Sending our 4-year old adopted Pit Bull, Max, to board and train with Christina was the single best decision we could have made for ourselves and Max, period.
Before meeting Christina, our home life with Max was a struggle, to say the least. He was a nervous dog with unpredictable behavior and his aggression and guarding tendencies made it unsafe to be around him, as much as we don’t like to admit it. In the 9 months we had Max, there were multiple instances of aggression including 3 bites to my hand, neck and face area. We knew there was something Max needed to feel balanced and not threatened but we just didn’t speak his language, and giving up on him was not an option.
There were countless things that Britney and I did to worsen his behaviors but we simply didn’t know or understand that the small things add up and they created a sense of entitlement in Max that were attributing to his behavior. Giving commands and not following through, no accountability, feeding rituals, etc. Christina taught us how to lead in our own house, and she taught Max how to follow. It really is that simple.
In the 2 weeks Christina worked with Max, she completely transformed the way he sees us. She created a new hierarchy in our house where Max simply understands that he no longer makes decisions anymore, we do. At first, when we were looking for help, we thought that philosophy sounded too strict. Almost as if were being too rough on him, but it turns out we were in denial and it was EXACTLY what Max needed. Now 3 weeks after Max has been home continuing his training, we can say with total confidence that the way Max responds to training, it’s the kind of structure he now craves. He looks for direction from us because he has a trust in us he did not have before, and he is as happy as can be.
Max looks for direction when walking through every threshold and he never breaks “place” without permission. He responds so well to all corrections and has met multiple people (on leash and with other precautions, of course) since being home with zero nervousness and aggression at all. There is not a single command Max learned that he didn’t retain when coming home. Recently, the topic of conversation when we have guests is how obedient Max has become and how impressed they are that you can have that level of control of your dog. It’s almost like people have never seen that level of obedience from a dog to an owner up close.
Thanks to the time and effort Christina put into Max and us, we’re out of the hole we once thought we were in. In a sense, she saved Max’s life. If we didn’t get control over him, we worry what could have come of his behavior if we weren’t equipped with the knowledge to manage him the way we need to. The communication of his progress was daily and never lacking and her go-home session was so critical as she doesn’t drop off and go. She stays around to make sure that the transition home, which is so important, puts us in a position to succeed. It worked.
Max is still not the perfect dog, nor are we the perfect owners, but we can rely on every single thing we learned to make sure he lives a long, happy and safe life. It’s on us now to continue. If that means specific rituals and rules we follow with guests every time he meets dogs or people, so be it. We’d prefer to give Max what he needs for life rather than have someone force us to take his for being scared or misunderstood.
Another thing that must be said, Christina loves what she does. It shows in her work, in every consultation, training session and text message she sends while your pup is in her care. She loves watching these dogs transform and she treats your dog like her own. She wants the best for them, and knows exactly how to communicate that to them and to us. She’s a wonderful person who understood Max and us and never spoke to us like Max was broken. From the moment we consulted with her we knew she was the one to guide Max in the right direction because success was the only option. Her attitude was of progress, rehabilitation and Max’s well-being. It was obvious she was the one.
When Max was gone, we missed him a lot, but never for a second were we concerned about his well being. If you are concerned about letting your dog board and train with Christina, rest easy, because in my 15 years owning dogs, I’ve never felt more comfortable having my loved one be with anyone else outside home. Max will be back for refreshers and new lessons and we’re looking forward to her in-home sessions as well to fine tune some of the skills Max has already learned.
Christina’s board and train was nothing short of life changing for us and Max and we can’t recommend her highly enough. Not only is she a gifted professional with a love for dogs, she’s now a great friend to us and, in so many ways, part of our family.
Dan & Britney
I was previously told by another dog trainer that there was ‘only so much that can be done’ for my dog. She is incredibly anxious and experienced a significant amount of trauma prior to me adopting her. All of her trauma and anxiety can be the perfect storm for aggression. As her owner, I would avoid any situation where she would be scared because in my mind I was preventing possible issues. Ultimately, I was enabling my dog’s behaviors instead of working through them. Enter Christina! Not even knowing where to begin with my dog, I signed up for a 2 week Board & Train Program. In 2 weeks my dog has learned so many new skills and knowing those skills layered with the structure Christina has taught me, my dog is almost unrecognizable! Not to mention that Christina has been so helpful throughout the entire process. I had moments of apprehension and was anxious for my dog but Christina communicated with me throughout the entire process and has continued to be a resource since my dog’s return. Seriously, this is the best thing I could have done for my dog.
My dog’s name is Gus and he is dog aggressive and overly excitable. He was a rescue from 4 Paws Dog Rescue of NJ as a puppy. When we got him he was a well behaved puppy. After we adopted Gus we didn’t keep up with his training as much as we should have and just expected him to stay as he was. As you can guess that didn’t happen and he turned into an overly aroused and dog aggressive dog. He is the sweetest dog but the final straw was him biting me in the hand for trying to take a toy and then biting my boyfriend for trying to get him off the bed. We reached out to Christina because honestly she was the only one I could think of that I trusted enough to take him and work on him. We opted into a 2 week Board & Train Program at Paw’s & Obey HQ. She kept us up on pictures and videos everyday to keep us at ease and updated about how our boy was doing. The results were just amazing. He was a different dog when he came home. Although you have to keep up with the life style for the recommended amount of time for the training to really stick. Even after, some things should stay in place it is a life style. However, it is so much easier than what he previously was like. I fully reccomend Christina for anyone that has serious issues with their dog but is not willing to give up on them. She can help and she wants to help. It’s amazing! If you think there are no options and no way out other than giving up you are wrong! Do not give up on your loved one there is a better way and Christina will show you that way. Her work is definitely one of a kind and fully appreciated!
Ashley & Shane
I cannot imagine using anybody other than Paws and Obey Training. I adopted my dog, Rory Gilmore, when she was seven months old. She was super hyper and despite miles and miles of walks, would not calm down! She also had guarding issues and acted like she owned the couch. After a great deal of research, I reached out to Christina from Paws and Obey. She came to my house, did an assessment and outlined the different training possibilities. After just three training sessions, I noticed a great improvement in Rory. She listened better and was able to calm herself by being in place. In addition to training, Paws and Obey is my go-to boarder whenever I am going away because I know I am leaving Rory with someone who will give her the same love and care that I do. Rory Gilmore is a different dog after working with Christina!
Taylor & Nathan
Christina’s common sense approach to dog training has been useful, practical and made a significant impact on our Moses’s behavior. He responds more consistently to commands and I have become more confident leading him. Lots of trainers require you to buy into set packages for their services. Christina allows you to call on her when and where you see the need for training support. With her help, Moses is literally excited to be crated, easy going on walks and putting himself in “place” at times like family meals. Her expertise has made a big impact on my experience as a pet lover and owner. And as an added bonus, she boards as well! So, there are no setbacks in training when we go away-in fact, there’s an obvious honing in on skills when Mo comes home! Thank you, Christina-for your generous “heart” work in serving families with pets in their home, as well as those pets that are in need of a home!
The Sunkett Family
My husband and I have had the pleasure of adopting a dog through 4 Paws Dog Rescue of NJ, in which we had the pleasure of meeting Christina who is one of the Founders. We fostered our pup before adopting and it was a bumpy road in the beginning, but with the 4 Paws crew we got it under control. Until Nala’s demeanor changed and with being pregnant my husband became concerned with these challenges therefore we contacted Christina right away. Christina had our dog for a 3 week Board & Train Program and knowing our dog I was a bit skeptical to see if we would get to a place where we would feel comfortable. The tremendous turn around within those 3 weeks are so amazing, although Nala knows her commands Christina slowed them down for her and made sure she followed through, amongst much more that she worked on. Not only did she train Nala, but she also trained us to make sure we were doing our part as well. The whole 3 weeks we saw Nala’s improvement on social media and through updates, but we still thought we are going to get her back and she is not going to listen like that. I had to jokingly ask Christina if she returned the correct dog (because she was so calm and listening so well). We have seen a significant difference within our dog the moment she walked into our door and even now since we have gotten her back we are doing everything Christina has told us to and Nala is still doing incredible. We cannot wait to see Nala’s continued growth. Not only will Christina answer all and any of questions, we feel like we met a true friend throughout the process. Christina makes you feel so comfortable and I am glad we went with Paws & Obey Dog Training for multiple reasons. Nala can’t wait to go back for a refresher in the future.
The Foxhill Family
Stella & Riley
We adopted Stella & Riley a little over three years ago. We picked out one and when we went to pick her up we came home with two because we felt bad and we had suckers written all over us. We have had them since they were 8 weeks old and they are now three. We have had dogs before and never had any issues training them – so we didn’t think anything of it when we brought these two home. Plus, we thought our older lab would help with correction and show them the way….WRONG!!!! I was complaining lovingly about them to my vet and he was actually the one that led me to Paws & Obey/Christina and he never recommends anyone which says a lot.
When Christina first came over for a consult they were already 5/6 months old and already out of control. We lost all control over them and our older dog just let them walk all over her. They listened to Christina like she was the dog whisperer…after she left and we tried, well if dogs could laugh, then they laughed in our faces. But they were almost perfect every time she came over for a follow up. Not only were they out of control but they were scared of new people & Riley barked at everything outside as well as every animal, cartoon or not, on the tv and would try to go thru the tv via the tv stand. If they did know and like you, they would literally jump over chairs to get to you when you came over. Riley also became very dog specific. She had dogs she liked and dogs she didn’t like – however you didn’t know who they would be until she snapped at them. It was very random. And if they snapped back…well watch out because she didn’t back down. Since we also used Christina for boarding when we would go away, she would actually work them while she had them, and they would be great with her, but again when they came home they were back to being little loving out of control jerks. After one day of just constant barking from Riley and constant craziness from Stella I was just ready to go on vacation and not tell Christina when we were coming back. When I realized that I actually looked forward to vacation because I was actually getting away from them I knew that was a problem. I mentioned….ok complained…to Christina that it was just getting worse and worse with the barking and the snapping for Riley and the chewing and the just craziness in general for Stella. And I jokingly told her after our next vacation I just may not show up to pick them up when we get home. Knowing me and it being a possibility(not really, I would never do that) she suggested e-collar training. She came over and demo’d it on both of them & they responded really well to so she left it up to us if we wanted her to come to us or if we wanted to do the board & train option. We chose the one week board & train for each them at separate times. Mostly because our older dog always weaseled her way in while trying to work the other two and made it more crazy. The difference in both Stella and Riley after just one week each of the b&t is like night and day. My mom hasn’t been in my house for more than 5 mins since they were probably a year old because they were crazy but now she comes over for dinner and I even caught her sitting on the floor petting them. Most people would see them finally listening and following our commands as the major accomplishment and trust me it is. But, to me, the major accomplishment is that Riley no longer has play time with just Christina when she’s boarded there. She now plays with all the dogs and has no issues at all. That is like a miracle in and of itself.
Christina will love your dog as much as she loves her own. My dogs see her and still go crazy that’s how much they love her. They can’t wait to go with her when she comes to the house. So, if you are on the fence about training or think Christina’s prices are higher than other places, just remember this. Your dog stays in her house and she does the training in her house and works on things that your dog has issues with in a home environment. You can’t get that from a place that works many dogs when the dogs are kenneled. For example, If your dog is barking at an animal on the TV (Riley) then she will put animal planet on her tv and work with them. If you don’t want your dog on your furniture, then she will sit or have someone sit on her couch and make sure the dog understands no furniture allowed. If I ever decide to get another dog after these two I will definitely be calling Christina and setting up training as soon as possible.
Susan & Kris
I can’t say enough good things about Paws and Obey Dog Training. We were having problems with our dog, Utley. We rescued him at approximately 5 months of age. He was great for the first few months but then started to show aggression towards anyone that would come to our house. When he was approximately 10 months old, Christina was recommended to us. She did a very detailed consultation over the phone so she could have a good handle on Utley’s issues ahead of time. She came to the house to meet Utley and do some drills with him. He LOVED her right from the beginning. In order to get a clear picture of what our issues with Utley were, Christina had some of her rescue colleagues come to our house during a few of our sessions. She wanted to see first hand how he responded to new people and then come up with techniques we could use in everyday situations with him. Christina has worked with him and spent a great deal of time with him identifying what works well for Utley and what does not. Christina has gone above and beyond when it comes to our dog. It is amazing how much he has responded to her. She is always accessible for questions and advise if anything should arise. It has been very reassuring to know that we could always contact her if we needed.
She has definitely found her nitch. She is amazing with dogs and has a huge heart for our four legged friends. I believe that in order to be good at your job, you have to love what you do. There is no doubt in my mind that Christina is passionate about her profession and she is making a difference, one dog at a time.
The Pierson Family
Where do I begin, my pup Enzo did a one week Board and Train with Christina and he has become a different dog. Before his training he was “stranger danger” and very reactive on leash. Now I can actually walk him without him barking up a storm or zig zagging all over the place. He actually listens now, even in the most distracting environments. And last but not least, when your dog learns “place” from Christina it will change your life!!