, etc.) and as well as strengthening the behaviors that do (recall, loose leash walking, etc.).
In your home. The easiest way to show you (the dog owner) how to best work, train, and hold your dog accountable is in his or her own space.
In this day and age, I know it’s hard to get everyone’s schedules to align, so I have worked with anywhere from 1 person to the whole family (children included). In order for you to get the most out of training, you want to make sure that the information learned during our lessons together is shared with the rest of your friends and family. Consistency is key in working with dogs!
I have worked with hundreds of dogs from puppyhood to adulthood. The curriculum may be different depending on where your dog is in their development and your age-specific issues, but the goal is the same: a calm state of mind!
When it comes to training dogs within a multi-dog household, you always want to train them individually before you start working them together.
For example, if you want both dogs to walk nicely on leash together, you start by teaching each dog the correct way to walk on leash first.
This might mean that when I am training one, I ask you to have the other crated, in a separate room, etc. so we can focus on teaching new behaviors with lower distractions to raise their rate of success.
Any and all things related to the lifestyle of you / you dog except aggression & resource guarding. All components listed below:
I ask very specific questions on my booking form that collects the information needed to know if I would be the right trainer for you.
If when I reach out, I am offering a time slot for a lesson, that means that after reading your contact form, I know I can help you & your dog in your goals & I am ready to get started as soon as you are.
Instead of telling you, let me show you through watching a few of my previous training clients start to finish.
Let me give you some background details on why these owners reached out to see if any of their journeys may parallel yours & your dogs:
Click on Any of the 4 Pictures Below to Watch Their Transformations:
I do not (my dog prefers resting on the floor in our home over working – don’t we all). When working on issues that lend themselves to distractions, we will “use” whatever is in the environment around your home (such as dogs walking on the opposite sidewalk).
I do not.
There would be so much valuable information (even in a free consultation) that you may be able to leave just that one meeting with a wonderful list of actionable tips and may not even need to transition to a payable service.
For this reason, I ask dog owners to follow my Instagram @Handfulofleashes to get an authentic, day-to-day view of my business and see if I would be a good trainer for you & your dog.
If the answer if “yes,” then you would fill out a contact form, specify if you are only doing 1 Lesson or a Package and we would get started right from there based on the information provided in the form!
I offer the option to do 1 lesson for two reasons:
Note: The dogs / results in the pictures below were from clients who chose the package option.
I plan my weekly scheduling around how many lessons I am expected to be doing with each client. If you were to say you only wanted 1 lesson on the contact form, once we have scheduled that lesson I don’t take your dog into consideration when I am booking the week following your lesson.
Because of this, if I already booked the week following your original 1 lesson before you decided to switch to a package it may be 2 weeks before I can get you back on my schedule.
I am happy to get you back on the schedule if this were to be the case but I wanted to share this to help manage expectations around how scheduling works.
Time & Day is based around your availability but I mostly book Monday through Thursday to be mostly attentive to dog sitting / dog walking dogs on the weekends.
I ask for your availability on the “Contact Form” at the bottom of this service page so I know where could work best for both of our schedules.
NOTE: Training lessons are generally booked with 15-30 minutes of wiggle room. This is to account for the transportation nature of my services (accidents, road closures, following a GPS, distance from the training lesson previous, inclement weather, etc.) as well as any overflow of time in the previous lesson / service I provided.
I take cash, check, or Venmo.
As a business owner, it was imperative that I created a business Venmo to keep business and personal transactions separate. The downside to this is there is a transaction fee to have this separation.
For this reason, if you choose to use Venmo as your form of payment, there is an additional charge:
For every $100 spent, there is a $2 charge to cover fees.
|Total Price of Service(s)||Additional Cost|
|$1 – $99||+ $2|
|$100 – $199||+ $4|
|$200 – $299||+ $6|
|And so on…||—|
Before the start of service / day of the service.
If you are paying with cash or check, I love for dog owners to have it ready for when I come for the private in-home.
If you are paying with Venmo, I love for dog owners to Venmo me before the private in-home(s).
On my “About” page.
Here you will find my motivation to grow Handful of Leashes, my mission statement, the start of the business in 2014, my education, seminars and expos I have attended, and a timeline of when I added each service to my business.
On Instagram, I post tips, behind the scenes of business, and day-to-day life with your dogs (and even try and tag your Instagram so you can share their cute little faces to your story as well).
Facebook gets the same content, but it may not get posted until after I have finished the service.
Below is a feed of my most recent Instagram posts (and stories are added daily):
The contact form that my new clients fill out immediately gets sent to my business email. Because I try and manage a good work / life balance (which is difficult when you are so in love with your business), I try and only check my business email once a day, usually in the AM before I start my services for the day.
If you fill out the contact form over the weekend, you can expect a response early next week.
If you fill out the contact form after 5 PM, you can expect a response within 1-3 business days.
The reason it may take 1-3 days is because I first:
Then, you’ll get a response from me in the format you checked off at the bottom of the contact form (Email, Text Message, or Instagram Message).
My response is usually as simple and straightforward as:
“Hey _____, it’s Heather from Handful of Leashes 🖐 I received your contact form & if it works for you & Fido, I have availability around 11 AM this Tuesday, October 6th of this upcoming week?
I try and get you & your pup on my calendar for training within a week of filling out a contact form. This is made possible by asking all the right questions in the contact form (distance, expectations, your availability, goals, etc.) so I can move to booking your lesson(s) seamlessly & quickly.
1 Hour Private In-Home Training Lesson
Package of 5 Private In-Home Training Lessons
(You save $100)
If you would like to proceed with 1 on 1 Private In Home Training, fill out the “Contact Form” below so I can receive more information about you / your dog / issues / goals. I look forward to helping you change your life through training your dog.
I can give you the tools, information, and accountability necessary to train your best friend… but ONLY if you are ready to fully commit.
If you don’t feel you are ready to do so, I totally understand and would focus on learning in the meantime. We can never do too much of that!
Feel free to follow my Instagram @handfulofleashes to receive motivation to change the relationship with your dog and learn tips for crate training, socialization, mindset, loose leash walking, etc.
I post to my stories daily to keep my current clients motivated and my dog-loving followers learning.
At the end of the day, my goal is to help dog owners give their dog the best life while they are here with us, whether I’m getting paid (via services) or not (by sharing tons of information on Instagram).
Thanks again so much for all your guidance with Lucy! We have noticed so much of a difference in her behavior since we started sessions with you. Colin and I have gained so much insight on basic puppy knowledge and understand more how they think and put puzzles together. We just practiced our feeding routine a bunch of times and she chose the crate as her “place” and did awesome – made eye contact while waiting for me to say “okay” and everything! I can’t wait to see how much she grows as we continue to practice everything you taught us. Hopefully in a couple months we will work with you again to practice even more things as she gets older ❤Amanda M.
Since our training, Teddy is like an old retired dog now. He’s like a Zen Buddhist monk. I’m changing his name to namaste!Bob M.
Heather, you have done an amazing job with our little Daisy already. She turned 4 months yesterday and in 2 months she has grown into this pup that we can take on outings. She loves to meet new people but is so excited to meet and play with other dogs. She is still learning about the world around her, but she has come a long way. Lots of hard work on our part but worth it all. Heather, you truly are a gem! By the way, she is doing “in” beautifully! What is next to conquer?Brenda B.
Thanks as always Heather. Sadie has been a dream. I can’t believe how amazingly smart she is. 11 short weeks ago this girl knew almost nothing. Now she’s behaving better than I could have ever imagined and earning our trust and special rewards for her excellent behavior. None of this would have been possible without your incredible service. Thank you!!Brett H.
Walks have been such a breeze and anytime we get our walk shoes out, she looks for her cot and as soon we say “Place,” she runs right over. We’ve had plenty of encounters with with trucks, bikes, runners, etc. and she was able to keep focused and has not barked or lunged since the training. Our parents have been so impressed anytime they are over with how long she stays in place and when she’s released, she’s not all over them. Thank you for everything!Bridgette M.
Heather is amazing. On her first visit she organized the family so we could do the work that we needed to do with our 9-week old puppy, Honey. Heather addressed all of our concerns and gave us actionable suggestions to help Honey move forward with her growth and development. Finally, it is clear that Heather has a special way with animals. She loves them and they love her. I highly recommend Handful Of Leashes.Cecile A.
Thanks again for your 1st lesson. We are making progress already!Cotter S.
We thought we were experienced dog owners until we brought home a puppy!! Heather took us through a step-by-step process over 5 lessons that helped us put systems in place that brought peace to our home and made walking enjoyable. With her gentle manner and cheerful warmth, Heather taught us how to use positive reinforcement to encourage good behavior. We love Heather!Dodi K.
I was initially looking to have Maynard, my standard poodle not pull on walks, not rush to the door and have generally good house behavior. Maynard learned all of that and much more. Not only did Heather do a great job in training our puppy but also taught us how to think as the dog sees the world in order to understand why and how dogs learn and act. I would highly recommend Heather to anyone needing their dog trained. I will be using her in the future for additional training we may need.Ira S.
Our dogs have run our household for over a year. We allowed them to because they’re so cute and loving and funny… and all of the other things! As they are getting older some of the habits aren’t so cute anymore and we’ve found ourselves unable to have guests over, answer our door without madness, say the world “hello” without them going crazy, etc. Heather came in and in 4 sessions taught us how to redirect them and start us on the path to household harmony! Heather knows dogs, she knows people too! We realized very early on in our sessions that our dogs, like children will thrive on having structure. We are now able to have a successful weekend walk, on a busy trail with bikes, dogs, people, and sounds… both boys listen and don’t react to most distractions! What a much more pleasant walk!! We’ve implemented many new practices with her guidance and although it’s still work everyday we are on the right path! Highly highly recommend Heather!Jennifer M.
We could not have accomplished as much as we did with our two year old Goldendoodle without Heather’s help. She was so great at isolating the problems and potential solutions and we saw a dramatic improvement in Graham’s behavior and our relationship with him. We’re so glad we used her program and can’t recommend her enough to anyone who needs help with giving their pet more structure!Joseph F.
Roo has been so amazing! Maverick has been on the ground with his toy cars and pushing them around all over and Roo I walking right by him not even phased! I even got the broom out yesterday to sweep up hair and he walked away until I was done! I used his remote for when I was blow drying and to call him inside the house. I hit tone twice and before I could do stim, he was by my feet inside!! I’m so happy and excited that he is doing so good and he really is like a completely different dog ever since the first day you came, but I’m sad too because I don’t want our Monday “get togethers” aka Roo lessons to stop! Such mixed emotions!!Casey K.
Heather should absolutely be your first choice for anything related to your dog! Heather is the best and I HIGHLY recommend her services. She is very friendly, professional, personable, and she loves dogs! She is extremely knowledgeable when it comes to training and dog behavior. She takes the time to get to know both you and your dog. I have used her virtual training sessions and her in home training sessions and both of those were incredibly helpful in regards to helping my dogs leash pulling, reactivity, and anxiety. We saw improvements with my dog the same day. My dog used to bite the vacuum when it was off, let alone when it was on and now she can just lay down as we vacuum and she doesn’t even care! Also, my dog no longer pulls on her leash (hikes are truly one million times easier and everyone is able to enjoy themselves), listens for my recall, and is less reactive to sounds from the neighborhood. Heather works with you in the moment and she gives you advice for how to continue to work on training when she is not there. She is also VERY responsive to messages and will always respond if you have a question or concern. I can’t believe I waited this long to use her training services, both my dog and I are so much happier since we started training with Heather!!!!!! Thank you Heather!Katie K.
We adopted a rescued Rottweiler named Stella almost a year ago. She came with issues but was improving………SLOWLY! Stella is intimidating, stubborn, and highly energetic. Since she is a Rottweiler she scares and intimidates most people. She was “encouraged” to get training at the daycare she goes to where she can release some energy. Heather was recommended to us and she very quickly helped us understand Stella and gave us strategies to use to help wrangle her feistiness into some structure and discipline. We learned that Stella is extremely bright and needs “work” to keep her engaged and productive. I mentioned to Heather on her first time here that she is more of a “dog owner trainer” than a dog trainer. In five weeks we have gotten Stella to the point that we think we can continue to help her progress without Heather’s assistance. I cannot recommend Heather highly enough. She is professional, friendly, and very conscientious with her work. I’d hire Heather in a second if we needed additional support going forward. It was a very good decision hiring Heather who did such a good job with giving us the support we needed to help our dog thrive.Kevin O.
Alfie is doing great thanks to you! Once you showed us how to use the kennel and place properly, it changed our lives!! Thank you again!Kristen D.
Heather is hands down the BEST trainer. She is unyieldingly kind, patient, smart and she makes training so much fun! We hired Heather when Piper was very young – about 4 months old. Piper was afraid of everything and becoming very reactive to things, causing the whole family stress and frustration. Within that first lesson, we saw a huge change in Piper. The amount of information Heather gives you in each lesson is incredible. She really sets you up for success with every step you take with her! Now 2 months later, Piper is the best 6 month old puppy you could ever meet. She’s confident – not reactive to other dogs, people or things. She trusts us to keep her safe because Heather helped show us how to grow our relationship in a very positive way. Piper comes with us everywhere, doesn’t pull on the leash, is e-collar trained (which is the greatest tool I have ever learned how to use), a part of my parent’s dog’s “pack” – which when we started off Piper and their dogs didn’t get along), allows guests to enter our home without rushing at them, doesn’t jump, knows “place,” “sit,” “down,” “come,” and listens always. She has a long line Heather showed us how to use so we can trust her with more room to roam. Piper still gets scared of new tools like the nail clippers and the brush, however Heather taught us how to desensitize her to anything new we bring to her. And already she’s getting much better! With time, I know we will conquer this new obstacle as well because we gave the proper guidance. We can also now trust Piper with my parent’s chickens, and with our free roam bunnies in our home. All in all, I can’t say enough good things about Heather! She’s extraordinary with dogs and her lessons plans are incredible. She truly knows what she’s doing and brings such joy, peace and fun into each lesson. She’s an incredible person as well as trainer. We loved spending time with her as you can tell how genuine, kind and positive she is right away. We are better off for knowing her! She has opened up Piper and our lives for the better, and our relationships with each other are so much better and stronger because of her. If we ever need anything – dog sitting, a visit for Piper while we have long days, any other behavior hurdles that may arise, we will not hesitate to call Heather and book her!Kristen H.
Thank you so much. Hannah went through her paces by my side without her leash. She was spot on.Mary K.
Yesterday was very eye opening to me. I put Oakley in his crate around 10:45 PM. We all stayed downstairs until 11:30 and then went upstairs. Not a peep until 5:45 AM!Melissa L.
I just had Pepe out for a walk and he did great! We even ran into a neighbor and he didn’t bark and every time I stopped he went into a sit without asking! Love my boy! And his trainer, of course!Monica S.
Heather absolutely changed our lives for the better! Ted is learning every day to be the best version of himself all thanks to Heather! In four sessions we have seen a total transformation of his door manners and walking etiquette. I would highly recommend Heather if you are looking to better improve your dogs life and yours!Morgan F.
Okay, incredibly random question: have you been working with Piper? She did absolutely fantastic for her nails today since she worked with you. She went from fighting me the whole time to being an angel today. It was a complete 180; I’m very proud of her. 10/10 keep up the good work.Nan C. – Groomer to one of my training clients
I’d been thinking of e-collar training Taz for a while, and I’m SO glad I finally asked Handful of Leashes to work with us and so happy with where Taz is with his recall training. I’m finally to the point where I can let him off leash and trust that he’ll come when I call. The e-collar has been a huge part of our training and even though he always wears it when he’s off leash, I’m starting to need to use tone/stim less and less. It’s crazy how well he has been responding to it and how much better our communication seems already! I’m visiting my parents this weekend (Taz’s favorite place) and he’s SO happy to be able to run around their yard freely to explore and play. Super thankful for Handful of Leashes for teaching u e-collar accountability and helping us get to the place where Taz can be free to just be a dog!Rachel H.
I just went for a short run with Leo and he did great! He was right next to me the whole time! Before, he would literally pull me down the street too fast and we could never get around the neighborhood because I was exhausted. My neighbors would laugh at me with Leo pulling me down the street. It’s like night and day walking Leo now! Thanks to you for the amazing training lessons!!Roseanne S.
Heather, your training advice has been so helpful. Lily is so smart and is learning all the commands to make her a great addition to our family. Thanks so much!S. Williams’ Family
Thanks so much! We’ve already been working on everything! She has gone into her crate so much already!Trish U.