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We have used Bark Busters when we first got Nellie. She had some issues with fear and confidence that we were not having a lot of luck with.


I think how good the system works would depend on who the trainer is for your area and how well they communicate with you and your dog. I think we paid around $400 which is for the lifetime of the dog. If we have new issues, we can call and he will come back out, and we have had him out a few times since we started.


He also went through the preliminary stuff and asked if it was something we wanted to continue and if not he would leave, no obligation.


It is probably similar to CM, it is based on verbal corrections and no physical, except the tug on the leash. They also have a small bag of chains that you toss towards the dog to get its attention, that is the part we were not real sure of. It has helped Nellie tremendously, she went from hiding as soon as a new person would come in the house, to her current of keeping an eye on people until she knows them, but she will stay in the same room now.


When he has come back we were actually having new flooring put in with contractors there and he was impressed at how calm she really was.


I am currently at work but if there are more specific questions let me know and I will try to answer.



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Arrgg. They are big here. Plain and simple, we (the training center I go to and I) just don't like them.


The fact that they say "we can train your dog in 2 hours guaranteed" just drives us crazy. They have lots of radio commercials, one said basically this "I had a really bad dog but Bark Busters trained it and I was so happy that now own one of the Bark Busters centers". So what, this person couldn't train her dog so she opens a training center?


I don't really having anything against their methods (No harsh corrections mostly leadership skills etc - that is the same as what I like - well, not the throwing things part but you get the idea). Just the whole guaranteed for life thing (you just can't DO that with a dog), the "train in 2 hours" thing (WHAT?), the fact that the training is in your house (how will the dog act at a beach, walking down the street, walking through a crowd, etc if only trained at the house?), the cost, and several other things like that.


I don't know, they are just big (I mean HUGE) out here and big rivals with the training center I am with (which is a GREAT place).


Oh, and by now I think most of you know Dazzle. She is considered a very well trained dog - she just doesn't do behaviors that are "bad dog" things, she listens 99.99% the time (you can't really ever say 100%), great around dogs, people, etc etc, she has her CGC, etc etc... And yet she gets a "C" on their Behavior Quiz - something just isn't right there.

This is the description for dogs that get a C:

This category of dogs has issues that can be serious if not addressed soon. Owners of these dogs are constantly being annoyed and irritated by their behavior and are beginning to think "Something has got to be done." Fortunately, dogs can change their behavior quite easily, so these owners should seek help immediately.
And this is how a conversation went at an Agility fun match a few weeks ago:

She is so well behaved. Always paying attention to you for commands and ignoring distractions like that! Wow!.....She does Agility too? **some dogs were there that don't do agility. she watches Dazzle do agility** Wow, she is FAST and look at that distance and accuracy!......She is only 16 months old - my dog is 5 and can't do that stuff! Can you train my dog?
Something just doesn't add up here...
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Hi INU. My take on this is basically what the others have said. It's a franchise, and therefore extremely variable. Occasionally there will be a really knowledgeable trainer, but from what I've read of people's experiences here, that's not generally the case.


The "cookie cutter" method worries me, as does the fact that from what I've heard, the standard 'training' their franchisees get is very limited, both in time and in content.


My gut feeling is that unless the trainer was very aware of the sorts of issues your mom's dog has, their sort of training as far as I know about it, would not be the best for fear-based issues.


I wonder whether some of the behaviorist specialists recommended by people on the boards may have any knowledge of colleagues in Japan. Would it be worth contacting someione like Dr Karen Overall and asking her if she knows anyone there.

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If your mom's Pom is fearful, I would not use punitive methods on her.


Is she willing to read some books and go from there? "Don't Shoot the Dog" by Karen Pryor, "The Culture Clash" by Jean Donaldson, "The Cautious Canine" by Patricia McConnell, would all be a good start and give her more tools to work with a fearful dog than a simple jerk/choke/throw approach would.


By the way, leash pops are physical corrections.

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Hi Inu, if you have any questions let me know I will try to answer that is not a problem.


I would agree with Tassie that the methods may not be the best for a very fearful dog. When they first started with Nellie, instead of throwing the chains, we just clapped our hands to get her attention.


We did not totally follow all there suggestions, which is why Nellie is still graded at a "C"

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What about books on tape? (or cds).

Some info-type books like that are one tape these days - books like training dogs or breeding fish or whatever.


I don't know if that is even an option and in this case an actual good quality trainer might be the way to go, but, it is just a thought. Gotta keep all doors open right?

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Inu, hi and sorry I am late to this. I second what Barb says and was going to suggest the same thing about asking for references from well known behaviourists outside of Japan.I did this when looking for a herding trainer and I had a very kind response from someone in England, so it is definitely worth trying. I should have told you that when I did my famous "search" for you, all I got were references to non-Japanese behaviourists. I DID find out that " Culture Clash " has been translated into Japanese ! Great news ! Sounds like your Mum needs someone to come in and help her, though. There was also a book by a Japanese behaviourist which looks pretty big and I tried to send you the title/name but couldn't copy and paste it for some reason. I tried again and here is a link to the book title. I tried to search for the author but couldn't find anything.here Sorry I can't help more. Can I help out computer-wise ? Mine is bi-lingual.

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