Trisha and Michael with Buddy: Boxer in Lancing
Buddy came to us from rescue with little or no recall. His lead walking was not great either. He is a four years old boxer with a will of his own. Although not at all aggressive he was very excitable around other dogs. After struggling for some time we contacted Mike for help. He has helped us improve things although it is still a work in progress. Mike has given us the tools to improve his lead walking and his behaviour. It is not just the Buddy that needed training it was us too. Looking forward to continuing our sessions.
Helen with Johnny: Border Terrier in Brighton
Thank you for your help with Johnny, our border terrier. Johnny had started getting grumpy with other dogs and getting into a few tussles. Mike came up to Queens Park and spent an hour with us. I followed his advice and within a couple of weeks, Johnny was back to his old self. I always carry fresh chicken with me, let him greet other dogs, but then call him and treat him straight away with one instant and single praise of good boy.
I have recommended Mike to lots of other dog owners and I do also share his advice.
Deb and Derek with Rosie: Cocker Spaniel in Brighton
We had Rosie as a 9 week old puppy and as first time dog owners sought training almost from the start. However, despite trying 2 different trainers we were still struggling to control jumping up, recall and lead pulling. Mike was recommended to us by Barkers, our dog sitter and his calm confident approach from day one helped us as much as Rosie. He explained that while we were trying some techniques and doing O.K. we needed to work on our responses to Rosie’s good behaviour e.g. when she jumped up we were ignoring her, but not being quick enough to praise her or reward her in the correct way, or using the right tone of voice. We were being a bit too full on for her to understand us which lead her to be more excitable.
He started work straight away without too much preamble and understood that while we wanted a well behaved dog we did not want to change her character too much or lose her quirkiness. He was good at explaining what is important and what you can let go. Rosie is much better now at walking on the lead, we are working on her recall and we can mostly control her over exuberant jumping up when necessary.
We would both recommend Mike most highly, he is patient, kind and supportive, and will not hesitate to contact him again if we need to.
Barbara with Daisy: Golden Retriever in Hove
I contacted Mike just after collecting our 9 week old Golden Retriever Daisy as I had not had any previous experience of having a dog. We were very keen to make sure that we started the training correctly and Mike was so helpful. The initial session came at just the right time because I was beginning to worry that we had made the wrong decision in getting a puppy! Mike gave us very good practical advice that enabled us to enjoy training Daisy and to see actual progress. He has a calm, non-judgemental manner that inspires confidence. After three puppy training sessions we decided that we would like to continue with the structured training to ensure that we had a good foundation in place. Three further sessions focused on recall training and any day to day issues or questions that we had and we now feel so much more confident and are really enjoying our puppy.
I would absolutely have no hesitation in recommending Mike whether it be with a new puppy or with any issues that arise with an older dog.
Scott with Myrtle: Barak (Bosnian Hound) in Hove
Our dog walker had recommended Mike after we were having a few issues around our rescue dog Myrtle. Our main concern was her selective recall and her sporadic aggression towards other large dogs, in particular black dogs. We had 3 sessions with Mike in local parks, which gave Mike an opportunity to see her in a public domain. Mike was able to give us advice in recognising Myrtle's body language and then providing techniques in getting Myrtle's attention prior to any incidents occurring. He has encouraged the use of a long line/lead enabling us to have complete control of Myrtle in any given situation and work on her recall. He also gave some good suggestions of keeping Myrtle engaged with games and tricks for food rewards. He explained that working her brain was just as important has physical exercise.
It's early days for us but we are putting the recommendations and techniques into practice and learning how to read our dog. We are under no illusions that she is going to be most obedient dog in the world and listen to every command but with Mike’s techniques its enabled us to recognise her potential and development.
Bart with Bella: Jack Russell Terrier in Hove
I’ve had a few trainers for Bella and Mike’s been the most effective. The tips he gave me and the work we put in enabled me to enjoy my lovely terrier with attitude!
Ian with Earl: Cockapoo in Hove
We picked up Earl as a puppy of 9 weeks and he immediately changed the family dynamic. I think it was the humans that needed the training and Mike was brilliant at given all of us the tools and the confidence to manage the new addition… Earl and the family haven’t looked back and we have developed a repertoire of exercises and training games that keep Earl's busy brain engaged, active and developing.
It’s now really difficult to remember a time pre-Earl, thank you Mike!
Steven and David with Beckett: Terrier in Hove
Mike visited us three times to help us with our rescue terrier B. Mike was easy going and fun to work with, obviously knowledgeable and passionate about dogs and gave us lots of useful tips about helping our eccentric dog to settle in.
Mike helped us understand what B was thinking and what he wants and needs ('Dogs are attention seeking machines'), which has helped us all a lot.
Gemma and Stu with Barley: Cockapoo in Shoreham
Mike was recommended to us and we were keen to get in touch as he uses technique that do not involve punishment, for example a spray collar. Mike is very good at getting to know you and your dog, so as to understand what behaviour needs restoring/is troubling you and the dog.
Our cockerpoo is extremely needy and anxious and jealous natured. Mike has given us great techniques and games to help with this and they are definitely helping. Like anything, it takes time, (mainly to un-train yourself rather than the dog!) but it’s well worth sticking with. It’s also fun for you and your pet and the training is good bonding time.
We had 3 session, which we feel was well worth the value, I didn’t feel like we were on a stop watch either, and we will be in contact again when we need help with other situations that we would like advise on.
A massive thank you!
Mellany with Silver: Saluki cross in Shoreham
Mike came to help us train Silver with recall. After only three sessions, Silver was racing back to us when called. The results really helped our confidence in handling a puppy for the first time and we have continued to build on the training and advice that Mike gave us. He had a wonderful rapport with Silver, using a calm approach and positive reinforcement to train in a firm but gentle way. We felt very supported by him and it is good to know that he is there for us should any other training issues arise through Silver's life.
We can recommend Mike without hesitation
Pam with Sheamus: Bichon Frise in Hove
I contacted Mike for urgent help with Sheamus my 15 month Bichon Frise rescue dog who had behaviour problems as well as issues with recall and separation. Mike was wonderful, and quickly and patiently gave me the confidence to cope. We went for walks in the park, and worked on recall, and Mike helped me with tips for behaviour and separation. I now enjoy walks with Sheamus, he has changed completely.
Thank you Mike!
Helen with Sonny: Golden Retriever in Hove
We have the most gorgeous, loveable little Golden Retriever puppy named Sonny. I had problems walking him in the park and could not let him off the lead. Mike helped me so much and taught me how to recall him. Also even though he was a puppy he still pulled very strongly on the lead when walking him on the road. Mike showed me how much easier it was with a harness and it gave me much more control over him, therefore giving me a great deal more confidence out and about with Sonny.
Would definitely recommend Mike for any issues with dogs and will get in touch with him myself should there be any problems in the future.
Catherine with Stanley: Saluki / Lurcher in Brighton
Stanley is a Saluki / Lurcher and came to us from the RSPCA rescue centre at five months. As he had been born in a rescue centre, he was not trained in any way and hadn’t been off lead until he came to us. He was an excited bouncy Bambi-type creature - all legs and wiggle.
As absolute dog-novices, we contacted Mike and were delighted with how easy he made it for us to feel more confident with Stanley. Mike taught me, in one session, how to recall train him. I was amazed. He also taught Stanley to sit - within half an hour - and both these things - and more - have stuck.
Our 11 year old son has some additional needs, and Mike worked directly with him, with Stanley, to help Isaac develop confidence with our new family member.
Three sessions enabled our family - human and dog - to live happily together, and to teach each other how to have fun that we only guessed at before Stanley came along. Thanks Mike!
Hazel and Jo with Siren: Bulldog in Hove
We contacted Mike because our Bulldog was very nervous and we couldn’t get her out on her walks. Our Dog developed her nervous behaviour as she grew older, we think because she was very ill as puppy and spent a lot of time staying in the vets and has never liked traffic or loud noises.
Mike immediately saw what we were doing wrong with our coaxing and encouragement, which although well meant was over-whelming for her. Mike’s advice has lead to us completely changing our approach which produced results straight away. There are still some days where we do not get her out. However, mostly we are getting one good walk in a day and sometimes two which is a marked improvement. If you have tried continuously without success to do the best for your dog, as we have, but for some reason it hasn’t worked, always ask for help and I would not hesitate to recommend Mike.
Toni with Flash: Poodle in Portslade
We contacted Mike as our 18 month old Poodle Flash would run after joggers and people on bikes, jumping and barking at them. I was concerned that he would hurt someone or himself. His walks would make me feel very nervous and would be constantly looking around rather than enjoying our walk. After 3 sessions, we could see a big improvement in Flashes behaviour and rather than running after people he would look and ignore or simply just ignore. We are now enjoying a relaxing walk.
We wouldn't hesitate in contacting Mike again if any other issues arose or recommending him to other doggy owners.
Thank you so much for all your help!
Jordan with Doreen & Jeremy: Dachshunds in Hove
I got in touch with Mike after seeing his amazing testimonials because I was having problems with my female puppy, Doreen. She was the loveliest, most affectionate dog you could ever meet - until she spotted a small child.
Due to an unsettling incident with a little boy when she was very small she saw all children as a potential threat and would growl and bark whenever she saw one - both in and out of the house. My male puppy, Jeremy, would then helpfully join in, making walks something of a nightmare.
With Mike's help I was able to help Doreen feel more comfortable about being around kids and walking her has now become so much easier and more enjoyable. She is also a much calmer dog overall (apart from when Jeremy steals her chews).
Both of my dogs loved Mike and I really enjoyed working with him. I wouldn't hesitate to drop him a line again if I have any issues with my sausages in the future.
Linda & Mike with Cloughy: Golden Retriever in Hove
We contacted Mike as we were having recall issues with our golden retriever Cloughy.
Mike showed us how we could gain Cloughy's attention and how we had to be more interesting than whatever/ whoever Cloughy wanted to play with. Cloughy also had an incident where he was attacked by another dog which knocked our confidence with letting Cloughy off the lead but Mike helped us regain our confidence.
Mike is a very easy trainer to work with he trained 'us' well and I would highly recommend him.
Di with Cooper: Border Terrier x Jack Russell in Hove
I have 2 dogs, brothers 19 months old called Cooper and Bertie. I found Mike on the internet because I needed help with Cooper whilst out on our walks. From being such a cuddly, loving dog indoors he became the devil incarnate once his lead was put on-people, bikes and especially other dogs, no-one was spared from his barking and growling.
With Mike's patience and training walks are now much more pleasurable as I am following the tips and advice that Mike taught me.
So thank you Mike and it's good to know that you're on the end of the phone if I encounter any more problems.
Aimee with Buster: Mastiff cross in Brighton
I contacted Mike when my walks with Buster, our 16 month old Bullmastiff X rescue, were becoming increasingly stressful. He is such a strong and large dog I felt I was unable to keep him under control and ultimately safe. He would lunge at other dogs and at buses. When I took him to the park I didn't feel that I could allow him to interact with the other dogs or be let off his lead. Not to mention I'd been dragged frequently across the local fields by him!
When Mike met Buster for the first time I was immediately assured by his confidence and we were straight away out for a demo walk testing a new harness and lead setup that gave me much greater control. Mike was patient and encouraging over the next sessions and I can't believe how quickly I regained my confidence walking him again with Buster clearly enjoying the interaction and learning.
That has been the greatest result - Buster is really happy. He now plays with other dogs, he's getting used to buses and I love having the confidence to let him run free. Thank you so much Mike, you've transformed our walks.
Anna and James with Lorna: Cocker Spaniel in Shoreham
We had three sessions with Mike to help give our puppy Lorna the best start in her development. Mike was brilliant with Lorna and she took to him straight to away. Everything was tailored to Lorna's individual needs and the tips and advice he gave us has helped to make Lorna a wonderful dog to be around.
Mike not only played a significant part in Lorna's behavioural training but has also been very helpful with health and nutritional advice.
As a result of our training with Mike we are now able to enjoy walks with Lorna off the lead without her running off or jumping up at strangers.
It's great to know he is a phone call away if he we need any help with Lorna in the future!!
Liz and Jamie with Eddie and Lola: Cockapoos in Hove
We contacted Mike as we had several problems concerning the relationship between our 2 dogs. We have 2 cockapoos, Lola who is 6 years old and now Eddie, who is 11 months. Both are lovely dogs, very friendly with people and other dogs.
Around the time Eddie reached 6 months old he started to assert his dominance over Lola and this led to several spats between them. He also started to guard us and try to keep Lola away from us. If we gave them any treats he would try to snatch them away from Lola and again this caused them to fall out!
We were anxious to try and sort these issues out as the situation was becoming quite stressful. Mike came along to our home and was able to see for himself how they were interacting. He gave us strategies to remedy the food problem and that worked straight away. We now make sure they have distance between them when we give them treats and they eat their dinner in separate rooms. Very simple but very effective. We also reward Eddie every time we give Lola attention and he now realises that if she comes to us then he gets a treat. Mike also helped us to understand that the dynamics change with 2 dogs rather than one and we have altered our own behaviour towards them in certain circumstances which diffuses the stress that was affecting us all.
Mike also gave us good advice regarding other basics such as walking without pulling on the lead and travelling in the car. We would recommend him to anyone who needs help with their dog. He is very kind and patient (with us and the dogs!) and we wouldn't hesitate to call him again if the need arose.
Anita and Barry with Baxter: Labrador in Sompting
We contacted Mike after getting Baxter in order to assist us with some fundamental basic training. We were struggling with Baxter pulling on a walk, which for a strong dog became troublesome, stop his jumping up, help with socialising with other dogs and also help him integrate properly in the home as he proved a little slower in the uptake of toilet training and also his chewing habits. We also wanted to have a plan in mind on how to be in a position at a later date, where Baxter can be walked off the lead and have a strong recall.
Having Mike on a one to one basis meant every minute spent was on Baxter alone and what Baxter, and we, needed. It was nice, not only be taught how dogs behave (very unlike humans!!!) but also put it into practice at the same time. The results were amazing and pretty instant. We all have access to the internet and youtube but we found a large amount of conflicting advice on the internet. Having someone on hand, not only teach you and your dog but who understands that each dog is different, so in turn can tailor responses just for your dog was a real comfort. At no point were we made to feel that we hadn't done a good job to this point and we were very encouraged and reassured by Mike's advice and support. We continue to use Mike's methods and we'll no doubt use Mike again to top up our ongoing training of Baxter. I would wholeheartedly recommend Mike. Mike has been the person we can call on when we feel we feel we aren't making progress. Having that reassurance has been a major benefit and comfort to owning and training Baxter.
Lisa with Tia: Border Collie in Hove
I contacted Mike for help with Tia shortly after I rehomed her as she was showing aggression towards men, trying to herd the traffic, ripping up the house when I went out and various other things which were making it hard to manage with her.
Mike has been really great in our six sessions together and really helped to understand her behaviour, particularly the aggression which was my biggest worry. Like anyone struggling with their dog i trawled the internet for ideas and help and spoke to quite a few different people, driving myself a bit mad with all the conflicting ideas, but Mike was the most convincing and packed a lot of helpful information into our sessions, he was really able to fully explain his methods and the logic behind them. I have been using Mike's methods for a while now and there have been no miracles, this stuff takes time but we are definitely making progress and it is easier to be consistent when you feel you are on the right track.
Mike is a true dog lover and was kind to Tia and kind to me! I am really glad I consulted him and will continue to use all his advice as me and T move forward.
I contacted Mike to help with recall and general training, I have a Whippet puppy and wanted to make sure I was in control when I let him off the lead. I was feeling nervous about letting Otto run free after witnessing some frightening dog fights as a child, when we adopted a mistreated dog. More recently my parent's dog ran over the edge of a cliff so recall was my main concern. Mike's gentle approach was brilliant and helped build my confidence. We only had three sessions but by the time we finished, Otto was off the lead and returning to me whenever I called. I don't worry at all when we are out and know what to do should we encounter an aggressive dog.
I can't recommend Mike enough! I have a happy and contented dog and have received lots of praise for his perfect behaviour.
Rachel with Zephyr: Kelpie cross in Shoreham
I recently moved from the Australian outback to England with my Kelpie cross, Zephyr. He knew his basic commands but was used to lots of freedom and open space, so moving countries was a big change for him.
Mike helped us a lot. Leash walking was a problem so Mike showed me some simple techniques to make Zephyr walk alongside me, and it changed everything. Zephyr, with a few gentle reminders here and there, now walks beautifully on the lead. Zephyr's recall was hit-and-miss which worried me in a built up area. Mike showed me how to use my body language to encourage Zephyr to come to me, and to give him consistent commands and lots of praise during the process. I also wanted Zephyr to learn some assistance skills to help a disabled family member, and Mike has a lot of experience in this area. Using some commands the dog already roughly knew (like 'tug') Mike showed me how to teach Zephyr an amazing range of skills, including taking off my coat and undoing my zips; also getting his own lead, or the post, and picking up items I have dropped. He now uses these skills daily, just for fun!
Zephyr and I really benefited from Mike's expertise. He was generous with his time, really knew his stuff and was full of suggestions tailored to our specific situation. I would cheerfully recommend him to anyone with any dog issues.
Carrie with Bert: Border Terrier Cross in Hove
I contacted Mike to help me have more control over Bert. He is my daughter and son-in-law's dog, but I was due to look after Bert whilst they were on holiday. Bert is 18 months old, and very cheeky and lovable, but would not come back when called, wouldn't drop a ball, could be aggressive towards other dogs, especially certain breeds when on the lead and would pull on the lead. Mike calmly taught Bert to walk nicely by my side, and in a couple of lessons on a long lead taught Bert to want to come back to me. I have learned how to avoid a bad situation with other dogs and we as a family are practicing these techniques, which have really helped with Bert's behaviour. We are working on getting him to drop the ball in a game, and he is beginning to "get it", though it's against his terrier instincts. We are due to have a family session with Bert soon to reinforce Bert's good behaviour, and Mike is there if we need any more help.
I would totally recommend Mike to help with a dog's (and owner's) behaviour, he is brilliant.
Rosie and Alex with Belsey: Bedlington Terrier in Brighton
We contacted Mike to help us with our first puppy, Belsey, we have a three-year-old daughter and could see within the first week that this was going to bring some challenges. He focused originally on the toddler/puppy relationship - Belsey was mouthing, jumpy and agitated around her. Mike gave us some great techniques and within 24 hours of his first visit Belsey was much calmer. For other training - lead walking, crate training, recall, socialisation - we needed lots of support. And during the following months Mike gave us detailed advice and instruction for each problem as it came along. We really enjoyed the sessions, Belsey was improving and it was fun! Mike was able to see, more clearly than we could, what training would help Belsey be a good dog for us - a gentle, family dog. We are very grateful so heartily recommend him. He guided us well and Belsey is a delight.
Sophie with Chiro: Cocker Spaniel in Hove
Our request for training from Mike was for our new cocker spaniel puppy; full of fun and bounce, was for recall and lead walking to enable my disabled son to have a chance to take her for a walk. She responded well to the recall techniques taught and when out now at 18months her amazing recall is often commented on by other fellow spaniel owners. I would also say perseverance with lead walking techniques taught has been a slow process, although not always perfect; Chiro is a delight to take out on the lead, I am still chatting to her along the way! .. and as for my son walking her, difficult 'on the lead walking' but she has fun out with him with his hand cycle and is happy to trot along beside his wheelchair, another part of our training with Mike, So what I am saying is, Mike taught us life long lessons to have a dog that we can all take out as a family, she really is a delight so thank you Mike for those valuable lessons.
Sara and Mark with Milo: Cockapoo in Brighton
Mike helped us take ownership of our dog Milo, aged four, who we'd inherited from a friend. It was the family that needed the training, not really the dog, who was already pretty well behaved. As there are five of us we needed to learn to treat Milo with reasonable consistency. The training enabled us to maximise the pleasure we take in our dog - thrilling the kids by the tricks they were able to train Milo in. And we all gained a greater confidence in taking Milo out, knowing Mike had schooled us in the basics.
Mike comes highly recommended.
June and Mike with Keira: Labrador in Shoreham
Mike has been absolutely brilliant with helping us and our beautiful charcoal Labrador puppy Keira - recommending and using the correct equipment, for example - a lead that helps to prevent Keira from pulling when out walking with us - this has been a great help to us. Mike also explained and showed us what to do when Keira was jumping up for attention. She has improved so much in this too. We were so nervous about letting Keira off lead in the park, but Mike taught us that with the correct training she will be fine. She is such a sociable dog both with other dogs and humans alike and Mike has given us the confidence to let her off lead to play with other dogs - this has now become part of her daily routine which she loves. Keira bonded with Mike on her very first session with him and we could not have asked for better training from someone who is obviously passionate about helping both dog and dog owners to achieve the very best results.
We would highly recommend Mike for any breed of dog. He has had so much experience and this comes across immediately in his training sessions. We can't thank him enough.
Dave and Maja with Lilith: Border Collie cross in Brighton
Lilith is a collie / labrador / husky cross. We are both well versed with dogs having had them since we were children, however each dog is by its own nature different. With the above mix there are many traits and quirks from each breed, which brings its own set of problems!
Mike was a great guide in teaching mostly how to deal with her personality quirks, after three weeks Lilith has significantly improved in several key areas that were the biggest problem. Mike also offered us some techniques to keep her mind occupied in both play and training. The training provided is as much for the human as it is for the dog, so you will learn a great deal as well during the sessions! It is of course important to that you keep up the rules or the hard work will have been for nothing.
We will definitely engage Mike again should we need further help!
Clara with Ralf: Tibetan Terrier cross in Hove
Behind his cute exterior, Ralf can be a serious handful and as he matured this developed into frequent shows of aggression against other dogs, lots of barking, and chasing any and all humans on wheels (including motorbikes). I had reached a point where I dreaded taking him out of the house and could rarely let him off the lead. Over a period of around six months, Mike patiently helped me to transform Ralf's behaviour through helping me understand where it was coming from, and giving me practical techniques to slowly change it for the better. Walking Ralf changed from being a dreaded ordeal to an enjoyable and focused exercise where I could see improvements from day one. Now, we enjoy our walks immensely. We still have the odd minor 'incident', but I've now learned how to foresee potential trouble and respond in a way that calms rather than exacerbates the situation. Ralf's safely off the lead every day, even in busy places with plenty of other dogs around, and enjoys playing with other dogs. We definitely would not have been able to achieve this without Mike's amazing help and understanding. I cannot recommend Mike highly enough.
David and Bex with Murray: Bichon / Schnauzer cross in Brighton
Mike has been brilliant with helping our dog Murray with a few areas (separation anxiety, children and walking nicely on the lead). Murray has come on leaps and bounds since the training sessions and is much more confident now. Will definitely be booking some more sessions when we move flat! Thank you! David, Bex, and Murray.
Rachael with George: Cocker Spaniel in Brighton
Mike has been a real help to me with my cocker spaniel George. Since moving to Hove he has been really unsettled, and had developed some behavioural issues that I needed help and guidance with. Mike has a fantastic way with George, he is very calm and I could tell that George was immediately at ease and comfortable around him. Mike explained a lot about dog behaviour which has really helped me to understand how George is thinking. We have done some Behaviour training indoors and also on a training line. I strongly recommend Mike - he has really helped both George and I.
John with Alice: Labrador cross in Southwick
I got Alice, a Labrador cross, from a rescue centre and as a new dog owner I was rather nervous and anxious. I found Mike to be excellent. His understanding of the dog, and the owner, was amazing. After three sessions the pleasure from being with Alice just got a lot better.
Tracey with Lola and Louis: Boxers in Brighton
I have two beautiful boxers Louis aged 4 and Lola aged 2. Louis is what I actually believe to be an angel sent down from above but Lola on the other hand is very "high spirited", well thats what I like to call it anyway!!!!!
Mike spent three sessions with the three of us and during that time he shared with me some great doggy and owner tips and showed me how to better communicate with Lola so that we are now all very happy at home and when we are out I can keep Lola safe. What Mike taught me made an almost immediate and dramatic change but it was also really easy stuff that I continue to do with Lola myself.
Thank you Mike from Tracey, Louis and Lola x
We simply cannot thank Mike enough! To say Darcy, our 7 year old rescue springer spaniel, had a few issues was a massive understatement. He was never walked and just kept indoors 24/7 in his previous home. As a result he was very anxious, extremely dog reactive and developed shadow chasing. He also had no concept of lead walking.
Luckily we found Mike! He clicks with Darcy in a way that only those very experienced with dogs, especially rescue ones, can. He is also very hands on and patient in the training sessions. Best of all the sessions were always enormous fun.
With Mike's help and support, Darcy is now a well adjusted city dog, enjoying chillaxing in cafes all over the city, long hiking sessions in the South Downs; daily off lead run in parks, as well as getting his paws wet on the beach!
Darcy could not have come this far without Mike's excellent training. We are certainly very grateful and will recommend Mike to anyone who wants to have a meaningful relationship with their dogs.Read Darcy's original testimonial from 8 months earlier.
Andy with Sarge: Border Terrier in Brighton
We called Mike after getting totally exasperated with the behaviour of our lovely Border Terrier, Sarge. Since moving to Brighton he had taken to chasing and trying to attack joggers, which is far from ideal, and not very helpful given our location. We had visited another company who offered training that we found not only exhausting but also unsuccessful. Mike brought calm and hope immediately to us all. He quickly assessed the situation, and within the first session had made a dramatic change. We are now proceeding with his teachings and must say the results have been spectacular.
Thanks Mike and I am sure a big thanks from the joggers of Brighton.
Dionne with Molly: Pug in Brighton
Me and my partner had little to no experience in training a puppy and so when we adopted Molly, we wanted to make sure we were doing everything as best as we could. We quickly learnt that everyone who owns a dog (or even in some cases...don't!) is a self-proclaimed dog training expert and we were receiving conflicting advice left right and centre.
After a few weeks I did some research and enlisted the help of Mike. We quickly learnt that me and my partner needed just as much training as Molly! For example, our reactions, body language and tones of voice were all things that we needed to really be aware of when around Molly as these all greatly affected her training and development.
Mike has given us some invaluable tips and advice and we literally don't know how we would be coping if we hadn't found him!
I would highly recommend Mike to anyone with a new puppy or dog.
Pam with Bert: Border Terrier in Brighton
Bert is a lovely gentle and affection dog but was always feisty when meeting other dogs in the street barking and straining at the lead, he was also prone to jumping at everyone who came into the house, including us. He would also bark at joggers and anyone on a bike!
After a couple of sessions with Mike one at home and one at the park Bert is a reformed character he is now walking well and mostly ignoring every dog and cyclist we pass.
I would recommend Mike to anyone who is having problems he has a calm approach and completely understood our problems and having taken and followed his advice life with Bert is now even more amazing than it was before. Mike is also always at the end of a phone or e-mail if we need him.
Sophie with Lola: Labrador cross in Brighton
Lola is a Labrador cross who we rescued from Spain when she was one years old. Although she had generally settled in pretty well with the family and our other dog, she was increasingly nervous around other dogs. She would often bark at other dogs and was generally unpredictable around them.
Mike was very calm and patient with both Lola and me. He has a kind and gentle manner and was very encouraging. He had lots of advice and tips for us to try out, as well as exercises that we could practise on our own.
I would highly recommend Mike to anyone who needs help or advice with their dog.
Nick and Mel with Mabel: Cockapoo in Hove
Mabel, our red cockapoo puppy was a new addition to our family late last year. Wanting the best for her and us, we looked into to a one-to-one dog behaviourist. We turned to Mike, who has been an inspiration to us in training Mabel. He explains his training techniques and started off with basic commands and over the weeks everything came together. Our biggest concern was the 'recall' and Mike put us at ease. Mabel obeys our commands which is fantastic as we can now enjoy long walks off the lead knowing she won't get up to mischief. Mike is calm and relaxed in his training approach which put us and Mabel at ease.
We are still working with Mike and plan to continue the training for the foreseeable future.
We highly recommend Mike, he's taught us so much in how to teach Mabel. We are unaware we are even teaching her now as so much play is involved.
Dominic with Charlie: Cockapoo cross in Brighton
We had taken Charlie our cockapoo x Jack to puppy school and agility. Though after six months we were still struggling with him. We both had dogs before which were very well behaved, so figured we knew it all and had bought a faulty dog! Mike showed us everything we were doing wrong with Charlie and reacting to his behaviour incorrectly. Once we learnt why Charlie was behaving like he was and that every dog has its own personality we changed the way we reacted to his behaviour. We have made huge progress with Charlie thanks to Mike and he is now a cheeky puppy rather than a pain! We are now completely confident with him off a lead and aware how to diffuse his tantrums quickly and calmly.
Ian and Rod with Whoopi: Terrier cross in Brighton
Whoopi is a lovely girl with lots of character and energy. She'd had a few issues and we were struggling as no sooner did we crack one thing than there was another behaviour that we hadn't experienced before. We'd done all of the things that were recommended in terms of socialisation and basic training but we were getting quite worried about her behaviour on and off the lead and becoming frustrated with her and ourselves.
Mike was recommended to us by a dog walker and from the initial telephone conversation he was fantastic in offering reassurance that he could help train us to train Whoopi. Mike's advice and instruction was invaluable and he helped us think about things from Whoopi's perspective rather than ours, as we were often being reactive to her behaviour. Thankfully, with Mike's expertise and him spending time out with us and Whoopi, things have improved enormously and we're now able to enjoy walking her off the lead again without stress or the fear of losing her.
We called on Mike again very recently due to some new issues with Whoopi and his advice was, once again, extremely helpful with things improving considerably for her in just over one week!
We'd have no hesitation in recommending Mike. He clearly understands dog behaviour incredibly well and better still, he explains it in a way that helps you understand your own dog.
Edina with Fideo: Cocker Spaniel in Brighton
Before our training with Mike I felt very upset and anxious about how badly we have been coping with Fidel. As first time owners with no experience we did not release what we were doing when we got a working cocker spaniel. We tried training her when she was a puppy without success and she became more and more disobedient and destructive. I was very skeptical that Mike could help us with Fidel but I was very surprised by how much sense things Mike said to us made, and how Fidel responded to the training. Mike has provided us with a hope that we just might be ok and learn how to help our energetic doggy. She has made very good progress and we are planning to have Mike again in the near future for the next steps in hers and our development.
Debby with Ruby: Jack Russell Terrier in Shoreham
I have had the pleasure of being the main human in Ruby's life for the past 6 years, since she found me at Dogs Trust. She is very affectionate and reasonably well behaved. Her shortcomings, however, include chasing motorbikes (or indeed anything that she feels may be one in disguise, such as a garden strimmer) and the relentless hunting of anything small and furry, even if it means getting stuck down a rabbit hole. Having worked around these issues for many years, a house move made me address them. I Googled dog behaviourists and found Mike at Rainbow Dogs. I am so glad I did. He is kind (both to the dogs and their owners - I was fearing at least some rebuke!), gentle and the advice he gives simply makes sense, so it is easy to follow and impossible to ignore. The training is also fun for both of us and makes our walks more interesting!
Pia with Kalle: Welsh Terrier in Hove
Kalle is a big softy when indoors but outside he was quite feisty with other dogs and always on the lookout at the windows for dogs to bark at. I was also concerned about his recall. I was quite anxious taking him out as I didn't really know what to do. I looked up Dog Behaviourists on Google and discovered Mike and Rainbow Dogs. Mike came around and after following his advice about covering some of the windows Kalle was a different calmer dog. Mike gave me some training tips to work on and other suggestions. These proved to have immediate results and Kalle became much better out and about when seeing other dogs. Over the three sessions we had Kalle is a delight to take out. We are constantly working on the advice and suggestions Mike has passed on. Mike was very popular with Kalle and this made me very confident in the advice he was giving me. I cannot think of a better behaviourist to go to. He was gentle, patient and extremely knowledgeable. I would highly recommend him to anyone.
Dan and Gabrielle with Bella: Jack Russell Terrier cross in Hove
There is no shortage of advice when you get your first puppy, from other dog owners, self proclaimed trainers and even people who used to have dogs, they all approached us and gave us free advice. Not that we asked... Almost all advice we got was conflicting with what someone else had said. Because of this we turned to Mike of Rainbow Dogs.
Mike appeared more qualified and experienced than the other offers we saw. In just three sessions Mike showed us how to train our little Bella into a confident, obedient and lovely little dog. Everything he said made complete sense and yes, it was conflicting with all previous advice we had from other owners.
Even over the phone Mike's straight forward advice just worked instantly and just couldn't be argued with. We couldn't recommend Mike more as a trainer, no matter what dog you have, he will help you to a happy and obedient dog.
Justine with Biggles: Springer Spaniel in Hove
I was experiencing severe behavioural problems with my dog and feared I would have to rehome him. However, after my first session with Mike, my dog's behaviour drastically improved and I felt confident I would be able to keep him. Our biggest achievement was training my dog to return when called. Now my dog can finally run off lead and I can see how much happier he is as a result of this. My previous experience of working with a dog trainer (with a different dog) wasn't positive, I was snapped at for unknowingly making mistakes. I was dubious about working with a trainer after this. However, Mike was friendly, polite and encouraging at all times and I would strongly recommend him.
Niki with Missy and Scamp: Jack Russell Terriers in Portslade
Mike was really good at helping me understand the patterns of behaviour and the individual needs of my 2 parson Jack Russell Terriers.
Missy (2 years) came to me when she was 19 months old she was also 3 weeks pregnant. Having had two previous homes and very minimal training she was extremely nervous around people especially men. She would not receive affection and would choose to be on her own. When out on walks I wanted to give her the exercise she so desperately needed however she had no recall and would come back when she was ready and not on command.
Scamp (Missy's puppy) although a very confident and affectionate puppy also required obedience training. Walks were not enough to satisfy his restlessness.
Although I had had a dog previously, I had allowed it to rule the roost and did not want to repeat the same mistakes, especially as I now had two dogs. Therefore I knew the training was as much for me as it was for Missy and Scamp.
Mike first visited the home to assess my relationship with Missy and Scamp also to see them in their own environment. We went for walks in the park to see how they interacted with other dogs / people and to test their recall (of which for Missy there was none).
Mike showed me how to make training interesting, fun and stimulating which was very good for both dogs but especially Scamp helping to curb his restlessness.
Surprisingly the results were very quick - both dogs were very responsive to the training. I now have two dogs that have really good recall. Through patience and understanding Missy is now a more confident and affectionate dog. Scamp less restless and is shortly going to attend agility training for further stimulation. Both dogs appear very settled and content.
Mike's patience with both myself Missy and Scamp paid off!
Thank you Mike!
Debbie with Tilly: Poodle cross in Brighton
I had taken Tilly to obedience classes but at 18 months I was still struggling to control her desire to chase and her over reaction when she couldn't. I contacted Mike having read his website as I realised I needed one to one help to understand and address this, the variety of advice from websites and dog owners was confusing and not working! From the first meeting Mike helped me understand her better and gave practical and simple instructions to deal with behaviours at home and then later this helped when he came to the park and the beach. I highly recommend Mike, he listens and doesn't judge (even when I'd created a problem!) and we've had some immediate changes as well as those I'm still working on. I've always loved Tilly, and now we're both enjoying our outings.
Mike has been an absolutely invaluable source of support and guidance working with Darcy, our rescue dog. We would highly recommend Mike to anybody who is considering or already has a rescue dog and would like to develop a fun and rewarding relationship with their dogs.
When we decided to give a home to a rescue dog, we spent months researching on the internet and talking to / visiting various rescue centres, but were soon overwhelmed by the vast number of dogs available, all with their individual history, not to mention the often conflicting and simplistic advice available.
We decided to ask Mike to help not only because of his experience with rescue dogs but also because he was one of the few trainers able to help potentials owners in the selection process. After a very detailed discussion, he helped us identify the qualities we should be looking for, and also gave us advice on how best to approach the rescue centres. We were most impressed with his in-depth knowledge of rescue dogs and also willingness to listen.
Since Darcy joined us, Mike has been helping us work with Darcy, from introducing him to the resident cat to addressing his dog-aggressive issues. Mike is very patient; hands-on and has a deep reserve of knowledge to draw from no matter what the issues are. He has an instant rapport with Darcy and you can see changes in Darcy's behaviour immediately. He also trains us to be good and responsible owners with simple but sensible advice, much of it can only come from a long experience in working with rescue dogs.
We cannot thank Mike enough for helping us understand Darcy and would not hesitate to recommend him to any (potential) dog owners who want a friendly, professional and effective trainer who truly understand how to communicate with rescue dogs and their owners alike.Read Darcy's updated testimonial from 8 months later.
Sue and Molly with Mimi: Pekingese cross in Shoreham
Mimi is our first dog and a typical stubborn Pekingese, we had previously been to a few puppy classes but with no real successes. Mike tailors his help and advice to your dog's strengths and weaknesses is patient not only with Mimi but all our questions as well. Mimi took to Mike immediately, she has gone from a puppy who couldn't walk on a lead, refused recall and couldn't walk past a dog without barking, to a wonderfully behaved little dog. Mike has been an incredible help to us we could not recommend him enough.
Penny and Mathew with Mango: Labrador in Shoreham
We contacted Rainbow Dogs when our Labrador puppy, Mango, was 8 weeks old and Mike came to see us at home a week later. His approach is completely dog-centred which we liked. He explained to us how to read our dog's expressions and body language which helped us to understand what she needs. His instructions and explanations were simple and straightforward which made training much easier for us and for Mango! After three sessions at our house, we took Mango out to the beach and Mike helped us to train her to recall when called, show her how to sit at the edge of the road before crossing, walk nicely beside us, and socialise with other dogs. His training techniques have been very successful and we are very grateful to Mike for making our transition into being dog owners so much easier and rewarding than it would have been without him.
Dee and Crispin with Phoebe: Chihuahua in Hove
We were recently adopted by an eight week old female Chihuahua, Phoebe, and after reading Mike's website we asked him to help us adjust to our new responsibilities. With such a small dog (about 1kg at the time) our main concern was safe socialisation, which Mike emphasised was essential if we wanted Phoebe to be a confident and happy dog.
At first we couldn't even imagine being able to let her meet dogs several times her size off-lead in a park, but Mike built up our, and her, confidence with a series of walks and progressive amounts of 'freedom'. Currently Phoebe is running around happily on a long loose line and has been having reassuringly uneventful encounters with all sorts of adult dogs and people. It's been great to have both our needs and Phoebe's met in such a calm and warm manner.
Mike has also taught us to speak and think 'dog' which has been amazingly helpful in getting our bright and feisty puppy to understand what we want her to do and not do, in and outdoors. This has included training commands, housetraining, bite inhibition, walking to heel, recall, feeding - in fact Mike has had useful suggestions for everything we've worried about or wanted to know - and then a few extra. We're very grateful and Phoebe adores his visits too.
Emma with Sparky: Whippet cross in Hove
We read various trainers websites before we called Mike. We found his background at Battersea Dogs Home a strong recommendation. It was our first puppy so we were really keen to set good patterns of behaviour early so we could all enjoy living together. Mike was great at listening to all our worries and projections of what might or might not be happening in Sparkie's brain. He helped us learn how to send clear messages and gave us the confidence we needed. We then also asked Mike to come with us for Sparkie's first trip to the park. Again this really helped us establish good patterns of how to meet other dogs and other people. I'm sure we will be seeing Mike again at other key points in Sparkie's training.
Emma with Bamse: Saint Bernard / Newfoundland cross and Moomin: French Bulldog cross in Hove
My partner and I were incredibly pleased with the help Mike gave us. We had two fighting male dogs - one 60kgs heavier then the other and Mike immediately knew how to handle the situation. His instructions were clear and worked quickly for us. Mike also kept in touch regularly to see how the dogs were doing which was great. He was on hand to give us advice whenever we needed it. Thanks to Mike, we now have a calm and happy household again.
Angela with Lucy: Jack Russell Terrier in Porstlade
When I saw Mike's details on the web I decided to contact him as I felt my puppy, Lucy, was almost out of control. Her main problems were her over enthusiastic welcome when people came into the house. Within 1/2 an hour of Mike talking with Lucy she was already much calmer. My next problem was her barking immediately she heard another dog in the garden. Mike gave me a few tips and although she isn't perfect it is a little better. Mike suggested we went out to the park to see how she was on a long line. She was quite good on recall but this has improved dramatically and returns 99% of the time. Again Mike gave me tips on how to make her play in the park more enjoyable. I now let her off the lead as I have the confidence she will return when I call her.
Throughout the sessions spent with Lucy, Mike remained calm, patient and kind. He also took into consideration the fact that I have two other Jack Russell cross dogs which was so helpful.
I would have no hesitation in recommending Mike to train your dog. He was professional, and has an affinity with dogs through his calm personality.
Julie with Darcy: Dalmatian in Brighton
Just want to say big thank you for Mike's help with my puppy Dalmatian Darcy. Mike came to see us as our puppy is suffering from anxiety and separation. I was unable to leave him in a crate or a room without him whining and barking. Mike spoke to us and showed us lots to do with the training and there is improvement. And he also talked about a whole range of other things. Would definitely recommend him.
Tessa with Gertie: Wheaten Terrier in Hove
We asked Mike to come and see us about Gertie, our 4 year old Wheaten Terrier as we wanted some way of curbing her exuberant jumping up on everyone. Mike really understands how dogs think and he gave us some excellent strategies to practise - he was very patient with Gertie and clearly had loads of experience. He kept in touch to see how she was getting on.
Rachel with Baxter and Maggie: Border Terrier Crosses in Hove
Having adopted two rescued terriers which we allowed to rule the roost for a week, we felt it was time to call in some help. We chose Mike due to his extensive background and work with rescued dogs and we felt he would understand the issues we would face.
After just one session, we were back in control. Mike was calm and patient and made us realise that it's about training us as much as it is about training the dogs. We went from having two manic, totally un-housetrained dogs who didn't know their place, to two happier, calmer dogs who know their position in the household - and who are almost fully housetrained!
Not only that, but Mike has continued to stay in touch. He genuinely cares about you and your dogs and the progress that you make. I have already recommended him to a friend and will continue to do so. We will carry on working with Mike in the future as issues arise during Baxter and Maggie's development.
Amanda with Bramble: Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier in Brighton
Me and my partner have never had the responsibility of training a dog until our wonderful fluffy bundle of puppiness, Bramble. We really wanted to get things right for her. Looking for someone who could teach us, it was clear from the initial phone call that Mike was going to be brilliant - great common sense advice and reassurance, with a lot of emphasis on the wonders of positive reinforcement (aka 'treats'!) and how a dog understands its world. Mike's psychology background and vast experience working with dogs clearly stands him in good stead, as do his inherent dog and people skills. He has been fantastic with us and continues to be so; from visiting us in our home to train us on how to work with Bramble on the basics and nip in the bud emerging issues, to teaching us on our first park and street walks and giving us lots of his time and patience. Mike is our 'go-to' for advice that you just don't get in any book and has given us the confidence to trust the bond that Bramble has with us. She was immediately calm with him (having got over excited about everyone else who visited) and, importantly, so were we. Mike very swiftly sussed out that the different characters of me and my partner were encouraging different reactions from her and through the consistent approaches Mike's taught us this has now really started to shift, with much less manic playful biting of my partner (much to his relief). We've had such a great experience with Mike that we will definitely be continuing to use his services (for which Bramble is very grateful!) and highly recommend him to all dog owners. Beyond how helpful it is, it's been a lot of fun and we've really enjoyed the time Mike's spent with us. Hearing about the work he's done with us a friend said 'sounds like everyone with a dog should have this training'... we'd go so far as to say 'everyone with a dog should have a Mike!'.
Ros with Milly: Airedale Terrier
Mike did a great job in sorting out recall problems with an independently minded terrier. He was very patient (with both dog and owner) , worked with my dog at home and came out on walks to make sure that I understood how to apply the principles and how to adjust things if necessary. You can tell he has had lots of experience and obviously loves dogs! I would thoroughly recommend him.
Simon with Algy and Ethel: Pugs
Mike has been a great help with puppy training and obedience, and then with settling in a rescued puppy farm dog. It goes without saying that he is very familiar with canine ways, and combined with a calm and patient approach, is suited to anyone and their four-legged companions.
Julie with Peppa: Spaniel / Border Collie Cross
When I went to get Peppa, I was overwhelmed: she was a rescue dog and my first dog!
The RSPCA had told me that: Peppa had lived in an open house with 10 other dogs and that the lady taking care of them was living in her car, Peppa just had two puppies who were being adopted, Peppa was not enjoying walks as she was petrified with human beings,... On the journey back, Peppa, who is such a quiet, shy and gentle dog, nearly had us killed many times: chewing three leads, barking and jumping on me to escape from the closed window... she was terrified and so was I! I knew I had to call for help!
I found Mike on the web. I liked the fact that he had so much experience with rescue dogs and that he could do home visits as Peppa was clearly not adapting to humans and spent a few nights in the garden after escaping twice in the first week because of fireworks.
When Mike came to visit us, I watched him interacting with Peppa and loved the fact that he respected her by not harassing her. On the contrary, he was very calm and she just watched us talking without panicking or trying to run away. It was a first! Then Mike, who realised that Peppa 'was not going to be an easy case', taught us basic notions. You can find a lot of information in books, on the web, but Mike was able to help us by giving us tailor-made advice: in Peppa's case, find what treat she would like, let her come to us, do not stare at her, stay home for a week before taking her often for walks in the park on a long lead to build up her confidence... And after a few sessions, Mike noticed that Peppa was coming to us for reassurance and / or for a piece of cheese. It was huge progress! With lots of love, time and following Mike's basic rules, Peppa is now the best pet ever! It took us a long time to establish that trust, but it is now solid. The other dog owners in the park are still saying what a different dog she is from when she arrived... I am so proud of Peppa! With Mike's help, Peppa's adoption is a success!
I have recommended Mike to many dog owners since.
I forgot to mention that my husband was not keen (you can ask Mike, it is an understatement!) and now... he walks Peppa himself!
Sydney with Dolly: Bichon Frise
We can only say that Mike's training was essential to our understanding of dog behaviour. He was a calm presence for us when it came to training our lovely Bichon Frise. We learned that it could be as simple as a few clear commands with a reward for Dolly. It wasn't work to train her but a fun way to create a bond with this lovely animal that lives in our lives.
Thank you Mike.
Richard with Luigi: Pug
We have a lively, high-spirited pug who we needed help with - as Luigi is our first dog we wanted to get the basics right and Mike was great [and very patient] in showing us these. I think he helped to train us as much as he trained Luigi. Luigi is still lively and high-spirited but we are much better able to manage him now after Mike's help. I would definitely recommend Rainbow Dogs and Mike.