Lucy | Fairfax

December-04-2018 Bark busters rating

Tommy was phenomenal. The techniques he taught us have changed my 2 stubborn dachshunds' behavior dramatically. I waited to write this review to be sure the behavioral changes lasted and they have. We still have to work with them, as Tommy instructed, but their behavior improvement and our ability to control them is striking.

AggressionBarkingRecall

Sydney | Fairfax

November-27-2018 Bark busters rating

If I could give more than 5 stars I would!!! I've never tried dog training before but I am beyond pleased with Tommy and all he has been able to offer us. Well worth the investment for greater peace in your own home!! My training needs: My situation with my dogs is quite complex. I have not one, not two, but THREE beagles! They are all between 2 and 4 years old, so they were a little bit 'set in their ways'. Beagles are not the most obedient breed but with Tommy we were shocked at their ability to learn! My dogs were not having simple training issues like chewing on household items or peeing in the house -- their issues were more behavioral like: barking at movement, barking at strangers or guests in our home, barking for food or scratching cabinets for (demanding) food, being possessive of spaces in our home (couches, beds etc), some aggression between the two boy dogs, and always being under our feet (this can be quite dangerous with three dogs always one step away from tripping you up!). Tommy's solutions: After one session with Tommy my dogs behaviors have totally changed, its like night and day! There were so many things that were just ideal about Tommy's training interventions. First, he comes to you. I think this is such a huge plus because for my dogs, anxiety and strangers is an issue. It wouldn't make sense to take them to a new environment where their training can't be retained because they are so distracted by fear, strangers, or other animals. Second, Tommy trains YOU not your dogs. Tommy doesn't do all these tricks with treats or clickers to get your dogs to behave and then just leaves. He observes your dogs and starts to tell you all the behaviors you can engage in to address every single situation you are facing with your pet. Throughout the session, you are doing the work and the commanding. Third, he didn't just come over and address one or a few of the things you might have mentioned to him -- he really takes the time to tackle all problems (big or small) that you are seeing with your dogs. Fourth, Tommy doesn't force you to make any changes to your lifestyle or your procedure with your animals. If your dog is allowed on furniture, kenneled vs. not kenneled etc, this doesn't matter to Tommy. He really works to teach you how to handle your dogs in the way you prefer, not in some prescriptive, rigid format. Moreover, he assigns you 'homework' to continue practicing with your dogs after he leaves, but it isn't something so strenuous that you have to change your lifestyle (take time off work, carve out an hour of your day for more training etc). Finally, he is just an overall friendly and patient guy. I know the idea of a stranger coming to your home may seem uncomfortable at first, but Tommy really put me and my mom at ease during this training. Overall, I would absolutely recommend Tommy to anyone who has considered seeking a dog trainer. I went back and forth on whether or not this would work and I'm ultimately glad I took the chance on training. I read his reviews (I found Tommy through googling trainers in the area) and thought they all looked nice but that my situation was so much more complex. I really thought "this is going to be the case that Tommy can't fix" -- I mean, three beagles who normally bark endlessly at strangers (among all their other issues) is quite a challenge. I was certainly wrong, and Tommy was more than able to address all our needs. If Tommy can handle my situation and my three crazy dogs, I'm sure he could help you in yours.

AggressionBarkingJumping upSibling rivalry

Kyle | Fairfax, Fairfax (city)

November-02-2018 Bark busters rating

I want to start by saying that this is only the second time that I’ve ever left an online review for a service, product, restaurant, etc. but Tommy deserves it. We adopted our dog back in April of this year knowing that it would be more challenging to train her than usual. She was a 2 ½ year old stray German Shepard/lab/husky/every other breed imaginable who had just had puppies. We were having trouble getting her to stop pulling on a leash and to listen when we were outside, especially with other dogs present. Tommy came over and taught us how to get her in the mindset of “my people are in control of everything” and keep her calm before she gets fired up and desperately trying to get to the other dogs. We’ve since been able to get her to walk at our side with no pulling, and have made tremendous progress in only a few days with other dogs and getting better everyday.

AggressionPullingRecall

Connie | Manassas

October-26-2018 Bark busters rating

I couldn't be happier that Tommy is our new dog trainer. We had an unfortunate experience of our dog getting over excited and protective of my kids, and then biting a child, and I was fearful that we would have to say goodbye to her. But I wanted to give the dog every chance I could to succeed. I read some reviews of Tommy online and after contacting him he came to my home the very next day. Within our first session, I felt like I had a new dog. Since that first session, my dog respects me and her environment much more, she is calmer, more relaxed, and looks to me for direction rather than feeling like she has to protect me from every movement of a person, or a dog, or a leaf, or anything that should pass her way. My friends have been amazed at the change in my dog and have kept asking, "What did the trainer do with her?" The surprising part is, he did just about nothing with her except watch her closely. And he did everything with me. My dog had no doubt that I was the one she should listen to. And even if I was confused about what to do, or got nervous myself (make no mistake, I LOVE my dog and this was a scary time in our lives), Tommy stayed completely calm and non-anxious, directed all of his conversation toward me, and helped me gain every understanding I needed in order to succeed. He did pay attention to my dog, love on her, took pictures of her, and all that fun stuff -- when the time was right. But he was here to do his job and to give us his expertise, which was to lend tranquility and order to our little pack. Even since our training session he has been completely responsive, he will come back to be sure we are continuing well in our relationship with the dog, and I am so very happy for this. A couple of times I've done puppy classes at local pet stores. The kind of training those places do does not even BEGIN to compare to what Tommy does with an owner, a family, a dog, a home, and a future for a group of folks living together. I'm forever grateful to Tommy for how he has helped this piece of our life so much, and for how he has helped me to find the amazing dog that was inside my pooch the whole time. I look forward to continued discovery with him.

AggressionBarkingJumping upPullingRecallOther

Dana | Centreville

September-12-2018 Bark busters rating

Tommy came out today to meet with me and my two dogs. One of the dogs has barking/anxiety issues and the other likes to bark for, what seems to be, attention-getting purposes. Tommy trained me on how to deal with the dogs' behavior and they responded very well. I will continue to practice with them daily but so far, I am already seeing huge positive changes in their behavior.

BarkingHyperactivitySeparation anxietyOther

Amanda | Fairfax

August-20-2018 Bark busters rating

Tommy is FANTASTIC. We are very grateful for his initial help and continued support. From the first session, he gave us so much hope which is huge to us. He is extremely professional and focused on his job, he did not once get distracted by other things in our apartment building, side conversation, etc. We are truly thankful.

Puppy managementSeparation anxietyToileting

Tina | Manassas

August-17-2018 Bark busters rating

Tommy worked wonders with our newly rescued dog, Muggsy. We'd only had him a week and saw the need for some training. Within about two hours he was no longer trying to bolt out the door to get outside and was walking on leash like a champ! With consistent practice and training using the techniques Tommy showed us, he has transformed. I highly recommend working with Tommy! He's patient, funny, and he really loves dogs. I'm 100% satisfied and look forward to enjoying many years with our now well-behaved pup!

PullingOther

Gabby | Fairfax

July-06-2018 Bark busters rating

If you are looking for a great dog trainer, this is your guy. Tommy of Bark Busters is the third trainer that I have worked with in this area, and he is absolutely the best. He is responsive, a great communicator, flexible, and very knowledgeable about dogs. Most importantly, he is great at giving information in a way that makes sense to me, so that I can use it to work with my dog. I doubt anyone would regret their decision to work with him. My recently adopted young lab-mix was barking at strangers who came to my door, and he was reacting aggressively to other dogs outside. Within a few minutes of walking into the door, Tommy changed my dog's behavior from a jumping maniac to calm and listening. He had great drills for the dog and me, and shared a lot of information about how I can reinforce the good behaviors and start building on them in the future. Thankfully, he also followed up in writing after the session, which will be helpful. After my experiences with a few other trainers, I was really grateful that Tommy gave me a good framework, but also was flexible and gave us options to create the best result for me and my dog, with our individual personalities and quirks. I've worked with trainers that were set in doing things only one way, and it was frustrating for me, which ended up being frustrating for the dog. Getting started was easy. We spoke for a while first and he gathered information about the dog's behavior and provided some background about what we were going to work on. We then worked together with the dog for a couple of hours in my house. It's hard to believe how much my dog's behavior changed after a relatively small amount of time, but after a few days since my first discussion with Tommy, this dog is acting so much different. I was worried before I contacted Tommy that I might never be able to get my dog's bad habits under control and it felt like we were always in chaos. Tommy helped me bring out my dog's best. I am so grateful for the sense of peace in this house.

AggressionJumping upPullingRecallOther

Katlyn | Manassas

July-06-2018 Bark busters rating

Tommy was a great trainer with my dog Harlem. Harlem picked up the training during the 1st session and we have continued to work on it by ourselves. Tommy was a great choice to fix Harlem’s behavioral issues!

ChewingHyperactivityJumping upRecallOther

Candace | Springfield

July-06-2018 Bark busters rating

Simply amazing. My family and I have had dogs since I was a little girl. We had always adopted our dogs directly from the breeders and raised them from puppyhood on to adulthood. So, I felt I could say I was an experienced dog owner. Little did I know that adopting my own dog, a stray, was more difficult than I had realized. I adopted a one year old stray "megamutt" from Kuwait about 8 months ago. She was surprisingly house trained and for the most part well-behaved with other dogs. I had considered training classes at PetSmart and Petco to help with her socializing skills, but feared that her anxiety would cause issues. I found Tommy through a friend who referred Bark Busters. While I love the lifetime guarantee the company offers, the service that really got my attention and had me reach out to make an appointment was the home-based training. Tommy came to my house and worked with Sooner and my mom's 2 year old husky in a place where they felt comfortable. Immediately, my mom and I noticed changes in our dogs behavior. I swear Tommy brought dogs who were identical to ours over and swapped them out. He was so patient with my mom and I. He not only helped our dogs, but he helped us become better owners and taught us how to really communicate with our furry ones. I also loved that he tailored the training specifically to our dogs and their personalities. I will definitely be scheduling future training sessions with Tommy. Anyone, regardless of if they are first time dog owners or not, can benefit!!

AggressionBarkingHyperactivityJumping upRecall

Walt | Burke

March-22-2018 Bark busters rating

Tommy Meyerhoeffer definitely speaks dog. After just one session we had a different dog. The pooch no longer rules the roost. We've been able to modify his behavior in a very easy way with no gimmicks or treats. I would highly recommend Tommy to anybody who needs help with modifying their dog's behavior.

AggressionBarkingJumping up
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Lisa | Centreville

February-26-2018 Bark busters rating

I adopted a wonderful dog from a local rescue this past Fall that had severe separation anxiety, and I realized I needed some professional help to make sure he would be safe when he was alone. Tommy's guidance quickly made all the difference in helping him become comfortable in his new home, and has continued to help me keep learning how to be a strong leader in the relationship. He has spent time really observing my dog and explaining mannerisms and behavior as well as techniques, and is great at helping you see things from the dog's perspective. Tommy is quickly responsive to any question or concern I have via email or phone, and he always follows up to make sure that things are going well. I could not be more pleased with the training. Highly recommended.

PullingSeparation anxiety
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Linda | Centreville

December-10-2017 Bark busters rating

I reached out to Tommy at Bark Busters for help with my 11 year old Chihuahua, Oscar, and recently adopted 10 year old Pitbull, Roo. I reached out on a Thursday morning and Tommy was able to come that Saturday morning! Oscar is a bit insecure, easily excitable, would bark like crazy when someone knocks on the door/greeted guests a little too exuberantly (with lots of barking included), and would bark at people and other dogs during walks. With the addition of a second dog, I knew it was time to address these behavior issues. Roo is a very sweet dog but needed some reinforcement with basic obedience, loose leash walking, and he had a habit of charging out of his crate in excitement when I would let him out (setting off Oscar and his barking). Tommy was able to quickly identify the issues that needed to be addressed for both dogs, provided great advice and training tips, and really helped me understand how to establish myself as a strong pack leader. After only two days, I already experienced a calmer morning getting ready for work and both dogs were noticeably more well behaved. I found Tommy to be very personable, funny, and extremely thorough. He is very open and honest and I appreciated that he reiterated the need for daily practice and follow through for success. He is VERY responsive through text and email. I'm looking forward to Tommy's next visit!

BarkingJumping upPullingRecallOther

Laura | Springfield

December-08-2017 Bark busters rating

I found Tommy Meyerhoeffer while generally searching online for help with our new puppy. While mostly house trained our pup was still peeing and pooping in the house in odd ways that seemed behavioral. We had been considering obedience training but really didn't feel obedience training was going to address our specific needs nor would routine weekly classes work well with our schedules. I also know from obedience training with our other dogs, one 6 or 12 week class generally isn't enough and there is almost no customization within group classes. The reviews for Tommy were excellent and the fact that so many clients reported seeing success after only one visit really drew me in. We hired Tommy last week to help us with our 3 dogs. 2 who just need some minor work and the new puppy who needs more attention. I am happy to report that reviews were spot on! Within just a few hours in our first visit, Tommy taught our family techniques that had all 3 dogs falling into line! While we are still working on the puppy bathroom issues, Tommy has been amazing on that as well. He is very accessible to his clients by phone or email and we have been in constant touch - with me reporting observations and Tommy giving suggestions. We will have our 2nd work session with Tommy this Friday and I am really looking forward to it! While the initial cost may seem higher than a single obedience class, I can honestly say this is much better value for the money. The one-time fee covers training for your dog for the life of the animal and Tommy is on call any time you need him. When I calculated how many general training classes I would need to cover our issues and basic obedience, general obedience classes likely would have added up to be about equal to this fee and I would not have had the on-call support that I have with Tommy. Our family highly recommends Tommy and the Bark Busters methodology for training. We have tried other means and classes and have not had the success we have seen with just one meeting with Tommy!

BarkingJumping upToiletingPuppy management

Laura | Springfield

December-08-2017 Bark busters rating

I found Tommy Meyerhoeffer while generally searching online for help with our new puppy. While mostly house trained our pup was still peeing and pooping in the house in odd ways that seemed behavioral. We had been considering obedience training but really didn't feel obedience training was going to address our specific needs nor would routine weekly classes work well with our schedules. I also know from obedience training with our other dogs, one 6 or 12 week class generally isn't enough and there is almost no customization within group classes. The reviews for Tommy were excellent and the fact that so many clients reported seeing success after only one visit really drew me in. We hired Tommy last week to help us with our 3 dogs. 2 who just need some minor work and the new puppy who needs more attention. I am happy to report that reviews were spot on! Within just a few hours in our first visit, Tommy taught our family techniques that had all 3 dogs falling into line! While we are still working on the puppy bathroom issues, Tommy has been amazing on that as well. He is very accessible to his clients by phone or email and we have been in constant touch - with me reporting observations and Tommy giving suggestions. We will have our 2nd work session with Tommy this Friday and I am really looking forward to it! While the initial cost may seem higher than a single obedience class, I can honestly say this is much better value for the money. The one-time fee covers training for your dog for the life of the animal and Tommy is on call any time you need him. When I calculated how many general training classes I would need to cover our issues and basic obedience, general obedience classes likely would have added up to be about equal to this fee and I would not have had the on-call support that I have with Tommy. Our family highly recommends Tommy and the Bark Busters methodology for training. We have tried other means and classes and have not had the success we have seen with just one meeting with Tommy!

BarkingJumping upToiletingPuppy management
15169-1509226045.jpg

Laura | Burke

October-29-2017 Bark busters rating

Our vet recommended Bark Busters to help train our puppy, Bailey. With our past pets we always took them to group training with little to no results. We decided to do something different with Bailey, so we took our vets advice and emailed Bark Busters. The response was fast. Our trainer Tommy was at our house about 1 week later. We have nothing but great things to say about Tommy. He is polite, easy to talk to, friendly, knowledgeable, patient, supportive....I think you get the picture. Within minutes after the training started we saw a difference in Bailey's behavior. We couldn't believe it! The techniques Tommy taught us really worked that fast and weren't hard at all. We just had to be consistent. Tommy gave us some homework and we set a tentative, follow up, appointment. After a few weeks of practicing the skills we noticed some other behaviors in Bailey we needed help with. We emailed Tommy. He answered right away and was at our house the next weekend. THIS PROGRAM IS AMAZING AND THE PEOPLE ARE AWESOME!!! Totally worth the investment. Thank you Bark Busters and especially Tommy for helping us have the furry family member we have always wanted.

ChewingHyperactivityJumping upToiletingPuppy management
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Aimee | Centreville

October-25-2017 Bark busters rating

My boyfriend and I just got a 3 month old collie retriever named Chino. I was a little rusty on puppy training since it's been 10 years since I had to a puppy and wanted Chino to have a good start in training. Tommy is a natural dog trainer. Chino responded positively to him immediately. Tommy was patient and professional. He was able to work with me and Chino, and his training methods are easy but effective. I felt at ease and had more direction in puppy training after our first session. Since my boyfriend missed the first session, Tommy took the time to do another training demonstration with us. Thanks to Tommy, I have confidence that Chino is on his way to be a great and well behaved dog (he's already a wonderful puppy:)

Puppy management
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Christina | Fairfax

September-09-2017 Bark busters rating

We hired Tommy a bit last minute through bark busters while visiting in town from abroad. Bark busters is a bit more expensive so we were a little wary and went back-and-forth on whether it would be worth it. Ultimately we loved the reviews of bark busters and the lifetime guarantee that they offer around the world so we decided to check it out. We were also told that Tommy has a policy where if we felt we got nothing from the first session he wouldn't take any payment but that he has never had to do this and bark busters was confident that we wouldn't want to either. Tommy was excellent. We weren't really sure what to expect as this was the first training we've had for our dog Gilly who is a nine month old German Shepherd mix and rescue. She's been having recent barking problems that make it difficult for us to take her out in the city so we wanted to bring in a professional. We had already read books and websites and tried to do this ourselves at home to no avail. When Tommy arrived he was immediately friendly and professional. We sat down and for the first 30 minutes he observed how we interacted with Gilly, went through what the session would look like, and reviewed the basic principles. I was amazed that within the first 10 minutes Tommy pinpointed things that we were doing that were causing problems for Gilly and preventing her from improving behavior. He pointed these things out in a nice and respectful way - showing empathy and describing his own experiences with his dog and with other clients so we didn't feel like we were just screw ups. We then moved on to specific exercises to set a foundation for training. It was very different from a lot of the trainings that we read about which were more treat-based. While I was skeptical at first I was amazed with quick results from Tommy's methods. We started in the house and then moved on to outdoors around more dogs and people. By the end of the session Gilly was mentally tired in a good way and already much better behaved. Tommy and bark busters was more expensive than the other options that we saw but we would highly recommend it to anyone as we saw results.

AggressionPullingRecallPuppy management

Elaine | Fairfax

August-18-2017 Bark busters rating

My husband and I were so impressed with Tommy's visit yesterday. Not only was he well spoken and personable, he helped us train our dog when we thought she may need to be re-homed. Just after two hours, Jyn was respecting the door, the fence, and our space. Tommy also encouraged us to call or email him any time and I believe he means really means it! I would recommend Tommy and his expertise to anyone struggling with their dog. As an owner of a pitbull, I feel that I have a greater responsibility to ensure that my dog is well trained and respectful.

AggressionBarkingJumping upRecallSibling rivalry

Natalia | Fairfax

August-06-2017 Bark busters rating

Tommy Meyerhoeffer visited us to help integrate our new 9 month old, a shelter dog, into our home. We already had another female, 6 years old, and saw signs of dominance and some aggression from both that we needed to correct right away. The 9 month old was also destroying a lot of things in our home. Her behavior was expected but we were clueless about how to fix the problem. Tommy visited us right away on a Sunday (which we really appreciate) and was patient, polite, and made sure to explain and answer any questions we had (trust me, there were many). He also led by example and it was interesting to see the response he got from our dogs just by being calm and collected. The methods he taught us also helped a lot. Just a day has passed and we already see signs of improvement. Both dogs are actually listening to our commands and there is a much safer and confident atmosphere for all of us. I highly recommend Tommy!

AggressionBarkingJumping up
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Sharon | Manassas

July-14-2017 Bark busters rating

Thank you for all your help with Jake and Penny yesterday. I was truly amazed at how effective the training techniques were! I was surprised at how well Jake responded. I was really worried it was too late to help him but through your guidance and support, I learned so much about what Jake thought his role was in the house and also how we, as the owners, contributed to the situation. I have already observed a change in Jake's demeanor since the training session. He appears to be calmer and more settled.

AggressionBarkingOther

Alex | Fairfax

June-18-2017 Bark busters rating

Tommy saved my sanity! I rescued a pitbull mix and it was IMPOSSIBLE to walk him on a leash. I had raised dogs before and even took some pet store training courses to help with his pulling. NOTHING was working, and I was losing hope. My pup would just constantly pull, stop randomly, and lunge at other dogs. It took one session and a follow up for fine tuning with Tommy, and my fears were absolved! Tommy showed me how to 'speak dog', and most importantly reassure me that it was something fixable. My mistakes had come from trying to force these human concepts of behavior on an animal that speaks a different language. I practiced the exercises Tommy taught me and I actually look forward to walks with my dog now. I was impressed with the arsenal of different techniques he showed me, and more impressed with how well they worked! Thank you SO much.

HyperactivityJumping upPullingOther
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Courtney | Fairfax

June-16-2017 Bark busters rating

Tommy helped me with training my head-strong miniature dachshund, Dallas. She had extreme separation anxiety. She would chew through her crate, cutting her mouth in the process and then completely destroying my apartment when I would leave. After several a few months of her escaping and harming herself, I contacted Tommy. Tommy gave me some training exercises to start working with and advice that completely shifted the way I was acting towards her. Now, she doesn't follow me all over the house or whine and bark when I leave her alone. She can stay home while I'm at work without destroying my house or her mouth! I also had Tommy help me with her obsession with rocks and digging. After a few minutes working with her I was able to get her over her obsession. Dallas has stopped digging for rocks and she's able to calm herself down now. My favorite thing about Tommy as a dog trainer is that he helps you and your dog communicate without hitting or screaming at the dog. So many people think smacking a dog or scaring them is the way to get them to do what you want. Thank you Tommy :)

BarkingDiggingHyperactivitySeparation anxietyOther