"We adopted our first two dogs, Macy and Brodie, as rescues when they were both over a year and a half old. When Macy passed away after 12 wonderful years with us we decided to go to a breeder for our next dog. We love our rescue dogs, but both had behavioral challenges and we wanted a “fresh start” with our next one. We did our research and decided that we wanted a Bouvier des Flandres. We knew training was going to be of utmost importance raising our puppy – especially with this breed. After a lot of research into positive reinforcement training we reached out to a friend who happens to be a Veterinary Behaviorist at The University of Tennessee veterinary school to help us find the right training program. She, in turn, spoke to colleagues at The Ohio State University Vet School, who recommended New Beginnings K-9 Training. It only took one phone conversation with Karen to know we had found the right place. We enrolled Margot in the Right Start Puppy class and brought her to several puppy socials before the class started. We instantly appreciated Karen and her staff’s unique approach and highly personalized approach to training, and enjoyed watching Margot learn and grow. Since that first class, we have taken several specialty classes, including a Calming class, Recall class and a Holiday Manners class (one of our favorites and key to a well-behaved puppy at our holiday party)! We also enrolled Margot and Bixby in daycare and board both our dogs there when we travel. We can’t recommend Karen and the entire team at New Beginnings enough—they love our dogs as much as we do!"Thank you so much Karen."
"Several months ago, after owning nothing but beagles for 30 years, I found myself the proud owner of a 1-1/2 year old Sheltie, Loki. (Actually, I’m the third owner). Loki came to me as an absolutely adorable dog. He was also absolutely terrified – of the outdoors and any kind of noise. I honestly didn’t know how to help him. That’s when I found Karen Abell of New Beginnings K-9 Training. Karen is a rarity is today’s world. She is absolutely honest and doesn’t sugar coat anything. She does not promise to perform miracles and she does not guarantee results (the progress depends on the dog). What Karen does promise is that she will work with your dog to bring about improvement, and that is exactly what she has done for Loki. In my opinion, she is absolutely the best at what she does. She is excellent in evaluating a dog and its problems. She also has a method that works. It involves understanding the dog and its personality, the motivation required to bring about results, patience, and lots of positive reinforcement. In addition, the process involves homework on the owner’s part. (This is not magic. The owner also has to put effort into the process or it will not work). The change in Loki since he has been training with Karen has been very positive. It has not been instantaneous and it has not been easy, but it has been amazing to me to see my dog come out of his shell and reveal his true (and often mischievous) personality. Loki is a work in progress. But he continues to improve daily. Without Karen, this would not have been possible. So if you truly want to help you dog and are willing to put in the time and effort that involves under Karen’s excellent leadership, I highly recommend New Beginnings K-9 Training."
"We began working with Karen in May of 2007 after we rescued our two Golden Retriever Mixes from a pretty bad situation. Both dogs had different issues that we needed to work on. Teddy was a very nervous excitable dog that had shown to be leery of children and strangers while his sister, Cleo, loved everyone with too much enthusiasm. Quite a diverse handful! Working with Karen using positive reinforcement has given us the tools and confidence to manage both dogs in and outside of the home. Throughout the training, Karen used very real life situations in order to teach our dog’s replacement behaviors for the not so desirable behaviors. Now we can take a pleasant walk with both dogs and have guests over to our home without being worried about how our dogs will behave. The best part of the using positive reinforcement training is that it becomes a game for the dogs. It takes hard work to see the results, but getting there can be fun!"
"New Beginnings K-9 Training was amazing with our new puppy, a chocolate lab, Annie. The knowledge we gained from them as pet owners was and continues to be invaluable. They taught us how to react to our puppy to enforce the acceptable behaviors. It was really funny because it was as they said, just like having a two year old child, they cry to get your attention and throw fits to get what they want. When you give in they realize this works and continue the behavior. Our Annie was the same way, barked or jumped up on you to get the attention, when she realized this wouldn't work she gave the acceptable behavior of waiting for our attention. Every training session was beneficial and astounding. I left each session with valuable information and still use it every day. Annie is now a joy to be around thanks to New Beginnings!"
"My husband and I own a 5 yr. old Labradoodle, Lucy. We love Lucy and consider her part of our family! While Lucy is extremely affectionate and smart we were unable to communicate to her what we needed her to do: OBEY. Two areas of concern: walking Lucy and her relationship with our 4 yr old granddaughter."
"New Beginnings K-9 Training’s positive reinforcement approach is wonderful and most effective. Karen has helped Summer do a complete turn around. She is not nearly as fearful as she was. We are still working on some issues but would never have gotten this far without Karen’s help. I highly recommend her and her dog training program. Thank you so much Karen."
"After rescuing my second dog, Suki, and taking in a housemate who also had a dog, I needed some guidance. Suki had a high level of anxiety and exhibited food aggression toward the other dogs in the home. Karen is not only a dog trainer, she is a biologist and a teacher. By working with her, I learned how to reduce Suki's anxiety and how to reward desirable behavior in a manner that was enjoyable and helped my dog and I bond. During our sessions, Karen was always patient and ensured that I was practicing the new methods in a way that was precise and consistent so that all of the dogs in the household could benefit from our work. Her training sessions and homework assignments were specifically tailored to the needs of Suki and the situation in our household. Thanks to our work with Karen, Suki has made observable gains and exhibits much calmer behaviors than she did nine months ago, and I’ve learned reinforcement skills that I can use with all of my dogs."
"My husband and I loved our new puppy, Lucy, but we just could not control her energy. We called Karen in a moment of desperation. She swooped in like a superhero and worked her magic! We did eight individual sessions with Karen and we also participated in group training. She taught Lucy all kinds of different tricks and skills, and she taught us how to manage her hyper-excitability. The thing that we loved the most was how positive and gentle Karen was in training our dog. Lucy is almost 2 now, and she has turned into the dog that we were hoping for. We are very appreciative of New Beginnings K-9 Training and all that Karen did for us!"
"My name is Dolly, and I have just been adopted by my forever friend, Cindy. I am a 2+ year old white standard poodle who needed a home at the same time that Cindy realized she needed a forever friend. Several years ago Cindy learned positive reinforcement methods from and Karen Abell and now Cindy is SOLD on this method of training canine best friends. She says it is so good, and the results are so quick and the whole thing reinforces the bond between the two of you. Late last summer, Cindy called Karen and asked if she could help her find a dog to live with and love. Karen sent Cindy a questionnaire to complete before they had a “New Adoption Educational Consult” meeting. Those questions made Cindy think long and hard about what she would like: age, sex, breed, hair length, color, disposition, temperament, and a LOT of other things that are really important when two individuals decide they are going to live together. The questions, and the meeting, confirmed that this was a serious matter, not just a case of going out and finding a companion. It made Cindy realize that she was not ready for a puppy…that she really wanted an adult dog, one who was well mannered, easy-going, and had a sweet face: and guess what…that describes me to a TEE!!!!! While Cindy says I am almost perfect, I still have a tendency to pull when we go on our walks, and we are working on that every day. AND we have made sure that I know how to “Come!” I’ll tell you a secret: I don’t want to be very far from her anyway, so it is easy for me to want to respond to her when she asks me to “Come.” I am looking forward to going to Karen’s new facility in Erlanger, and I hope I will see some of you all there. Woof!!!!"