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Emilie and Lachland

Kathy Kear is my hero. She saved my dog’s life—and maybe mine as well—or at least saved me from a lifetime of raising confused, unbalanced dogs.

I have always loved dogs, and I can’t imagine living my life without them even though I’ve had some pretty horrible experiences. Lachlan, my rescued tri-pod pit bull, provided the worst. He almost killed my other dog.

I got Lachlan as a 12-week old puppy, who had clearly had a rough start in life. Missing a leg and sickly, I vowed he was going to flourish in my care. I signed Lachlan up for every puppy socialization class and then obedience training classes I could manage—and he did flourish. He loved playing with other dogs, enjoyed treat training, and I thought we were on a path to a happy go-lucky dog.

Lachlan was about a year old when the problems began. He began not only showing dog aggression to dogs at the dog park, he began fighting with my other male dog, Bandit, an older cattle dog. I only knew how to treat train, give affection, and to keep the dogs apart. I went to “bully dog” classes, dog aggression seminars, and whatever I could get my hands on, but all of these classes focused on positive reinforcement and not the root of the problem. And while I watched Cesar Milan, the Dog Whisperer, on TV, I didn’t know HOW to do what he did. When Lachlan attacked Bandit, I was advised to put him down by the professional dog trainers I knew, vets, and even friends.

Thankfully, having watched Cesar Milan, I knew there were possibilities and I began exploring different methods of training. I met some terrible trainers and some wonderful trainers, but it was Kathy and Cause and Effect Training that got us on the right path. What helped me choose to work with Kathy is her set program that’s not exactly set. She definitely tweaked the program to meet our needs. But because there were guidelines, I could get an idea of where we were headed. Also, giving her a lump sum of money upfront kept me committed to the program and the work. I was weary of this at first as I gave a lump sum to another trainer who promised he could help and basically didn’t. A wise voice within me had told me not to work with this trainer—but in my desperation, which this trainer played on, I didn’t listen. This same wise voice told me to work with Kathy and I am so grateful I listened this time!

Kathy has not only been supportive, she inspires me to do the work. I am inspired by her dedication, her pearls of wisdom, but most of all, her honesty. She shared with me her journey with her dogs and it helped me see that I could change. She guided me through the process, she listened to me, and she made no empty promises. I will never forget the first day, she said, “ I can’t promise you that you’ll be able to take Lachlan off leash and un-muzzled to a dog park again. I can’t promise you that. I can promise you that if you do the work (this is key!) you will be able to take Lachlan almost anywhere, on leash. “ And I am now officially part of the Cause and Effect Training village. Kathy offers free, once a month, group-training sessions for her clients. It is such a rewarding experience to meet people who truly understand what you have gone through with your dog and also to be a source of support for those just starting out. It has been such an amazing journey working with this wonderful, powerful, wise woman and seeing not only a transformed dog, but seeing myself transform—which has been the real gift. Thank you, Kathy!


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