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I have met Joe and Crystal on several occasions, while training for dog sports as well as at their home and business location. Both are knowledgeable, welcoming, and professional. I was particularly impressed when watching Joe interact with and work with one of my dogs, a Dutch Shepherd who is very quirky, easily frustrated, and rather difficult to handle. Joe understood my dog’s temperament very quickly and well, was incredibly patient and knew exactly how to handle him in a way that was clear and kind, and overall a joy to watch. I would definitely recommend them for both training needs as well as their breeding program – with respect to the quality of dogs and knowledge in selecting an appropriate puppy for a particular home.
We used stronghold to train both of our pups. One was a 14 week old Black Lab. We opted for onsite kenneling and training for him. We also have an Australian shepherd (2 years old)she is far more timid and stresses much easier. For her we opted to do training sessions. She only had a few behaviors we were looking correct. I had never done anything like this before but after meeting Joe and Crystal there was no question where my dogs needed to be. The bond Joe has with Murphy is unbreakable. He has since helped me to bond with him in a manner I have never with any other animal. When we sent him Murphy he was just a silly puppy who was not in the least bit potty trained despite our best efforts. He came back to us house broken, well mannered, ready to work and most importantly happy. Dorothy our Australian Shepherd can now walk well on a leash, no longer jumps on people when they come in and is gradually gaining more confidence. She barks less and is a more relaxed dog. The best thing about working with Joe is that he taught me how to be a good dog mom. Expect and demand the behaviors I want from my dogs and to learn my role in those behaviors I didn’t like. It was training for all of us. This has been hands down one of the best decisions I ever made. I can’t recommend them enough.
Great down to earth people! Ready to help you with any training or boarding needs!